My answer: Yes And No.
Sure, you can’t consider your Chinese take-out as healthy but these days you can still find healthy food choices at restaurants, to-go spots, and even the grocery stores.
What are my 2 best tips that I can share for eating out?
1. Focus on Foods That Make You Feel Great
These are foods that give you a positive energy boost long after you eat them. Not the sweet, sugary, or processed foods that give you an artificial high. Getting nutrient dense foods into your belly will help you naturally crowd out the junk. Last week I shared foods for good moods – check out that blog here. Do your best to add these foods to the meal.
If you are getting take-out and taking it home, prepare a quick salad to accompany it. If you are eating out at a restaurant, get your veggies as a side, in a non-dairy soup, or as a salad.
2. Find The Healthy Foods Spots Near You
Find out where the healthy spots are in the areas where you work, live, or travel. Then, plan ahead before you leave the house or hotel. The healthy spot could be a full-service place like the neighborhood Vietnamese or Greek/Mediterranean restaurant. Cafes or to-go spots like Snap Kitchen in Austin, Texas, Sweet Greens in DC/Northern Virginia, and Temple Kitchen, Grown, or Dirt Eat Clean in Miami, FL are good finds. There are many markets and cafes that now prepare and have healthy food available for easy pickup or eating on the go.
No, it’s not quite as cheap as buying and preparing meals yourself, but if you’re a busy person (OR you can’t/don’t cook) and would just spend the money on junky fast food or pizza, then it’s a much better value in the moment and long term.
Another healthy take-out option is the cafe at Whole Foods Market or Central Market. If you haven’t been to one yet and there’s one near you, go ahead and check out the available options in advance. Just don’t pretend that the pizza is healthy because it’s at Whole Foods, okay?
Most of all, remember that it’s all about progress not perfection.
It’s always the small habits that add up. Don’t let yourself fall back into old habits that cause you to not feel so great!
I’d love to hear from you, now: What do you do when cooking is not an option, like when you’re on the road or on-the-go? Do you have healthy take-out spots you can rely on?