Wednesday, July 9, 2014

How to eat out and eat less carbs.

As you know I'm not a big fan of cooking.  So, I tend to eat out a lot.  People wonder how I eat out and stay healthy as a Diabetic.  There's a myth that Diabetics shouldn't eat out.  I say it's how you order that matters.  That's why I have several tricks that help me eat healthy.

1)  Ask for a half portion of carb foods.  I've done this with full dinners (like Spaghetti) and with side dishes (like potatoes) too.

2)  Choose upscale fast food instead of drive-thru.  There are a lot of restaurants that let you pick your toppings etc....  They have a wide variety of options and they put it together as you ask for items.  I usually ask for a small scoop or half scoop of carb-filled items and then ask for double meat and veggies.  This cuts my carbs and I get some really good food in the process.  It's still a meal that fills me up too!

3) Add an extra side of veggies - I think most people are aware that you can change out a side of fries for a vegetable.  However, I learned early on that I wasn't eating enough carbs when I did that and I also wasn't filling up.  So, I've started ordering an additional vegetable. Yes, I order the obligatory salad and I make sure I have enough carb servings to make a meal.  Then I order an extra non-carb vegetable, so I can eat the right portion of carbs and fill up.  The more non-carb veggies I eat, the better my numbers are.  So, ordering extra helps.

4)  Order a side of something special.  Spaghetti is another of my weaknesses.  It's hard for me to go Italian and NOT order it.  When I do order spaghetti, I ask for a "side dish," "small order," or "lunch portion".  Now, if I"m familiar with the restaurant and know even a small order will be more than I should eat, I still ask them to give me half!  The wait staff usually look at me like I have two heads, but I tell them I'll pay for a small order, just give me half of what a small order is.  They usually bring it, put it down on the table and look at me that all you wanted?  I usually look at them and say; "That's perfect!  Thank you." They let it go, but they still think I'm weird.

5)  Go ahead be weird.  I have accepted that I have to order most things "special order" and my requests are weird.  I get that wait staff are confused and don't understand.  I don't care.  It's my body and I'm going to do what I need to do to keep it healthy.  If they don't like it, then that's their problem.  Go ahead be weird.  In fact, make it a point to earn nicknames or get people to tease you about the way you eat.  Then proudly own that you are doing something different and brag about.  Watch as other people start joining in.  You'll be surprised!

Yes, I'm a Diabetic.  Yes, I can eat out and keep my numbers in their optimal range.  I just order to fit what I need.  What are your eating out tricks?

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