8 Dining Out Tips

It's true; you can enjoy lunches with the girls, a Friday night date and still lose weight. By following this simple guide, and instilling good practices, you can feel satisfied and get skinny at the same time.

Here are eight quick and savvy tips that will make dining out a fit and healthy event.

Waiting Time

If you encounter a wait prior to being seated, order a side-dish of crunchy veggies and accompany it with a refreshing beverage. Ask to add cucumbers to your ice water or a fresh strawberry to sparkling water for a summer thirst quencher.

Or, keep the time moving. Some restaurants will accommodate waiting diners by offering to call their cell phone when their table is ready. Ask your hostess to do the same and take a short stroll around the block to pass the time.

Order With Confidence

Carefully choose your restaurant. Check out prospects on the internet; look up their menu and nutritional information. Being in the know prior to your visit will put you in the power position to choose foods that coincide with your healthy nutritional plan.

Always be nice. There is not a server in the world that enjoys dealing with a snobby, nutrition stickler.  Be sure to articulate your questions on how foods are prepared with a smile. I've been known to fib a little and use the 'ole, "I have food allergies" trick. Servers seem to be much more accommodating when they believe you may have a reenactment of Will Smith in the movie Hitch; they don't want your face expanding like a blowfish at their table.

Begin Your Meal With the End in Mind

Enter your dining experience with a strategy to cut quantity. Share a meal, or ask for a to-go box when you are ordering. Planning ahead to eat the proper portion will keep you in control.

Decide before you start eating, how you want to feel at the end of your meal. Do you want to walk away feeling satisfied, or overly stuffed and regretful? When you plan ahead, your mental expectation will help remind you when you are at the point of satisfaction. Ask the server to immediately clear your plates once you've reached that point, and have him/her prepare your food to-go.

Bank Your Calories

It's entirely possible to drink more calories than your entire meal. A couple of margaritas could close in on the 1,000 calorie mark. If alcohol is a must, save your calorie expenditure and order skinny margarita or a low carb/low sugar alcohol choice.

As for going lean with your entr?e, have your meats or vegetables prepared grilled or broiled and hold the sauce. If you are craving a favorite dish that you know is not part of your fit plan, go ahead and order it, but with a calculated course of action.

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