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Eating out while dieting can be done with a little bit of planning.
When counting calories and trying to lose weight, you may think that it’s impossible to eat out at a restaurant. If you’re on a weird eating plan where you have to count macros or are avoiding certain types of macros (such as carbs) then that may be the case. However, the best diets that are really an eating lifestyle, should allow you to go out to eat without too much trouble.
Eating out is often a luxury for most parents. There’s generally not a lot of time or energy to get all of the kids to wherever it is that you’re going to eat out at. And then when you do get there, one of the last things that you want to have to figure out is what you can or can’t eat for your diet. It takes a lot of work to eat out with kids while watching what you’re eating.
The key to being able to eat out while on any type of a diet is to understand how many calories you should be eating in a day, and to plan accordingly to go out to eat. If you’re only supposed to eat 1700 calories a day, then you’ll likely want to leave 700+ calories for going out to eat - you’ll likely find that number is semi-difficult to reach at most restaurants that you go to. However, by knowing how many calories you have to work with, you’ll be able to set yourself up for success.
If there’s a specific meal that you want to eat, then figure out how many calories are in it before going out so that you can eat earlier meals accordingly. You may be shocked at how many calories are in many of your favorite meals that you eat out on. The reason a lot of those meals taste so delicious is because they’re packed with oil and other high calorie items that make them blow up your diet amount.
If you’re unsure what you want, then you should make sure you’re looking for foods that are low in butter and oil (ideally none), and that are not loaded with all kinds of other unnecessary calories. While a salad is usually a good choice, you’ll likely want to skip the dressing that they’re going to provide to you as part of it. Avoid meals that are heavy with bread and rice as well as those meals are generally high in calories in comparison to how much food you’re eating (carbs aren’t bad, but those foods are generally smaller portions in comparison to the amount of food you’re getting per calorie).
If you’re unsure, then sticking to vegetable and protein based meals. While you may misjudge the number of calories in a meal that you’re eating even for a salad, the number of calories you misjudge should not be as much compared to missing on a huge steak dinner with potato.
Eating out should be something you still enjoy while on a diet. Wrangling the kids may not be any easier, but you shouldn’t have to stress over getting something you can enjoy.