- Eating Out the Healthy Way Center
- Fat-Fighting Foods Slideshow
- Food Frauds Slideshow Pictures
- Take the Diet & Nutrition Quiz
Eating Out & Entertaining
Enjoy delicious dining without sabotaging your diet.
By Kathleen Zelman, MPH, RD/LD
WebMD Weight Loss Clinic - Feature
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD
Quick GuidePortion Control Tips: Lose Weight and Stick to Your Diet
"Would you like that 'supersized'?" is a common question at fast-food restaurants. The large portions we're served when eating out at restaurants and take-out establishments can foil any healthy diet or weight loss program. The good news is that eating out healthfully has never been easier.
Whether you're on the road, in an airport, or in your neighborhood, you'll find that nearly all restaurants offer healthy choices for discriminating diners. When eating out, you can almost always find a nutritious salad, grilled chicken sandwich, or cup of soup that will satisfy your hunger without excess calories. (Just watch out for "all you can eat" buffets that tempt you into eating more than you should.)
At restaurants, "have it your way" -- ask for the food to be prepared the way you like it. And be picky when scanning the offerings at parties, picnics, or barbeques. When eating with friends at a party or a picnic, your best bet is bring a healthy dish to share. That way, you can be sure there's something nutritious for you to eat.
Experts offer the following tips to help you make the most nutritious and healthy choices when you're eating out:
- Have sauces served on the side.
- Choose light salad dressings or vinaigrettes, served on the side.
- Go for foods that are baked, broiled, roasted, grilled -- any preparation other than fried is the best choice.
- Select broth-based soups.
- Have tomato or vegetable toppings on pasta.
- Go easy on the cheese.
- Limit bread, chips, or whatever is in the basket while you await your meal.
- Order fresh fruit or fruit sorbet for dessert.
- Choose grilled chicken or lean meat sandwiches.
- Hold the french fries; substitute a side salad (easy on the dressing).
- Skip the casseroles unless you know what they contain.
- Choose simply prepared foods without lots of extra ingredients and calories.
- Enjoy as many simply prepared vegetables as you like.
- Keep portions small.
- Avoid mindless hand-to-mouth eating.
- Enjoy a salad and an appetizer in place of an entree, or take home half your meal for tomorrow's lunch.
Published February 2006.
©2006 WebMD Inc. All rights reserved.
Daily Health News
Nutrition and Healthy Eating Resources
Subscribe to MedicineNet's Weight Loss/Healthy Living Newsletter
Top Eating Out & Entertaining Related Articles
alirocumabAlirocumab (Praluent) ia man-made prescription drug prescribed in addition to exercise, diet, and statin drugs to reduce LDL cholesterol levels adults with heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia or adults with heart problems related to excess cholesterol in the body. Alirocumab is the first member of a new class of drugs called (PCSK9) proprotein convertase subtilisin kexin type 9 inhibitors. Side effects, drug interactions, dosing, storage, and pregnancy and breastfeeding safety information is provided.
Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) OverviewCongestive heart failure (CHF) refers to a condition in which the heart loses the ability to function properly. Heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, myocarditis, and cardiomyopathies are just a few potential causes of congestive heart failure. Signs and symptoms of congestive heart failure may include fatigue, breathlessness, palpitations, angina, and edema. Physical examination, patient history, blood tests, and imaging tests are used to diagnose congestive heart failure. Treatment of heart failure consists of lifestyle modification and taking medications to decrease fluid in the body and ease the strain on the heart. The prognosis of a patient with congestive heart failure depends on the stage of the heart failure and the overall condition of the individual.
Take the Diabetes QuizTake the Diabetes Quiz and learn the causes, signs, symptoms, and types of this growing epidemic. What does diabetes have to do with obesity and diet? Learn about life as a diabetic.
Diabetic Diet for Type 2 Diabetes
A type 2 diabetes diet or a type 2 diabetic diet is important for blood sugar (glucose) control in people with diabetes to prevent complications of diabetes. There are a variety of type 2 diabetes diet eating plans such as the Mediterranean diet, Paleo diet, ADA Diabetes Diet, and vegetarian diets.Learn about low and high glycemic index foods, what foods to eat, and what foods to avoid if you have type 2 diabetes.
Fast Food BreakfastNo matter which fast-food chain you visit, high-fat and high-calorie breakfast choices abound. But healthier fast-food menu options do exist. See some of the best and worst foods at several major chains.
Fattening Fall FoodsLearn how to keep your diet in check this fall. Look at some of the season's most fattening foods, along with tips on how to avoid or improve them. You can make it through Oktoberfest and Halloween to Thanksgiving without gaining a pound!
Fattening Summer FoodsSummertime living may be easy, but if you're not careful, summer's fattening foods can really pack on the pounds. Discover the summer foods to avoid for weight loss.
Portion Distortion QuizAre your portions deceiving you? Take the Food Portion Distortion Quiz to find out how and why gigantic portions trick you into eating more than reasonable amounts of food!
Gluten-Free DietStarting a gluten free diet? Get the facts about gluten free foods -- with tips on what to avoid, what to enjoy, and delicious, gluten-free alternatives to keep you healthy and happy.
Heart Attack and Atherosclerosis Prevention
Heart disease and heart attacks can be prevented by leading a healthy lifestyle with diet, exercise, and stress management. Symptoms of heart attack in men and women include chest discomfort and pain in the shoulder, neck, jaw, stomach, or back. Women experience the same symptoms as men; however, they also may experience:
- Extreme fatigue
- Pain in the upper abdomen
Leading a healthy lifestyle with a heart healthy low-fat diet, and exercise can help prevent heart disease and heart attack.
Obesity (Weight Loss)Obesity is the state of being well above one's normal weight. A person has traditionally been considered to be obese if they are more than 20% over their ideal weight. That ideal weight must take into account the person's height, age, sex, and build.
Orlistat (Xenical, alli) is a drug available in prescription and over-the-counter that promotes weight loss. Side effects include:
- Abdominal pain and discomfort
- Oily or fatty stools
- Gas (flatulence)
- Oily spotting on underwear
Drug interactions, dosing, and pregnancy and breastfeeding safety information should be reviewed prior to taking any OTC or prescription medication.
Prediabetes is a situation where a person's blood sugar levels are higher than they should be, but aren't high enough to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. There are no signs or symptoms of prediabetes. Some of the risk factors for prediabetes are
- high blood pressure,
- high cholesterol,
- heart disease,
- family history,
- poor diet, and
- lack of activity.
Diet changes along with other healthy lifestyle changes are important in treating prediabetes.
Stretch MarksStretch marks occur in the dermis, the elastic middle layer of skin that allows it to retain its shape. When the skin is constantly stretched, the dermis can break down, leaving behind stretch marks.
Superfoods QuizTake our Superfoods Quiz! Get to know how unprocessed, raw, organic foods and healthy drinks are rich in nutrients and dietary benefits.
Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is a condition in which a person's pancreas does not produce enough insulin to meet the needs of the body. Causes of type 2 diabetes are a sedentary lifestyle, eating excess sugar and carbohydrates, lack of exercise, being overweight, and genetics. Symptoms of type 2 diabetes are often subtle, but may include fatigue, urine odor, unintentional