Dr. Natasha Withers: Eating out at a restaurant can be a pleasure, but if you're not careful, it can be one of the least healthiest things we do. Here are some tips on how to keep dining out from taking a toll on your body. Let's start with portion size.
Do you know that most restaurants serve twice as much food and some serve up to eight times more food than the recommended portions? This adds up to a lot of extra fat, calories and salt. Instead of cleaning your plate, manage your portion intake, by splitting a meal with a friend, ordering an appetizer as a main course or taking half your dinner home. Definitely avoid all-you-can-eat specials.
After portion size watch menu choice. Avoid fried foods and cream sauces and don't be afraid to make special requests. Request salad dressing on the side and skip the mayo. Instead of a heavy dish, request vegetables or whole grain roll and be sensible about dessert and alcohol, which just adds empty calories.
If you like to enjoy them as part of a nice meal, split a dessert with your dining companion and have just one drink. Finally, eat mindfully. Slow down, savor each bite. This gives your body time to register that it's eating and helps you eat less.
So remember, when dining out, eat slowly, eat less and choose carefully from the menu. I'm Dr. Natasha, live well!