Pay-day is just around the corner, and for many people, the appetite to eat out will be ever more apparent. Don’t worry, we won’t judge you. But, eating out does not have to upset your healthy eating plan. Here is how you can eat out and still stay on track with your healthy eating plan. 

1. Bag it
You do not have to eat everything that is on your plate to the last crumb. Eat for your stomach. If you are satisfied, stop eating and instead take the leftovers home for the following day. 

Smart tip: Ask for a takeaway container as soon as your food arrives if the portion looks too big. This way, you will not be leaving your self-control to chance. 

2. Read the menu before you go 
If you’re not familiar with the menu of the restaurant you are going to, find it online and read it beforehand to see what you would like to eat. This way, you will reduce the chances of making a rushed decision because of distractions. 

3. Choose water 
Instead of the infamous diet-wrecking bread basket, opt for a glass of water while you wait for your food. If you have a glass of water before eating your food, you will feel fuller before you even eat, minimising your chances of overeating. 

Smart tip:  Ask for some lemon or cucumber, or even mint to flavour your water naturally.

4. Take a break 
This takes us back to point number 1, if you drink water before your meal, you will feel fuller before the meal, and you will also be less likely to eat non-stop until your plate is clean. 

Smart tip: Put the fork down; take a short break and enjoy the conversation and ambiance. This break will allow you to recognise if your stomach is already full. 

5. Make healthy swaps 
–  Choose grilled food over deep fried
–  Choose roasted veg over chips 
–  Choose sparkling water instead of sugary fizzy drinks 
–  Choose flavoursome options instead of using condiments to improve the flavour of the food

You might want to read these similar articles on nutrition and healthy eating: 
Guilt-free hot chocolate alternatives to try this winter
Interpreting food labels

Sources: 
https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/20-healthy-tips-for-eating-out#section1 
https://www.womenshealthmag.com/food/a19984672/healthy-food-swaps/