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Staying Healthy When Eating At A Restaurant
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By Mazzenga Daniels
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By Mazzenga Daniels
Sept. 6, 2013 5:13 p.m.

Now that you've transferred yourself to a healthier way of living, you can begin taking it on the road. It might alarm you at first to think about eating out. Especially if you read about all the fat, calories, and sugar contained in fast foods. We decided to consult myplate.gov for some tips on how to stay healthy when going out. It is part of life after all.

  • Begin with a glass of water, unsweetened tea, or low fat/fat-free milk. Add a salad packed with vegetables and greens & dressing on the side to that and you've got yourself a great appetizer!

  • If ordering the sandwich, be sure to get the whole wheat/grain option. Try for meals with mostly vegetables. Stir-fries, kabobs and pasta with tomato sauce are wonderful options. Look for steamed, grilled, or broiled dishes vs. fried or sauteed.

  • When choosing a size for your meal, go for a “small” or “medium” choice (think lunch size instead of dinner size). This goes for your main course, any drinks that aren't water, and dessert. You can use an appetizer or side dish as your meal if needed also, or share a main meal with a friend. You can also ask for a to go container to come out with your food. This way you are able to put ½ into it before you even begin.

  • To keep calories, fat and sugar low, stay away from ordering creamy sauces or gravy dishes. Don't add butter, or if you need to add only a little. Order fruit for dessert as much as possible to increase your nutrient intake.

  • If you're going to be out for a while, get into the habit of taking fresh and healthy snacks with you. Options include nuts, fruit, veggies, or low-fat string cheese.

    As you can see, you aren't as limited as you may at first think when going out. There are so many ways to modify so you don't have to miss out on anything. This doesn't give you a free pass though. This is for situations when you really can't avoid going out. For the healthiest lifestyle, try to eat at home as much as possible so you know what is going into your food. For more information, please call the Wayne County YMCA at (570) 253-2083, or visit us online at ymcawayne.com.

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