Tips

Tips for Eating Out

Eating out can affect your weight loss efforts when you do not make good choices.

Below are some tips to help you control your food intake when you eat out:
  • Never arrive at the restaurant over hungry. It is even better to have a small snack 2 hours before going out (like an apple or carrot sticks) to decrease your hunger.
  • Choose your drinks wisely as juices, sodas and alcohol have empty calories (calories you do not really need). You can stick to water, sparkling water, sugar free iced tea and diet sodas. As for alcohol, you should avoid having any (unless your doctors allows you a drink) especially when consuming it before your food arrives as alcohol stimulates your appetite.
  • Avoid having crackers, nuts, and chips that are sometimes served before the food arrives as these are very high in fats.
  • Ask the waiter to remove the bread basket or just have one serving.
  • Never “super-size” your meal and avoid “value meals” and promotions. A super-size meal at a fast food chain can have all the calories you need for a whole day! Also, an extra side of fries can have at least 500 calories (calories you do not really need). You can ask for a side of baked potatoes, rice, salad, or steamed vegetables instead.
  • Think before you eat. Decide to have the portion you are allowed to eat and share the rest of your plate (you can also ask to have the rest as take out).
  • Avoid buffets or all-you-can-eat style restaurants.
  • Eat slowly and chew your food well. Your body needs 20 minutes to get the message that you feel full so when you eat slowly, you will feel fuller before you consume too much food.
  • Look for words like grilled, roasted, boiled, or steamed – they will have the lowest calories.
  • Avoid creamy salad dressings or the ones with a lot of mayonnaise and oil. Choose a lemon based, vinegar or mustard based one.
  • Skip the cheese, butter and mayonnaise in all your sandwiches.
  • Skip dessert. Have a spoon of someone’s dessert or share a dessert with someone else.

Adapted from www.simpleprogram.org
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