Are you one of the many American families that love to eat out at your favorite restaurants? If so, then you probably think that this lifestyle is not good for a healthy diet and most of the time this assumption is right, but you can still dine out occasionally and still be able to maintain a healthy diet. What it all boils down to is making smart choices in the foods that you eat and knowing the nutritional values of the food that you need to stay happy, physically fit, mentally stable and live an active life.
The first thing that you should do while eating out is to not order a drink. It is very tempting to order a glass of beer or some other mixed beverage for dinner, but the problem with these are that they have many empty calories which are not good for your body. One of the exceptions to the rule when it comes to alcohol is wine. Red wine has been proven to actually prevent heart disease in some people. Always remember, you should only drink one glass and no more. When I go out to a restaurant, I always order a cold glass of water which is much better for your body and your wallet.
You should also not order any appetizers unless it is part of the salad bar. The problem with these foods are that they are usually high-fat foods that are not designed to fill you up and they can even cause you to crave even more high-fat foods. Some of the well known appetizers are mozzarella sticks, potato skins, and wings. Try to focus on your main course meal and if you must have an appetizer, share the single portion with your dinner guests.
Before you order your main dish, make sure that you know the ingredients in the meal. Dishes with cream sauces or high fat meats should be avoided and it is not a smart choice to order potatoes or onion rings. Instead, order some type of vegetables with your meal or just order the main course when possible.
One of the most important things is the size of your meal. If possible, try to order off the lunch menu as those portions are much smaller then the dinner portions. You should always ask your waiter for a doggie bag at the beginning of your meal. This way, you can split your meal in half and not be tempted to eat the whole entire meal in one setting. Usually, you will get enough food for two or three portions in one meal.
The last thing and probably one of the hardest things that you should do is to skip dessert. If you feel that you must order dessert, then split the single portion with your dinner party or split it in half. Some of the desserts that are served in restaurants contain more calories then your whole meal, so think twice before you decide to indulge yourself at the end of your meal. There are times when all of us tend to cheat a little when it comes to eating and that is completely normal, but healthy eating requires a lot of will power and commitment.
I hope that you found this information useful and if you would like more information on ways to live healthy, then please visit my healthy living web site where you will find great information to help you live a long and healthy life.