Watch Out for “Healthy” Restaurant Meals

Making the decision to live a healthy lifestyle is important. Most people opt to do this by sticking to eating a healthy diet in order to reap the variety of health benefits.

One challenge that many people face when it comes to eating healthy is knowing exactly what to eat when dining out. Some people think that opting for the “healthier” item, such as a salad instead of pizza, is the best choice, but that’s not always the case. Oftentimes what you assume to be healthy at a restaurant truly isn’t. Check out these tips to help you watch out for “healthy” restaurant meals.

Stuffed Salads

As mentioned above, the first choice people usually make when deciding to eat out is to opt for the salad. While this may seem like a good idea, it could be worse for you. Most salads at restaurants are twice or three times the size of a normal salad, which means you’re already over eating and likely consuming more calories than you would want. Most salads are also filled with a variety of items that could be high in calories or just bad for your health. To top it off, when you slather on the dressing, you are certainly eating something bad for you.

If you want to enjoy a salad at a restaurant, you have a few different options. First, you can ask for a to-go box right away and put half of the salad in it as soon as it arrives. This way, you won’t be tempted to eat more than you should. Another option is to go for no dressing or to ask for dressing on the side. This will allow you to control how much dressing you consume. You should also make sure to choose a salad that contains healthy items. Avoid those with breaded chicken, crushed tortilla chips and even avocado, as those are all common salad items that aren’t good for you.


When it comes to eating healthy, chicken is a popular choice. However, you need to be careful when ordering it at a restaurant. Make sure you opt for grilled chicken instead of chicken that has been fried or even sautéed. Fried chicken is extremely fatty, and sautéed chicken is usually doused in a variety of butters, oil, and fats that aren’t good for you. If the chicken comes with a sauce, ask for it on the side. This will allow you to control how much sauce you use, which is usually not healthy anyway. If given the choice of side, you should also make sure to choose a vegetable instead of fries, potatoes, or other starches.

Whole Grains

If you’re out for breakfast, you should consider indulging on something made of whole grains, flax seed, or even oats instead of doughnuts, pastries, or any other sugar-filled dish. Not only will you reduce the amount of calories you consume, but you’ll also reduce your risk of indigestion symptoms. The Institute for Vibrant Living states that good sources of natural fiber are great for your digestive health as well as the rest of your body. They usually don’t contain any harmful additives either, making them much better than sugary cereals or breakfast bars.

If you opt for a whole grain item, you can sweeten the deal with a side of fresh fruit. This will allow you to complement the whole grain with something sweet without wreaking havoc on your diet.

So just because you’re on a diet doesn’t mean you need to avoid restaurants altogether. By using these tips, you’ll be able to make smarter decisions when it comes to what to eat. Plus, if possible, try to opt for a restaurant that offers a lighter menu option for those who may be watching their weight. This can  help make the decision-making process easier on you.