Managing and Controlling your Diet while Eating Out

I have started working since a year and have to eat out in restaurants 3 times a day and I am gaining weight. I mostly eat butter paneer and other such stuff because nothing else is available. Can you suggest what to do to control my weight?

Weight control or weight reduction is all about making correct and healthy choices with your food. Butter paneer is one of the most fattening things you can eat so here are some suggestions for those eating out of restaurants.

Breakfast is best eaten in a South Indian restaurant and you could order rice idli or rava idli with sambar. Do not touch coconut chutney if you want to lose weight.Avoid all dosa’s,upma (khara bath), chow chow bath, and rice preparation like lemon rice, tamarind rice, pulao and bisibelebath. Rava dosa, Masala dosa and poori are too oily so avoid this too. Also buying some cornflakes and skimmed milk powder and keeping it in your room and eating it for breakfast is a good idea. Put 1 cup of flakes in a bowl, add 2 tablespoons of milk powder to it, 1 teaspoon of sugar and pour 1 cup hot water on to this and your breakfast is ready. So you can avoid the restaurant at least once a day. 2 slices of whole wheat bread with jam/sliced tomato(veggies) or a boiled egg, along with a glass of milk is also a good option. Eat a fruit like an apple or orange at 11a.m so that you are not too hungry by lunchtime.

At lunch you may eat a South Indian meal of rice, sambar, rasam, curds and vegetables. Avoid the ghee, fried papad/poori, vada, pickle, sweet and payasam that may be served with the meal. If North Indian, order Tandoori roti, dhal, dry sabji, curd and salad. If you are in a Continental restaurant, Pasta, vegetables, some beans like chickpeas, double beans, or sprouts, with a vegetable soup and plenty of salad is the ideal choice (a little cheese may be added to provide protein if the beans are not available). You may have tea/coffee at 4p.m and at 6 p.m. try to have a fruit or fruit juice, but not tiffin items like bajji, vada, masala dosa or chaat etc. at tea time. At tea time if you feel like eating something it is best to have a couple of biscuits like Marie or Digestive or a veg sandwich. Make sure that these snacks are eaten between 4 and 5 pm along with tea or coffee, as a tea time snack. If these snacks are eaten at 6.30 in the evening it will add to your dinner calories and the weight will increase. Cold coffee and milk shakes/lassi should be avoided as a lot of cream /ice cream is added to it. Regular coffee and tea are allowed 2-3 cups in a day (not more).

For dinner I would suggest you avoid rice and order the Tandoori roti or phulka (dry chapathi), dhal and a raita. Dhal is important in the night as it provides protein which will give you strength and keep you from hungry at night. Avoid the vegetable sabji or pallya at night. The sabji vegetable is usually oily and oily food gets stored as fat while you sleep at night. Please avoid sweets and desserts after your meals.

If you are a non-vegetarian, you may eat a chicken or fish with your lunch. This should not be deep fried. Try to order a chicken/fish curry and eat only the pieces along with roti and dhal. Avoid the gravy as gravies contain a lot of fat. You may also order Tandoori chicken/fish. Those trying to lose weight must strictly avoid eating the non-veg at night as Mait takes 4-8 hours to get digested and will be stored as fat while you sleep.

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