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10 Tips for Eating Out

Toni-Ann DiSantis

10 tips for eating out

Restaurants, convenience and grocery stores, or fast-food places offer a variety of options when eating out.  But larger portions can make it easy to eat or drink too many calories. Larger helpings can also increase your intake of saturated fat, sodium, and added sugars. Think about ways to make healthier choices when eating food away from home.

1 Consider your drink

Choose water, fat-free or low-fat milk, unsweetened tea,

and other drinks without added sugars to complement

your meal.


2 Savor a salad

Start your meal with a salad packed

with vegetables to help you feel

satisfied sooner. Ask for dressing on the

side and use a small amount of it.


3 Share a main dish

Divide a main entree between family and friends. Ask

for small plates for everyone at the table.


4 Select from the sides

Order a side dish or an appetizer-sized portion instead

of a regular entree. They’re usually served on smaller

plates and in smaller amounts.


5 Pack your snack

Pack fruit, sliced vegetables, low-fat string cheese,

or unsalted nuts to eat during road trips or long commutes. No need to stop for other food when these

snacks are ready-to-eat.


6 Fill your plate with vegetables and fruit

Stir-fries, kabobs, or vegetarian menu items usually

have more vegetables. Select fruits as a side dish or



7 Compare the calories, fat, and sodium

Many menus now include nutrition information. Look

for items that are lower in calories, saturated fat, and

sodium. Check with your server if you don’t see them on

the menu. For more information, check www.FDA.gov.


8 Pass on the buffet

Have an item from the menu and avoid the

“all-you-can-eat” buffet. Steamed, grilled, or broiled

dishes have fewer calories than foods that are fried in oil or

cooked in butter.


9 Get your whole grains

Request 100% whole-wheat breads,

rolls, and pasta when choosing

sandwiches, burgers, or main dishes.


10 Quit the “clean your plate club”

Decide to save some for another meal. Take

leftovers home in a container and chill in the

refrigerator right away.