Getting your recommended daily intake of nutrients is not always easy. Between work, school, and other obligations, finding time to cook healthy meals can be challenging. And when you do have time to cook, the temptation of takeout or fast food may feel like a more convenient option. But eating out doesn’t have to mean compromising your health. With some planning and research, you can almost always find nutritious options when eating out. Whether at a fast-food restaurant, diner, or even an ethnic eatery, you no longer have to settle for unhealthy choices! This article will teach some easy tips and tricks for making healthier food swaps when eating out at different establishments.
Swap for whole grains
One of the easiest swaps you can make when eating out is to replace refined grains with whole grains. Whole grains contain nutrients like B vitamins, iron, zinc, magnesium, and fiber. When grains are refined, the nutrients and fiber are stripped away. When grains are refined, the nutrients and fiber are stripped away. This means that refined grains have very little nutritional value.
Furthermore, eating whole grains has been linked to a reduced risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. While eating out, try to look for places that use whole grains in their dishes. This can be as simple as asking for a side of whole grains rather than a side of white rice.
Go for steamed veggies.
Eating healthy while eating out can be challenging, especially if the restaurant doesn’t have many healthy options on the menu. One good way to make healthier choices is to swap out fried and creamy dishes for steamed vegetables. Steaming vegetables retain their nutrients, making them a healthier option than eating fried or creamy dishes. Plus, you also avoid the unhealthy fats that are often found in creamy dishes. So, if vegetable dishes are offered as a side, order them. And if not, try to find a dish on the menu that doesn’t include cream or lots of butter.
Try vegan alternatives
Vegan dishes are often plant-based and packed with healthy fats, like avocado, olive oil, and nuts. If you’re trying to eat more plant-based foods, you may look for plant-based alternatives to standard dishes. For example, you may find healthy burgers that are plant-based instead of a beef burger or vegan mac and cheese instead of a creamy pasta dish. These vegan alternatives are often lower in calories and fat than the original dishes, making them healthier options. Vegan alternatives also avoid certain ingredients that may not be as healthy, such as butter or cream. So, when eating out, look for vegan alternatives to meat, cheese, and creamy sauces.
Ask for dressing on the side.
Salads are often seen as healthy and nutritious, but the dressing can add a lot of unnecessary calories and fat. Dressing can be high in sodium and contain high-fat and high-sugar ingredients. A straightforward way to make a salad healthier is to ask for the sauce on the side. This way, you can control the amount of dressing on the salad and make it healthier. You can also ask if they have an option without dressing. Many restaurants will use vinegar and oil as a dressing, which is more nutritious than other options.
This article has shown you that you don’t have to sacrifice your health when eating out. You can make healthier choices without feeling restricted with a few simple swaps. From whole grains to vegan alternatives, there are many ways you can eat healthfully at restaurants. With these tips, you can make the most of your dining experience and still eat healthily. So, don’t settle for unhealthy options when eating out. Instead, try these healthy food swaps to make the most of your dining experience.