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Tips For Eating Healthy When Eating Out

Hi Team Dragon Fit!

As some of you know, my “day job” is managing my family restaurant. I get asked all the time by customers who witnessed me losing 100lbs., “How did you lose all that weight?”. I always smile and tell them I actually lost the weight eating two of my meals every day at my restaurant.  They usually find that hard to believe.

The key to losing weight is to be smart when you eat out. It took some trial and error but I learned several things on my weight loss journey that I would like to share with you. Here are 9 tips that will help you keep on track when you decide to eat out:

1. Request a cooking spray
Oil has a lot of calories and not every restaurant has a spray like Pam available, so you’ll need to check. In fact, before I started eating healthier, my restaurant didn’t. Cooks hate to use a cooking spray because oil cooks food faster. I started using it for all my meals and got great results. Now, I make it available for my customers too.

2. Ask for steamed vegetables
This one is easy. Almost every restaurant has some veggies. The key is to ask for them steamed and be sure to say no oil or butter added.

3. Eat lots of egg whites
Luckily, I work in a breakfast restaurant. Eggs are everywhere! The great thing about egg whites is that they are high in protein and have zero fat and zero carbs. Cook them with a spray (see point one), then you have a perfect item for a low carb diet!

4. Ask for a to-go box at the beginning of your meal and put half your meal away
Wow, you just got a 2-for-1 meal!

5. Skip the mayo or special sauce
It’s tough, but who needs the extra calories, right?

6. Add hot sauce to any dish
I used to hate hot sauces, but now knowing that many of them have ZERO calories, I now love them!

7. Substitute sliced tomatoes, salad, pico de gallo, cottage cheese or fruit instead of hash browns
I love my restaurant’s hash browns! Still, if you are on a low carb diet, then there are plenty of other healthy substitutes. Just ask your server!

8. Order salad dressing on the side
Just getting it on the side will greatly help lower your calories. If you are low carb, then be sure to pass on the croutons too!

9. Ask to speak to a manager if you would like gluten free options or have allergies
You’ll be surprised how many managers like myself truly want to assist our customers with any dietary needs. All you have to do is ask. In fact, I am more than willing to show customers food labels if they are concerned about eating anything.

I hope this helps you get some ideas on how to take control of your diet when you eat out. It’s all about being smart and being prepared to ask some questions. I have a great relationship with my customers. In fact, many of them are the ones helping me brainstorm new healthy dishes to put on my “Peg’s Healthy Picks” menu.

Here’s to your health! Keep “bringing it!

-Coach Fred

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