at a restaurant or grab fast food rather than cooking a meal at home.
At times, eating out is a “must” so that they can attend all the extra-curricular activities planned by schools, churches, and other organizations in their lives.
Here are tips for eating out so that families do not feel they must restrict this method of feeding the family.
• Ask for dressings, sauces and gravies on the side. Then, you can make the decision
about the serving size of one to two tablespoons of these extra fats on the food
ordered. (Teach the children to do this as well.)
• Order meat grilled, broiled, or baked.
• Ask for vegetables that are steamed rather than fried.
• Ask for sandwiches without mayonnaise or other “secret” sauces.
• Avoid “super-sizing” and many combo meals, especially super-size soft drinks. They may
be an economic value, but keep in mind you are adding extra calories and fat.
• Avoid cream-based soups.
• To curb your appetite before dining out, nibble on a piece of fruit. Have a small bag of
fruit to offer the children between pick-up time and the time to eat dinner. Grapes and
oranges slices will not turn dark before they are eaten like some fruit.
• Skip the extra cheese and butter on anything you order.
• If a restaurant serves large portions, split the meal with a family member or request
a “doggie bag.”
• Learn to be assertive about what you want when you order your food. Many
restaurants are happy to accommodate you and your family. They want to keep their
customers happy and coming back!
I am still in your corner and will be offering other ideas that you can use in eating smart and staying healthy.
Source: “Fast Food Nutrition Guide.” Positive Promotions. Marjorie Marks, M.Ed., RD 2006.
Rome nutritionist Barbara Carter is lending her expertise to the Health Quest mission by writing a column twice a month.