Ways to Cut Calories when Dining out

Dining out is a luxury for most people. If you are on a diet, or want to lose pounds, dining out should not be stressful. Here are some simple ways to cut calories when dining out.

Weight Watchers, a national weight loss program, recommends that people on program monitor their portion sizes when dining out. Most restaurants provide a larger portion than anyone watching their calories should consume.  Before eating anentree, divide it in half and ask for a “to go” box.  This way, in the course of conversation, the entire plate will not be consumed.

Another tip, provided by Weight Watchers, is to order a salad with the dressing on the side. This enables a diner to limit the amount of dressing that is put on the salad. Some salad dressings have more calories and fat than the entire entree.  Dip each bite of salad into the dressing, rather than pouring it on the salad.

Drink water with your meal. The water will fill you up to the point that you do not eat a large portion of food.

When ordering shy away from the soups that are “creamed.”  These are high in calories.  Order plain broth type soups.

Entree selections on most restaurant menus are marked with “low fat, healthy choices.”  These contain less fat and calories. They are also portion controlled. This means that the portion served is not as large as the regular item.

Fried is not a good word for a person who wants to control calories. Broiled or baked are terms that offer better choices for the conscientious dieter.

Buffet is another word that is a challenge to the person controlling calories. There are so many choices, and the plate becomes fuller than it should be.  If you are at a buffet, opt for a salad, fruit, and an entree that is not smothered in gravy.  Fried items should not be a choice either.  Vegetables are good choices only if they are not covered in butter or bacon grease.  If you want a vegetable, and that is the problem, try to strain as much of the butter/grease from them, prior to putting them on your plate.

Dessert can be eaten, however, opt for the fruit or plain gelatin. 

Eating out is not the challenge that it once was. Restaurants have recognized that there are people who are watching their calories. With this recognition, choices for lower calorie foods have been placed on the menu and buffet tables.