If you’re on a strict eating plan, you will get a little nervous when friends or family ask you to join them for meal at a restaraunt or to get some take away food. The truth is, most popular meals at a restaurant aren’t healthy. It’s not because the venue or chef want to serve unhealthy food, the fact is it sells better. They’re simply giving people what they want.
But with these few little tricks and tweaks, there’s no reason why you can’t have a delicious meal out while downing your entire day’s calories in one sit.
- Choose a difference sauce, or have less or none at all: Many of your mainstream sauces are very high in sugar. Tomato and barbeque are Aussie favourites, but you might as well be throwing sugar cubes on your plate. Your creamier sauces like aioli, ranch and thousand island aren’t much better. But this might not mean having no topping at all. Asking for less or to have it on the side of the abovementioned sauces could save you plenty of calories. Some restaurants drown a meal completely in a sauce and at times it can ruin the taste. Or if you want to be super strict, adding lemon or lime juice will work on almost any food for adding extra taste sensations. Especially salads.
- Drink lighter: Most people forget how much calories we consume in liquid form. Soft drinks are your number one enemy, but fruit juices aren’t too far behind. Ice tea is a better alternative, though mainstream ones can also contain a lot of sugar. If you’re looking to drink alcohol, avoid darker “heavier” beers. Red wine is somewhat nutritious with it’s anti-oxidants, but still high in calories. A nip of spirit with lime and soda is probably the best bet.
- Go easy on Bread: Often in the case of bread and sandwiches, the bread is the least healthy item you’re consuming. Avoid white where you can. If wholemeal is an option, opt for it. Bread is commonly an appetiser as well. If you do have in it your entree, it’s probably best not to order a meal with it for your main course.
- Chips aren’t your sidekick: Arguably the most loved food in the western world, hot chips offer very little nutritionally. Most restaurants you can ditch them for salad or veges. Or you could ask for an extra plate to put them on and share them around.
- Sharing is caring: Portions at many restaurants can be overly generous. Anyone who’s travelled to America or European countries will attest to this. Sharing a meal is simple math when it comes to cutting calories. But even if you share two courses together, it’ll often benefit you nutritionally. Remember variety is important when it comes to health! Instead of say ordering two pizzas or two burgers, share that meal and order a salad on the side.
- Greek salad topped with Dodona’s feta cheese and drizzled with extra virgin olive oil. You can rarely go wrong with a salad and there’ll be multiple on our new menu. Feta cheese is high in calcium, protein and good fats.
- Lamb Fillet Souvlaki served with hummus and tzatziki. Red meat is great in moderation and especially if it’s char grilled. Hummus when made fresh is also very nutrious with its main ingredient chickpeas being one of the highest protein vegetables you can pick (higher per gram than eggs in fact). Tzatziki too has plenty of nutrition with the yoghurt containing plenty of good bacterias while the cucumbers, garlic and olive oil are body friendly as well.
- Ocean king prawns cooked in olive oil, garlic, chilli and parsley with a dash of tomato – As we said above, seafood has plenty of great nutritional benefits and fresh prawns are no exception. Chilli is actually good for metabolism, so it’s actually great for weight loss.
- Large black Australian mussels cooked in white wine + tomato chilli – With very little saturated fat and plenty of protein (more per gram than chicken), mussels are great for muscles!
- Steamed snapper fillets served with course warm pesto potato salad – Snapper is like many fish in that it’s low calories and what calories it does have comes from protein and fatty acids. Pesto is an Italian favourite and contains predominantly pine nuts and basil leaves which a good combination of vitamins and minerals with good fats and proteins.
© Lantern Club, Roselands