Dining Out University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service
Common Goals Healthy, delicious food Meals that fit our appetite Reasonable price Meals that meet individual needs
Can we achieve these goals and still eat out??? Yes, but it takes careful planning!
LARGE Portions Decreased appetite + less calories needed = smaller portions How to eat smaller portions: –“Senior” menu –Children’s menu –Split a meal with a friend –Take home ½ of the meal –Appetizer menu –Create your own plate –Lunch menu
Food at a Reasonable Cost Senior Discounts –10-15% savings –Offered certain days and/or times –Varying age qualifications Daily Specials
Have it Your Way! Ask wait person if special preparation requests are possible. Adjust meal to fit special diet needs. Substitute healthier menu items Soften the texture –Ask for softened vegetables Cooked longer –Ask for meat or vegetables to be cut My Way!
Sodium…A BIG Problem! Sodium –Listed on menu –Ask for no added salt –Don’t add salt at the table –Sprinkle pepper, lemon juice, or hot pepper sauce
Menu Descriptions to Avoid Fried Deep fried Crispy Batter-dipped Cheese sauce Golden brown Sautéed in oil or butter Au gratin Creamed
Added Touches You May Request To Be Removed Butter Salt Sour cream Mayonnaise “Special” sauce Salad dressing Cheese Bacon Nut topping
Words to Look For lettuce and tomato low fat or fat free salad dressing or mayonnaise vegetable poached grilled broiled stir fried light wine sauce
Balancing the Buffet Survey before you serve Use smallest plate possible Pile no thicker than deck of cards 1-2 Tablespoon portions – lots of white space Fill ¾ of plate full with lower calorie vegetables and fruits Sit far from buffet table Get dessert after you eat the rest
BBQ Healthy choices –White meat of chicken –Sides: Baked beans and corn Baked or sweet potato Tossed salad instead of cole slaw Don’t add sauce Sauce on the side
Italian Healthy options –Pastas with tomato based sauces Alfredo, parmigiana, and cream sauces tend to be high in fat and sodium –Primavera = vegetables –Soups: minestrone
Food-borne Illness Restaurant clean and good score on health report Order food well cooked; especially meats Food should be hot when served to you If taking food home refrigerate within 2 hours
Points to Remember Healthy, delicious, low-cost meals. Just takes a little planning! Look for senior discounts and specials. Order smaller portions or split a meal. Don’t be afraid to ask the wait person for adjustments to meals. Know what descriptions on menus mean and what healthier options are available!