Weekly wellness: The 123s and ABCs of dining out (part 1)

3 years 4 months 3 weeks ago Monday, July 21 2014 Jul 21, 2014 Monday, July 21, 2014 12:37:00 PM CDT July 21, 2014 in News
By: Amanda Barnes, KOMU Wellness Coach
loading

COLUMBIA - When you are trying to change your daily fueling habits, dining out at restaurants can seem overwhelming. Especially if the decision to dine out is based on work and, because of this, you have no say in the restaurant choice.

Breathe. It's going to be okay.

This is the first of a two-part series created to make things a little more manageable and feel a little less daunting. These tips are meant to be easy. This isn't rocket science. This isn't brain surgery. It's common sense. We aren't reinventing any wheels here. We are just re-reminding you of what you can do to help change your daily habits for the better.

The 123's are super-easy:

1. Be prepared. If you happen to know (in advance) the restaurant where you will be dining, jump online and review their menu. This way you're prepared to order what will best suit your needs.

2. Beware of the buffet. If you have the option of the all-you-can eat buffet or a single entrée, go for the entrée (so you're not tempted). If you opt for the all-you-can-eat salad bar, avoid cream-based "salads" (i.e. potato salad, macaroni salad, etc).

3. Don't drink your calories. Sodas, mixed cocktails and juices can add lots of calories and sugar to your meal. Stick with water and unsweet tea instead.

Now it's time to move on to the ABC's. Hopefully you'll find some tips that will help you along your dining journey.

"A" for Appetizers: I look at appetizers in two ways: skip it or choose it as a meal. If you plan on having an entrée, you probably don't need it. If you didn't see any entrees on the menu that strike your fancy, but the crab cakes appetizer looks delish, plan on ordering that as your entrée with a side salad.

"B" for Bread: Skip it. In most cases, it can add a few hundred calories to your meal. If you have the option of requesting that no bread be delivered to the table, fantastic! If you're with a group of people, just move it to the other side of the table. Save your calories for the meal.

"C" for Creamy/Creamed: If a menu item is described as "creamy" or having a "cream" sauce, in most cases this is an indication of more calories and more fat. I include creamy salad dressings in this too. Try to avoid creamy stuff.

"D" for Dips: I've found that most foods that involve dipping one food item into another food item (aka dipping sauce) is a way to add calories on top of calories. Chicken wings, nachos, chips & salsa, and other foods have a tendency to add to the waistline. Sliced veggies are great! Skip the dip.

"E" for Entree: Choosing an entrée that is going to satisfy you and not break the calorie bank can be a challenge. If you are more focused on "being good," then favor the leaner options. Look for: grilled or baked and chicken or fish; Avoid: fried, battered or creamy. If you are more focused on splurging, pay attention to portion sizes. It's not about suffering. It's about finding a balance that works for you.

"F" for Fried: If you see the word fried as a descriptor of the menu item, ask the server if it's possible to have the item prepared in a different way (i.e. grilled). In this day and age of food allergies, cooks and chefs are accustomed to having to make changes to the preparation of dishes. It's not a problem! Most chefs and cooks will tell you this! They want their customers to be happy! Don't be afraid to ask to have your meal prepared the way you want it.

"G" for Grilled: This is one of the best ways to have your protein choices prepared. Chicken, pork and fish can all be grilled rather than fried. So, even if the menu suggests that the preparation is fried, talk to your server. Avoid fried and go for grilled!

"H" for Half: Portion sizes can be quite large, at times. Challenge yourself to only eat half of your meal and ask for a to-go container for the other half. You might even ask the server to only bring you half of the entrée when your food is ready. If the kitchen can halve your meal before it's even brought to the table, it makes it even easier to succeed at portion control!

"I" for Italian: Pasta! We love it! We just have to be careful when we're at the Italian restaurants. Sauce: go red, not white. Cheese: be careful about adding cheese to your dish (especially if it already has cheese as an ingredient, like lasagna). Adding 1 tablespoon of grated parmesan will add 22 calories to your meal (and I'm pretty sure it's difficult to stop at 1 tablespoon). Pesto: skip it or limit it, because of its oil content.

