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4 Tips For Eating Out

Navigating eating out is a topic I help every one of my clients with. Eating out is often unplanned and accompanied by guilt and regret the next day. But what if I told you you can still eat out, lose weight, and keep it off? I’m not going to tell you that you can just go eat at McDonald’s whenever you want, but it is possible to eat out without ruining your progress. You just have to be strategic!

Top Tips for Eating Out without Blowing it!

  1. My number 1 tip for navigating eating out is deciding ahead of time where you are going to eat. Plan ahead and look at the menu. Decide ahead of time what you will get or won’t get. Oftentimes, in social settings, we tend to be peer-pressured into doing things we wouldn’t do otherwise. If you have your mind made up about what you will and won’t eat, you will be much more likely to follow through.

  2. My second tip is to have a non-negotiable list of places that you won’t go to. For me, McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, and Taco Bell are a few places I won’t ever eat and I’m not sorry about it. Always choose a local place, if possible, because typically they use more fresh, local foods.

  3. Tip number 3, stick to the salads, entrees, and appetizers. No, you don’t have to choose the most boring food on the menu. Yes, you should choose the meal that contains the most whole foods. Typically, this part of the menu contains just that. To give you an example, if I am at a steakhouse, I would order a steak, a side salad, veggies, or a sweet potato. If I am eating Mexican I order fajitas and skip the rice and tortilla shells. Try to stay away from the high-carb and high-fat meals.

  4. The last tip, keep the alcohol or sugary drinks out completely. I always tell clients to stick to unsweetened tea with lemon or club soda with lime. No one needs to know your club soda doesn’t have vodka in it. And quite frankly people should respect the fact that you are trying to make better choices for your health.

Eating out doesn’t have to be complicated

What we all need to understand is that your eating habits aren’t going to be perfect 100% of the time. Eating out is going to happen. But you are in control of where, when, and how much you do so. I always tell clients to limit their eating out to 1 time per week, no more than 2. Eating out occasionally isn’t going to wreck your life, but if you are doing it frequently, say 2-3 times + per week, it will. Most restaurants are not using the best and cleanest ingredients and there is a lot that is out of your control when eating out, so keeping the frequency low is best. But when you do go out, choose wisely. Having someone keeping you accountable is often the missing link for many.

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