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How to deal with eating out...

I'm 16 and sometimes I go out to eat with my friends. Our favorite places to eat include Applebees, Friday's, Pizzaria Uno, etc.

The only problem is that I have no idea what to get to eat there without feeling like I'm breaking some crazy taboo. Everywhere I look there's cheese, fried, oil, grease, etc. Applebee's has a new weightwatcher's menu, which is great. But any general rules people follow when they go out to eat? Also, I found out that a lot of the salads aren't that healthy either, so I'm completely lost =[

Thu. Jun 14, 3:51pm

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Chain restaurants usually have nutritional information on their websites for at least the "light menu" items (Friday's, Applebee's, Ruby Tuesdays) and sometimes everything.

- Order an appetizer instead of a main course for your meal.
- Substitute vegetables for fries.
- Share a dish with a friend who's also weight-conscious or not that hungry.
- Avoid anything "fried" or "sauteed".
- No cream or butter-based sauces.
- Never order ribs - they are diabolically diet-destroying like nothing else.
- Use oil & vinegar for salad dressing, and measure out the oil with a teaspoon (45 cals).

Thursday, June 14, 2007, 5:27 PM

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Dotti's Weight Loss Zone has info on over 500 restaurants. The nutritional data is given in calories and WW points.


Thursday, June 14, 2007, 5:34 PM

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Yeah - I can't imagine being 16 and ordering the grilled salmon with steamed veggies when I 'm out with my friends! How great that it's even a part of your consciousnes! I was ordering the giant Taco Bell taco salads (with extra meat and cheese) with abandon well into my 20's!

As pp said, there are decent choices to be made if you do a little research. Let your friends know about your goals so they support your choices instead of riding you to get a burger and fries like the rest of them!

Good luck and good for you!

Thursday, June 14, 2007, 6:25 PM

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I try to check out a restaurant's website first for nutritional information and choose what I would like to eat. If I want to get something that is high in calories (like ribs) I plan ahead and really eat well for the surrounding days and really exercise so it doesn't impact my weight too much.

I just checked out that website and it is awesome! Thank you so much for sharing!

Thursday, June 14, 2007, 6:36 PM

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original poster here =)

The advice all sounds great, but how do you actually get yourselves to order it? It's a little hard sometimes when all my friends are ordering the burgers and the nachos, etc. Any mental tricks? I know it sounds a little stupid, almost like..shut up and eat the god damn salad! But sometimes I can't get myself to just make the healthier choice =(

Rawr at high fat food.

Thursday, June 14, 2007, 10:38 PM

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My trick with any food that's calling my name like there's no tomorrow - I remember - THERE'S NO SHORTAGE OF FOOD!! You could get a burger and fries, potato skins, whatever you want practically 24/7. You've had it all before, you know what it tastes like and if you want it tomorrow, you can have it. Tonight - you're ordering the g-damned salad, easy on the bacon, lite dressing on the side! (just research those salads - sometimes they're no better than the burger!)

Also, as your friends are eating their 1000 calorie burgers and 800 calorie fries - this after their 1500 calorie nachos - just think of how much better you're treating your body ;) You won't be gaining any weight!

And, no, it's not stupid! Why do you think half of us are here?? ha.

Thursday, June 14, 2007, 11:09 PM

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Another option is to only eat half of your food and either have the rest boxed up for the next day or just have them take it away. You can still order something "bad" on occasion, so as long as you make healthy choices the rest of the time you can splurge at a restaurant once a week with friends.

Thursday, June 14, 2007, 11:34 PM

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Aw, I'm glad I joined this XD The advice sounds great and I can't wait to try it! Thanksss =)

Friday, June 15, 2007, 1:16 AM

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Let us know what you end up ordering next time you go out with your friends!

Friday, June 15, 2007, 9:44 AM

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When I'm out and want a burger, I order a burger. I ask for steamed veggies on the side instead of fries, most of the time, too. But, I do not order a "bacon double cheeseburger with sauteed mushrooms (sauteed in BUTTER!) and extra cheese." I just order a burger, or maybe a cheeseburger. Then, when it comes, I take the meat off of the bun and eat it with a fork and knife. Just taking off the bun saves at least 200 calories at a restaurant like that. And I get the burger part, which I like.

As for salads, as long as they're not loaded with cheese or bacon or fried chicken, etc., if you order a light dressing on the side, instead of regular on top of the salad, and just dip your bites into the dressing a little, they're actually all pretty healthy. And you're filling up on veggies. So you can eat and eat and eat!

Friday, June 15, 2007, 10:47 AM

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What really helps me is to ask myself WHY my friends are so critical of me eating healthy. Really, when it comes down to it, it's because they feel GUILTY watching you eating a healthy salad while they're stuffing their faces with fries. They mask their guilt by saying things like, "IS that all you're going to get?" or "Come on, live a little! Just one burger won't kill you!"

Just keep in mind that as they watch you eat healthy, they are mentally kicking themselves for not doing the same.

Sunday, March 29, 2009, 4:37 PM

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