RULES OF THUMB FOR EATING AT A RESTAURANT
• Skip the bread/chips for Appetizers
One point to emphasize is that the “most-bang-for-your-buck” tactic for tapping your fat energy stores is reducing the amount of carbs in your diet. Do yourself a favor and wait for the main course or order an appetizer that fits in with the style of eating we’re shooting for. This means chips or bread are probably not a good bet.
• Shoot for fish/lamb/beef (ideally grass-fed)/poultry as The Main
If protein isn’t the main component of the main course, it’s likely pasta or bread that will take up the majority of the plate (refer to first bullet point about reducing carbs). Ideally we want high fat and moderate protein to take the majority of our macro-nutrients. Fish and grass-fed meat (which will be rare at restaurants) are fantastic sources of omega-3 fatty acids (think of these as gold in the diet). Make these the center of a restaurant meal if you can, in place of the pasta.
• Order a salad or mixed veggies for The Side
Veggies should actually be the item which shows up most in your meals. Even order extra! This is going to be crucial for getting all the right micronutrients. Order butter or oil and vinegar for your dressing. Stay away from high-sugar dressing at all cost.
• Drink water for The Beverage
Hydration is absolutely key for our health, and it will even make you burn more calories (aim for lemon ice water if you can). Skip the alcohol if you can (which gets converted to toxins in the liver, making us feel like crap for the next workout day). If you’re going to order an alcoholic beverage, do it in moderation, and stay toward the hard liquor, with no sugar mixed in if possible. Avoid beer (high in carbohydrates) and sugary mixed drinks. Vodka-water or Scotch, neat or with rocks, is a good look if you can handle it.
• Skip The Dessert