Dining Out Diet Primer: Staying Happy and Healthy

Dining out can be every dieter’s dilemma of the day.
How do you keep up with the diet when the restaurant only serves gourmet platters and over-the-top desserts? As tempting as it may be to just order the daily special and declare it is not a diet day, there are ways to scale back and keep those diet resolutions.

If you’re heading out to lunch with the boss or enjoying dinner at your favorite family restaurant, don’t sabotage your healthy diet, instead use these tips:

1. Start with soup. A vegetable broth-based soup is a simple way to fill up on fewer calories and enjoy a great meal. Hot soup is a nourishing mini-meal in itself and can fill you up, fast. Start with a bowl of hearty soup then follow it with light lunch fare for a well-balanced, satisfying meal.

2. Eat protein first. Whether you’ve ordered grilled chicken or roast turkey, chow down on the lean proteins first to prevent a post-meal energy slump. Protein eaten on an empty stomach will keep your energy levels steady and may even reduce your appetite – this makes it much easier to get through the afternoon without snacking on extra treats.

3. Dressing on the side. Even the low-fat dressing you see on the menu can have up to 15 grams of fat per serving, and most of it is probably unsaturated. Steer clear of this diet saboteur by ordering dressing on the side so you can dip your veggies slightly in the concoction for a little flavor. Or you can order safe dressing like balsamic vinaigrette or lemon juice and olive oil for a healthy splash of flavor.

4. Fall in love with red. From soups to pasta sauces, stick with tomato-based dishes to scale back on fat and calories. Marinara sauce and tomato broths are a much healthier choice than the rich and creamy sauces used for clam chowders, Fettuccine Alfredo and even pizza toppings.

5. Enjoy fresh fruit for dessert. Restaurants often serve fresh fruit cups or fruit sides on the children’s menu but may also offer a small bowl for dessert. Enjoy some fresh fruit to curb that sweet tooth and skip the rich dessert platter to save a few hundred calories from your daily calorie log. If you must have something from the dessert menu, consider ordering it ‘to go’ to store in a cooler or lunch tote and enjoy it in small bites the rest of the day or week.

Chennai City: Restaurant Directory


Shiv

Health & Fitness: “Take Advantage of Your Lunch Hour”

Is the daily, 9-5 office schedule the reason for those pounds around the waistline? Sitting behind a desk all day puts you at high-risk for an unhealthy lifestyle, especially when you’re dealing with all those extra business lunches, snack attacks when stress levels run high, and only a ten-minute break to get up, walk around and stretch.

If you’re not an early riser for the gym each day, or are wiped out after a day at the office, making the best of lunch hour may be the only way to squeeze in a workout. Consider these simple exercises for a real power-hour over lunch:

1. The Stairwell Calorie-Burner.
Head to the stairwell for a quick lower body workout that’s sure to kick the metabolism into high gear. Walking up and down stairs at a steady pace can give your glutes, hamstrings and calves a quick aerobic fix, improve circulation and even elevate the heart rate for a mini-cardio routine.

2. The Parking Lot Circuit.
Head to the office parking lot for a speedwalking routine up and down the lanes. Just steer clear of traffic as you weave in and out of parked cars; this routine can help increase your heart rate and take those energy levels up a notch.

3. The Hallway Power Walk.
If the office building has long hallways, consider trekking across the buildings and departments for a quick power-walking session. Just maintain a steady pace as you wave to fellow coworkers. You can also use this one as a way to greet departments you otherwise would never see.

4. The Lunchtime Lift.
If you can get to a local gym or fitness center, try a quick weightlifting routine that targets core muscle groups in the arms, legs and back. Even 15-20 minutes of focused lifting can elevate the heart rate, boost the metabolism and ward off hunger for hours afterwards.

5. Jog Around the Block.
Grab those running shoes and change into your workout gear for a quick jog or run around the block at the office. If the office has a workout room, even better. Just jump onto the treadmill for a quick 15-20 minute cardio blast that will help clear your mind, reduce stress and keep you focused for the rest of the day.

%d bloggers like this: