Dining out for Easter can include healthy choices

FALLBROOK – Men and women with an eye on shedding a few extra pounds might feel as though dining out at Easter is something their waistlines simply cannot afford. But many local restaurants recognize their customers’ growing desire for healthier fare.

In the greater Fallbrook area, people can expect to find a host of nutritional items on the menus and buffet offerings at many local restaurants, making dining out both a viable and healthy option for those who want to put money back into the community while enjoying a break from cooking a holiday meal.

Here are some suggestions:

• Peruse the ads of local restaurants for Easter choices. Many restaurants include their websites on their ads, where prospective diners can get more information about what will be available in order to make a healthy plan for the meal.

• Buffets are very popular for Easter dining. Today’s buffets generally include a variety of choices, many of which are attractive to those trying to keep their diets light.

• Don’t be afraid to ask questions. If you need to ask a question about the type of sauce that is used on an item, or whether an item is grilled, pan-fried, or baked, ask the server to check with the chef.

• Consider ordering off the menu, even if a buffet is offered. Ordering off the menu was a practice once reserved for bigwigs or restaurant regulars. But nowadays many restaurants recognize that some customers might be on restricted diets for medical reasons and are willing to work with their customers who still want to enjoy a meal out without putting their health in jeopardy. This way a sauce can be held, or substitutions could be requested.

• Share a meal. Have a reduced appetite or striving to keep a low calorie count? Order one entree and let the server know you plan to share the meal. You might have to pay a little extra to share the meal, but you won’t be eating as much. You might elect to order a second salad as a way to stretch the meal between two people in a healthy way.

• Don’t forget to eat regular meals. If you miss meals throughout the day, you are more likely to overeat at the restaurant. Be sure to eat a healthy breakfast and lunch or healthy snacks of fruits or vegetables before going out to dinner.

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