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Why Eating Out Is So Bad For Your Health

Nov 18, 2007
Eating out is a fun way to celebrate a birthday, anniversary, or other special occasion. However, eating out should not be a part of your regular diet. If you are attempting to lose weight or maintain a healthy lifestyle, it is almost impossible to do so if you are eating out on a regular basis.

Appetizers and rolls are the first reason why eating out is bad for your health. When you cook at home, you usually do not prepare additional appetizers to eat before the main course because it is more work, but waiters at a restaurant push the appetizers, which can easily add an additional 500+ calories to your meal depending on what you order and how much you eat, just so that they can cushion their tip and make the restaurant more money. Restaurants also provide free rolls with butter. Eating two rolls can add another 300 calories to your meal.

A seemingly healthy salad is the next disastrous course when eating out. A salad by itself is healthy, but many restaurants will add croutons, bacon bits, cheese, and fatty dressings to the lettuce and a couple other vegetables. The result is enough fat to fulfill your fat content for the entire day. If you're going to indulge in a salad, avoid the croutons altogether and opt for apple cider or balsamic vinegar or oil and vinigrette.

Between the appetizer, rolls, salad, and first round of drinks most people have already consumed more than they ever would by cooking a meal at home. The problem is that all of these items are pushed by the waiter or their eating companions, making it even more difficult for someone struggling with their diet to say no.

The main course finally comes and you thought you ordered something healthy, fish, and steamed veggies, but what they don't mention on the menu is that vegetables are almost always soaked in butter and the fish is covered with a high calorie sauce to disguise the fact that it has been overcooked.

The problem with eating out is that everything is so readily available with no work on your part. If given the choice most people don't want to spend the time to prepare a five course meal at home, this is reserved for holidays like Thanksgiving, but when presented with the opportunity for that five course meal without having to do any of the work involved it makes it all too easy for people to say yes.

You finish your meal and the waiter comes over and makes a point of asking if you'd like dessert. Then the waiter will chatter on about all of the desserts available, you think that if you split the dessert with someone else at the table it will keep you from consuming too many calories. The problem is that you have already consumed too many calories before the dessert menu has even been presented. Also, even if you do split a desert you can easily be consuming another 500 calories.

When all is said and done, your one meal out most likely contains more calories than you should be consuming in an entire day. It is best not to test your will power when it comes to your diet. The next time someone suggests eating out, quickly think of a delicious meal that can be cooked at home for a fraction of the calories. This will give you control over how your food is prepared, not to mention that eating at home will also save you hundreds of dollars per month.

If time constraints is the main reason why you like to eat out instead of in, you can plan and cook meals on a Sunday afternoon that will last you the entire week. Simply cook and freeze. When you are ready to eat, take your home cooked meal out of the freezer and reheat either over the stove or in the microwave. In five minutes you can have a healthy and filling meal for your entire family. And if you would rather not spend your Sunday afternoon in the kitchen all day, there are plenty of 5, 10 and 15 minute meal cookbooks, that will offer you quick and easy dining solutions.
About the Author
Scott White is owner of the corporations Exercise Ball Workout Videos NLP Certification and a href="http://www.fitnesscompetitionguide.com">Fitness Competitions
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