Summer is the time for going out and having fun whether you are travelling or on vacation. When you're eating out or buying food that has been prepared for you, it's often easier to have more fat, salt and calories than you realise.

Here are a few simple things you can do to make your meal healthier when you are away from home or simply when dining out.

Practical Tips

The simplest but not always the easiest tip is to remember that you don't need to clear your plate! Ideally try to eat slowly and stop when you're full. Even when you're out, try to choose the healthier options; here are a few tips to get you started.

Go for Try to cut down

 

Dishes that are:

  • Grilled
  • Boiled
  • Poached
  • Steamed
  • Stir-fried
Dishes that are:
  • Battered
  • Deep-fried
Bakeries: Whole wheat bread Bakeries: Croissants and pastries
Desserts: Fruit and fruit salad or sorbet Desserts: Cakes, puddings, biscuits, sweets, cream and ice cream
Sauces based on: Tomatoes and Vegetables Sauces based on: Cream and Cheese
Salads & Vegetables: Served plain. If you want some dressing, ask for any combination of lemon, vinegar, mustard and some oil. Order it to be served on the side so you can add it yourself Salads and Vegetables: Served with butter or mayonnaise sauces such as coleslaw


 

If you can't tell from the menu how a dish is cooked then don't hesitate to ask.

Watch your food portions!

As well as choosing healthier options, it's also important to avoid eating too much. This isn't always as easy as it sounds, so here are some common tips that you might find helpful:

  • Try not to have lots of bread or other nibbles before your meal arrives
  • If your meal doesn't come with vegetables, order some as a side dish or have a salad with your meal or as a starter
  • Have a glass of water with your meal
  • Choose a meal made with complex carbohydrates, vegetables, lean meat, skinless chicken or healthy baked fish
  • You could try sharing a starter or dessert with a friend
  • When you're ordering a variety of dishes try not to order too many
  • Try waiting until you've eaten your main course before you order a dessert. You never know, you might already be full.

Healthier desserts

If you are craving sweets, there are lots of healthier options that you can choose from. Fruits are an especially good choice and can count towards your five servings a day, which you should be aiming for whether it's fresh, frozen, tinned or dried.

You could try:

  • Seasonal or exotic fresh fruit salad
  • A slice of melon
  • Baked apples
  • Fruit sorbet
  • Fruit-flavored yoghurt

Good to Remember:

As summer is the time for relaxation and fun, there’s no harm in having a treat from time to time. Just remember to have it in moderation and try to incorporate it in your diet in a smart way.

You can always enjoy your food and at the same time, control your portions, so have fun and enjoy your meal!

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