Do you love going out to eat, but hate what it can do to your weight? You might think going out to eat when you’re trying to lose weight or following a diet is out of the question—but it all comes down to the foods you choose. Avoid these seven foods can help maintain your weight and improve your health. You’d be surprised how easy it is to save hundreds of calories!
1. Anything with Processed Cheese is Asking for a Heart Attack
Chili fries, nachos, and a ton of other unhealthy eats at restaurants usually come with a heaping, oozing side of processed cheese sauce. Eating this sauce is pretty much asking for a heart attack. Not only does this provide no nutritional value, but it’s loaded in calories, saturated fat, and sodium. It doesn’t even include real cheese! If you really do like cheese, you’re better off eating a small portion of a high flavor cheese you really love like feta or mozzarella. This way you’ll get a healthy dose of calcium with those nachos or that sandwich.
2. Hot Fudge Brownie Sundaes Can Pack up to 1,000 Calories
If you’re really tempted to order a hot fudge brownie sundae after lunch or dinner at your favorite restaurant, simply don’t do it. These desserts can pack over 1,000 calories, which can be more than half of what you eat in a day. If you really want the taste of a sweet treat but don’t want to ruin a whole day of healthy eating, try a small portion of vanilla or chocolate ice cream with a small dollop of freshly whipped cream and a cherry. You’ll feel like you’re indulging in an ultra-decadent dessert, but really you’re only eating about 200 calories.
3. Cream Based Soups Contain More Saturated Fat than Broth Based Soup
Corn chowder and clam chowder might sound appetizing on a cold winter’s day, but they’re one of the last things you want to eat when you’re watching your weight. Cream based soups almost always have a higher calorie content compared to broth based soups. Chicken noodle, minestrone, and split pea soup are much better choices that have far fewer calories and grams of fat.
4. Deep-Fried Shrimp, Chicken, Pickles (Yes, Pickles)
In some regions, apparently deep fried pickles are a delicacy! But if you’re trying to eat healthy, it’s good to avoid all foods that are deep-fried. This includes but is not limited too deep-fried shrimp, chicken, zucchini, etc. If you like to eat sushi or Asian cuisine, remember that this includes anything with the word ‘tempura’ in front of it.
5. Extra Cheese Pizza without Veggies Offer Mega Calories with Only Minor Nutrition
Plain cheese pizza might sound pretty simple, but it can pack loads of calories. An ounce of full fat cheese can easily pack 100 calories. And if you have extra cheese on your slice, that adds additional calories and fat. If you must eat pizza, opt for the thin crust. Ask your server to add double the veggies and use half the cheese. This way you’ll get some essential vitamins and minerals with your meal.
6. Refined Pasta Dishes Will Only Lead to Blood Sugar Spikes and Weight Gain
If you love going to Italian or Mediterranean eateries, beware! Many pasta dishes can pack over 1,500 calories, which could be all the calories you need in one day. Even worse, refined pasta dishes like fettuccine alfredo only lead to a spike in blood sugar followed by a crash that leaves you fatigued and lethargic. Stick to whole grain pastas, or, better yet, ditch the pasta altogether!
7. Soda and Other SSBs Are Just Empty Calories
If it’s one beverage you order at a restaurant, it better be water with lemon or lime. Soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) are practically empty calories, increasing your intake of refined sugar, which has been linked to weight gain. Also, don’t think you can get away with diet soda. Although calorie-free these drinks are loaded with artificial sweeteners, which can also mess with your insulin levels.
Eating at your favorite restaurant doesn’t need to be a anxious experience. As long as you navigate your way through the menu strategically, you can enjoy the experience and stick to your health and wellness goals. What are some foods you avoid when eating out?