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Have Your Cake... And Eat It Too

Contributed by: NAPSA

Simple Tips Help You Keep Your Waistline In While Dining Out (NAPSA) - Think you can't eat out at restaurants if you're on a weight loss program?
Have Your Cake... And Eat It Too
Or if you do, you'll be limited to a small garden salad...with dressing on the side?

Think again.

Dining out at restaurants and fast-food establishments is fine if you're trying to shed a few extra pounds. You can enjoy eating out with family and friends, and still savor many of your favorite dishes -even dessert. The key is to be on the "portion patrol" and to make wise menu choices.

Policing Your Portions

"The most important factor when dining out is portion size," said Jennifer Boyer, Jenny Craig's Program Development Dietitian. "The size of an average restaurant entree has doubled in the past 25 years, so you'll want to be sure to modify your choices accordingly."

According to Jenny Craig's Dining Out Guide, there are everyday visual cues that make it easy to create a correctly portioned meal. The meat in your meal, for example, should be approximately three ounces-the size of a deck of cards. Your potatoes or pasta should be the size of a small fist, and the amount of reduced-fat salad dressing you drizzle over your salad should equate to a nail polish bottle.Here are three other ways to avoid committing a "portion crime":

  • Share an entree with a friend

  • Choose a lowfat appetizer and side salad instead of an entree

  • For dessert, order one serving for everyone to share

Making The Most Of Your Menu

"Food selection is important as well," added Boyer. "If you choose a salad with lowfat dressing or fresh vegetables without butter, you can eat virtually as much as you want."

Boyer also suggests reading menus carefully to select items that are high in flavor, but low in calories and fat. Pick entrees and vegetables that are broiled, baked or grilled, and pass on anything labeled Alfredo, breaded, cheesy or creamy.

Words like jumbo, super-sized, deluxe and triple-decker should also set off alarms in your head. Menu items with these descriptions will most likely be two or three times larger than the proper portion size.

The good news is, by using visual cues to create properly portioned meals and paying attention to the wording of menu items, you can continue to lose weight while dining out with family and friends.


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