The holidays are fast approaching! This means that we get to attend reunions, parties, and get togethers here and there. While it sounds fun and exciting, some people dread the thought of it because they know that they will gain weight with all the celebrations. Well, worry not! With these tips, you can still eat healthy and watch your weight even when eating out!

Here’s how to stay healthy during all the holiday festivities:

Pre-Meal

  • If eating out, check the restaurant’s menu before you go. This way, you can plan your meal ahead and decide on what (and what not) to eat.
  • Drink at least one glass of water about an hour before your meal. This helps you avoid overeating and aids digestion.
  • Be the first to place your order! Since you came prepared, you can order your food before everyone else does. What does this do? This helps prevent you from getting influenced by your group’s food choices and you get to stick to what you want to eat– which is healthy!
  • Order a salad for appetiser instead of the usual nachos, bread and butter, or french fries. It’s also wise to ask for the dressing to be served on the side so you can control how much of it you will consume.

Food Choices

  • Always look at the menu’s healthy section. Restaurants nowadays usually provide a selection of healthy main courses. Say you are having dinner at Chili’s; you may opt for a grilled salmon instead of their Big Mouth burgers. It’s the same goodness but with less calories!
  • Another thing that you can take advantage of in restaurants is the option to switch your white rice for brown or red rice. There’s less guilt if you take that extra cup of rice, and it fills you up faster than white rice.
  • Be wise with sides. Avoid mashed potatoes, potato salad, fries or extra white rice! Instead, go for an extra serving of steamed veggies or corn on a cob.
  • Say no to soda. Let’s not kid ourselves by thinking that if we drink coke zero, it will negate all the calories of the steak you just ate. I’m a fan of water and I believe it’s the best companion to any meal. But if you prefer something on the sweeter side, go for a small glass of fresh fruit juice instead.
  • Have dessert in moderation. If you have a sweet tooth and can’t help but to have dessert, at least stay away from freak milkshakes and molten lava cakes. Your best options are to have fresh fruit or a small slice of light cheesecake.

After Meal

  • If your barkada or group of friends is like mine, then you will probably go to a nearby coffee shop after dinner for a relaxing cup of coffee or some dessert. I suggest that you grab a hot tea this time. Do not add sugar or simple syrup, and instead have it with a natural sweetener like honey. If you really can’t resist a blended beverage, order it with nonfat milk and no whipped cream.

 

These are just few things to remember to be able to enjoy eating out and still remain healthy. Remember, food is part of the holiday season and should not get in the way of your celebration. Enjoy the holidays and stay healthy!

 

Leslie Francisco
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