April 10, 2023
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Healthy Eating on the Go: Strategies for Dining Out
Dining out and ordering in are convenient options for those with busy schedules, but they can have negative effects on nutrition. When eating out, individuals may be exposed to large portions, high calorie beverages, and nutrient-poor options. In this blog post, we will explore how dining out and ordering in can have negative effects on nutrition, and offer some tips to help make healthier choices.
Portioning: Restaurant meals and takeout orders are often served in large portions, which can lead to overeating and weight gain. To combat this, consider splitting an entrée with a friend, ordering a half portion, or taking home leftovers for later.
Planning Ahead: Many restaurants now offer their menus online, allowing individuals to plan ahead and choose healthier options before arriving. By looking at the menu beforehand, individuals can make informed choices and avoid being swayed by unhealthy options.
Mindful Eating: Mindful eating involves paying attention to the food being consumed, savoring the flavors and textures, and recognizing when one is full. When dining out or ordering in, take the time to slow down and enjoy the meal. This can help prevent overeating and make the experience more enjoyable.
Asking for Modifications: Many restaurants are willing to make modifications to their menu items to meet individual dietary needs. For example, individuals can ask for dressing on the side, substitute a side dish for a salad, or ask for grilled instead of fried options.
Focusing on Nutrient-Dense Foods: Nutrient-dense foods are high in vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients that support optimal health. When dining out or ordering in, focus on options that are high in protein, fiber, and other nutrients. Examples include lean proteins, whole grains, vegetables, and fruits.
High Calorie Beverages: Many restaurants offer high calorie beverages such as soda, sweet tea, and alcoholic drinks. These can contribute to weight gain and other health problems. Instead, opt for water, unsweetened tea, or other low calorie options.
Dining out and ordering in can have negative effects on nutrition. However, by focusing on portion control, planning ahead, mindful eating, asking for modifications, focusing on nutrient-dense foods, and avoiding high calorie beverages, individuals can make healthier choices when dining out or ordering in. By prioritizing nutrition and making informed choices, individuals can achieve optimal health and well-being, while still enjoying valuable social time with friends/family.