I am a huge foodie and a very unhealthy one on top of it. Cheeses and butters and full fat milk and mayo and mustard sauce. Try Fab India, its yum! Though I am not a real big fan of healthy eat outs, I have often noticed that people think they eat healthy while eating out while making their food choices. Not necessarily what we all think is healthy is actually healthy for you.
How to order in restaurants so that you eat healthy while eating out?
Not all these tips may be applicable to you or all the options available. I stay in Hyderabad where you can get all foods and that is what makes life really easy over here. This post is more or less influenced by the variety and food options available here in this city. And, yes, we are talking about vegetarian options only.
Go South Indian Style
Okay, have to say South Indian breakfasts are one of the most healthy and light ones all around India.
Idly, upma, low oil rava dosa, low oil uttapam, set dosa, steam dosa are all kind of things which will keep you full anytime of the day, be it breakfast, snacks or meals.
Button idly or Sambar idly are really healthy and filling. They pack a punch with protein and carbs in the right amount.
If you are going for dosas, make sure you do ask for less oil and filling remains only limited to the traditional aloo masala or may be skip that as well, though I would never agree with you that potatoes are bad!!
Pongal, bisibele bath, tomato bath are all other options if you are a rice person. If eaten in correct quantity, they are equally light. Do not over-stuff.
Avoid Eating Heavily
Meal combos or thalis are best had at noon times if you are ravenous. But, if you can, just make do with simple curries and carbs instead of going full on and stuffing yourself with a 5-7 course meals. And, avoid these at dinners at any cost.
For dinner, my choice would be a soup and a salad or a wrap followed by a hot beverage. I do like coffee but I do try to avoid it in the nights so as not to disturb my sleep system.
Mexican food is a good option minus the dressings if you are open to trying out cuisines. And,say no to desserts and sweets after 6 pm.
Skip the Salads or make an Intelligent Choice
I recently noticed someone following a particular diet and they ordered for a salad after the soup and starters.
First of all, normal restaurant soups are actually very unhealthy because they have a lot of salt and corn flour. Go for clear soups and make it clear that you do not want any additives. Go for shorbas or broths instead. Unfortunately, these options might not be available everywhere. My choice is vegetable soup or lemon coriander.
Starters are often unhealthy so skip. And, yes to salads but know what you are getting into. Once my friend ordered one and she was handed a plate of cucumbers and tomatoes and carrots. So, in such restaurants, your best bet is to go main course.
Also, remember that salad dressings are not necessarily healthy. So, choose accordingly.
Go for Fine Dining / Restaurants
Okay, I might sound like a snob and might be absolutely wrong here. But, I have often found quality and customization are available at upscale restaurants. But, this is really a dicey point, not necessarily true.
Finish with a Beverage
What ever you do, always end your meal with some beverage. I would suggest doing this at home as well.
You might be craving a dessert in which case share it with someone. Did you know that you do not really need to eat the complete dessert. The first five spoons are enough to satisfy your palate and cravings both. After that, it just becomes boring to eat the ice cream or pastry.
Have hot water, herbal tea, lemon tea, turmeric milk, coffee (as long as it does not affect your sleep system) or anything hot. It calms down the digestive system with the much needed warmth to start the digestive process and helps you sleep.
Are you a healthy eater? How do you try to eat healthy while eating out? What all food options or cuisines do you prefer? Share your tips for healthy and mindful eating!