When ordering food at a restaurant or ordering in, it’s can be an overwhelming feeling to be stuck in between wanted to enjoy your favourite foods but also staying on track. Here we’re going to share with you some tips and tricks to make your experience healthier, but also allow you to enjoy the foods you love.
1- Chinese: Most Chinese takeaway options are made with stir-frying and batter which requires using high amounts of oil. When thinking about potential macro breakdowns, you might end up eating higher percentages of fats and carbs; lower protein in general. It’s better to limit and even cut down on fried rice, spring rolls, chicken/fish/meat baked with sticky sauces - sweet & sour, battered chicken, prawn crackers. Here are the healthier options; vegetable stir-fry, steamed rice, plain noodles, steamed dumplings, steamed fish, chicken chop suey, baked salmon, Moo Goo Gai Pan.
2- Indian: Creamy spicy curries can be the best option for take out in colder weather, especially dipping garlic naan to curries- yum! Even though it’s so delicious, mostly it’s the fat we’re consuming with the sauce. It might be better to consider dishes cooked with grilling technique - such as Tandoori dishes - as the healthiest option to go with- lower fat and calories. Try to cut down on masala, korma (creamy curries) , naan bread, bhajis. Choose more from tomato-based curries, plain rice, roti, Tandoori dishes.
3-Italian: Creamy chicken Alfredo or Spaghetti Bolognese, no one can say NO to traditionally cooked delicious Italian pasta. We also shouldn’t forget about the pizza. The good news is you don’t have to deprive yourself of those tastes and still enjoy Italian cuisine by looking for lower fat sauces, thin-crust pizza, etc. Cutting down fried options such as chicken parm or eggplant parm, thick and stuffed pizza bases, fried calamari and stuffed pasta such as ravioli will help you to lower overall calories. Instead of those choose more grilled protein sources, enjoy thin crust pizza, minestrone soup, bruschetta, seafood, lean meats.
4- Mexican: This delicious and flavourful cuisine is a go-to for most of us! Let’s swap high-calorie and fat choices with leaner options. Staying away from refried beans, cheesy dips, hard-shell tortillas, high-fat sour cream, high-fat cheddar cheese would be a good step to take when ordering out. Choose more burrito bowls, lean meats ( poultry, fish) or beans, tomato salsa, guacamole, and skipping cheddar and sour cream or choosing low-fat options would be healthier.
Also, don’t forget that nutritional information is available on some restaurants either on their menu or website. In addition to that, always keep in mind that those calories and macros can not be 100 % accurate so it’s better to underestimate the protein and overestimate carbs & fats when tracking macros.
At the end of the day, we're all about balance. So if you find yourself consuming different traditional cuisines regularly, this guide is something to stick to. However, we also want you to treat yourself. If it's been ages since you've had a nice Italian meal and you're out with friends, enjoy it! Get the three-cheese gnocchi!