Do Your Homework Before Eating Out
When you’re dining out, you can still order a healthy meal. All it takes is a bit of research and planning on your part.
Most fast-food and family-style chain restaurants publish their menus and detailed nutrition information on their websites, making it easy for you to put together a healthy meal with calorie, fat, and sodium totals at your fingertips.
Get an App
As any teenager will tell you, there’s an app for that! Some that can help you make healthier restaurant choices include:
- HealthyOut finds meals at nearby restaurants that match your nutrition guidelines, such as a maximum calorie count, preferred ingredients, and dietary parameters like low-carb or gluten-free.
- Urbanspoon provides lists of nearby restaurants by cuisine, location, and ratings. Menus and reviews are included.
Keep these tips in mind when you’re ordering at a restaurant that doesn’t provide nutrition information:
- Order standard portions instead of large or supersized meals.
- Choose foods that are baked, broiled, grilled, poached, roasted, or steamed.
- Make healthy substitutions, such as a baked potato instead of french fries.
- Make healthy choices at the salad bar by sticking with fresh greens, raw vegetables, and low- or nonfat dressings.
- Prevent temptation and a load of extra calories by asking the server to remove the bread basket or chips and salsa.
- Ask that all sauces, dressings, and gravies be served on the side so that you can control the amount you add to your food.
- Skip dessert or choose fresh fruit or fruit sherbet or sorbet.
Find healthy recipes and more culinary content on our Eating Well page.