Probably the worst kind of high, blood glucose spikes, are a common by-product of an unadulterated food binge. High calorie and carb foods can cause your blood glucose to shoot up and that’s not something you want with diabetes. Maintaining normal blood glucose levels isn’t easy but it has to be done!
No matter how much you love cooking at home, eating out is inevitable! Birthdays, anniversaries, graduations or even simple busy weekends can warrant a meal at a restaurant which may not serve food which fits with your healthy eating plan.
Here’s how you can eat out and still maintain normal blood glucose levels:
1. Plan Ahead
Share your situation with your friends and family to make sure you can decide on a restaurant where there are viable food options for you.
Select somewhere that has yummy low-fat, low-calorie options. Grilled and baked meats like chicken or fish are a good protein option or you could scope out a place which offers a range of salads. It’s a good idea to stay away from “all you can eat” buffets, brunches & happy hours.
2. Cut back for the rest of the day
Can’t get out of the birthday dinner in the evening? Skip the sandwich and chips for lunch and opt for a salad instead. If you know you will be eating out at one meal, try to eat lighter meals at other times that day. You should also try to have a small snack before you go out so you aren’t hungry.
3. Do your research!
Think about what you want to order in advance. You can look for the restaurant’s menu online or while you are waiting to be seated. If you’re going to a dinner party, try to bring a healthy dish to share.
4. Know how your food is prepared
Ask your server or host how the dish you’re about to order or eat is prepared and make special requests if necessary. Replace your side of fries with a side salad or a baked potato. Request your server to reduce the amount of oil in your food for a healthier meal.
5. Pay attention to portion size
Ask your server about the size of the portion that’s served and request that you be served a smaller portion or share with a friend. Ask for the dressing, sauce, or spreads to be served on the side.
6. Take charge at a restaurant
At the restaurant make sure you don’t slip. It’s easy to give in to your temptations so try to order first to avoid being influenced by others.
Limit appetisers like bread, peanuts, or chips. When you start to feel full ask for your plate to be removed so you don’t over eat and pack the rest of your food to take home.
7. Take it easy on the starters
Skipping starters will help you to avoid extra calories and will make sure you aren’t full when your main meal arrives. Starters like bread and chips, even if eaten in a small amount, can cause you to overeat and throw you over your calorie limit for the day.
Try to convince your friends or family to not order starters and go straight for the main meal. If you must order a starter, go for a light salad or light soup.
8. Take charge at a buffet
A buffet is usually a place where people overeat without thinking of consequences. Before you serve yourself at a buffet, look through the options and decide what you want. Choose more healthier options and serve yourself smaller portions of fried, creamy or other high carb foods like pasta or rice.
Use a smaller plate, like a dessert plate to serve yourself and restrict yourself to only one round of food. Skip the seconds to make sure you don’t over eat. Make some compromises like“I’d rather have the dessert so I’ll skip the appetizer.”
9. Avoid high calorie words on the menu
Stay away from high-fat, high-calorie items on the menu. Look out for words like:
Remember that food preparation is key. Healthy options include: