Eat Out Fearlessly

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Be a Picky Eater

Be a picky eater in a restaurant, just as you would at home. By focusing on quality, not quantity, you're putting the emphasis on taste, not bulk. The shift in focus will help you slow down and enjoy your food more.

Order exactly what you want prepared exactly as you want it. If your favorite salad dressing is olive oil and vinegar with blue cheese crumbles, ask for just that. If you want your meat rare, ask for it rare. Don't be shy. You're paying.

If the food doesn't meet your standards, don't eat it. If you want to send it back to the kitchen, do so. Heck, if you want a certain pasta dish without the pasta, the cook can probably figure it out. Be polite but steadfast. After all, it's your tummy, your waistline, and your money we're talking about here.

Consume the Basics

In eating out, make sure that you follow The Plate Method. It shouldn't be hard, even in ethnic restaurants. Every culture of the world eats proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. You should be able to find combinations of the three basic food groups that work for your body.

In choosing a restaurant, ask yourself these three questions:

  1. Is my stomach now at 0? If not, can I be at 0 by the time we eat? When you don't start at 0, it will be harder to lose weight and may prevent you from staying at your ideal size.

  2. Can I get at least 15 grams of high-quality complete protein in my meal at this restaurant? Fifteen grams is a portion about the size of a deck of cards. You should be able to eat at virtually any restaurant in the world, with the possible exception of vegetarian restaurants, and get enough high-quality complete protein. At one of our favorite noodle restaurants, we order extra meat for our salad or pasta so we get enough.

  3. Can I order enough vegetables and fruits? This is usually easy at regular sit-down restaurants and now at many fast-food restaurants. They offer salads, fruit, and salad bars.

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Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Healthy Weight Loss © 2005 by Lucy Beale and Sandy G. Couvillon. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit the Idiot's Guide web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


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