Now more than ever, restaurants NEED our business. Most of us simply can't afford to eat out as often as we used to and restaurant owners are very happy to see us. They also want us to be happy so that we'll come back. This makes it even easier for you to "have it your way" when you dine out..
That means: be assertive when exploring the menu -- ask your server how items are prepared (fried? steamed? sauteed?) Don't be afraid to request that your chicken, fish and/or vegetables are prepared without added oil; ask to have them baked, broiled or grilled.
If you haven’t cut bread out of your diet completely, ask for whole grain rolls, crackers, tortillas (corn or whole wheat -- instead of white)
- Choose oatmeal or whole grain bagels for breakfast (over white bread or white bagels)
- Ask for brown rice instead of white rice whether ordering Chinese food or sushi
- Ask for whole grain pasta
- Ask for whole grain pizza crust
- Choose whole grains for your starch course when available instead of potatoes or white rice; (e.g. polenta, brown rice, wild rice, bulgur/Tabouleh
And if your favorite restaurant doesn’t offer any whole grain choices, keep asking! If enough customers are interested, you may be in for a surprise the next time you go back. Restaurants want to keep their customers happy and coming back -- make your desires known! Unless we request more nutritious whole grains when we dine out, refined grain products (white stuff) will likely remain the standard choice at most dining venues