"J" for Journal: One of the reasons that programs like Weight Watchers are so helpful is because they encourage you to pay attention to what you're eating and drinking. If you have to track and journal every calorie that you consume, you begin to have a self-awareness that is vital to changing habits. There are some excellent smart phone apps available that can help you do the same thing. Or grab a small notebook and a pen!

"K" for Ketchup: Three tablespoons of ketchup can add 50+ calories and 15 grams of sugar to your meal. If you can skip it, skip it.

"L" for Light: Many restaurant chains have started offering "Light" (or "Low fat") menu items. Read the menu and see what your options may be. Usually theses chains also include the nutritional information with the description. They can't make it much easier than that!

Now you're well on your way to becoming a dining-out master! Stay tuned for next week's conclusion to the 123's and ABC's of Dining Out.

Amanda K Barnes
Certified Personal Trainer
www.bebybarnes.com

amanda@bebybarnes

Weekly Wellness

 

More News

Grid
List
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Kevin Roy scored twice and John Gibson made 29 saves as the Anaheim Ducks defeated the... More >>
24 minutes ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 10:20:39 PM CST December 14, 2017 in Sports
CAMDENTON - The Missouri Department of Natural Resources recommended an old manufacturer in Camdenton as a Superfund site. Money... More >>
2 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 8:30:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
VERSAILLES - Prosecutors filed charges against three employees of the Morgan County Jail on Monday, including a nurse accused of... More >>
2 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 7:50:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
FULTON - People who are preparing to travel for the holidays are automatically at risk for robberies, road issues, and... More >>
3 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 7:25:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The search for Missouri's next top education official has started. The State Board of Education... More >>
4 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 6:13:24 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
MOBERLY - Fire and law enforcement officers from three counties received radiological training Thursday at the Moberly Fire Department. ... More >>
4 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 6:09:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Here is the latest on a threat to Moberly Area Community College's Columbia campus: 6:55 p.m. ... More >>
5 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 5:00:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
UPDATE: Suspect Monquail Williams has been taken into custody in Boone County without incident. According to Corporal Andy Boggs... More >>
5 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 4:47:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The City of Columbia has new aid in fighting snowy roads this with the help of its new... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 4:04:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
AUDRAIN COUNTY – One Missouri farmer is righting his wrong following a pig waste leakage into a nearby creek. ... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 3:45:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Authorities are investigating a Wednesday night shooting which injured a 19-year-old Jefferson City resident, police said in... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 3:37:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Callaway County schools donated more than 9,200 toys to Toys for Tots Thursday. "We're excited," coordinator Melissa... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 3:20:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
BELLEFONTAINE NEIGHBORS (AP) - The Latest on the shooting of two St. Louis-area police officers saved by their bulletproof vests... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 3:17:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Thursday marked the five year anniversary of the Sandy Hook shooting. In 2012, Adam Lanza opened fire... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 2:50:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Police now have 75 kits with the opioid overdose reversal medication naloxone, which is also known as Narcan.... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 2:39:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The former administrator of the Pettis County Ambulance District has admitted embezzling more than $227,000... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 2:15:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Democratic lawmakers are voicing their concerns after the Missouri Republican party presented a new tax plan for... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 2:12:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens has appointed a former St. Louis-area Husch Blackwell lawyer to the... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, December 14 2017 Dec 14, 2017 Thursday, December 14, 2017 2:11:00 PM CST December 14, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 29°
11pm 30°
12am 29°
1am 29°
2am 28°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

10:30p
KOMU 8 News @ 10
11:05p
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
12:07a
Late Night with Seth Meyers
10:30p
Rules of Engagement
11:00p
Rules of Engagement
11:30p
The King of Queens

Tonight's Schedule

6:30p
Football Night in Indianapolis
7:20p
Thursday Night Football
7:00p
iHeartRadio Jingle Ball 2017
8:30p
Whose Line Is It Anyway?
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld