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Eating Out on the Atkins Diet

Are you on the Atkins or low carb diet and planning on heading out to a restaurant? Here are tips and techniques to help you have fun, and stay healthy!

Read the Whole Menu
Accept right off that most of the menu will be unhealthy. That's just the way things are in restaurants - they give you fattening foods. It seems in some restaurants that every single item either comes with bread, is coated in bread, or has pasta as its base. However, if you read each item, you may find quite a few choices that involve meat, fish, veggies, and fruit. You might find that by pairing together two healthy appetizers you can create a delicious meal.

Have Salads or a Salad Bar
You don't have to eat a like a rabbit! Most restaurants offer a variety of salad types, some that are amazingly tasty and filling. Ruby Tuesday stands out in my mind as having an excellent salad bar. I could eat there for weeks and have a different concoction every day. Even if this isn't your entire meal, have a salad to help meet your fruit/veggie daily needs.

Substitute out Potatoes
Talk about overkill - a recent trip to a restaurant found that just about every dish had some form of potato with it - either fried, mashed, or baked! Ask for a vegetable substitution. With the millions of diabetics out there, this is a standard request to make and one they should honor. You could be delighted with your replacement. If they have no way to substitute, ask your waitress to leave the potatoes off the dish. That way they're out of sight, out of mind.

Have some Wine
The better something tastes, the more likely you are to slow down and savor it. Wine helps bring out the natural flavors in your meal. Wine is also low in carbs, usually having just a few grams of carbs per glass! So order a glass of wine and take your meal in a leisurely fashion. You'll find that you fill up with less food, and don't even look at the dessert menu.

Drink Lots of Water
Make sure you have a glass of water with your meal if at all possible, and keep it filled. The water will help you digest your meal better, and also help the nutrients reach their destinations better.

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