Hello, Darlings! Today I am going to talk about Tips And Tricks To Eating Out On The Keto Diet. With COVID restrictions, we have not been dining out much at all. Most of our meals have been at home which is great for the Keto Diet because I can control what goes in them. When you eat out, you do not know what the chef is putting into your food.
But don’t worry, you can still make really good choices with a couple of tips and trick.
Tips And Tricks To Eating Out On The Keto Diet
Tip #1 For Eating Out On The Keto Diet- Plan Ahead!
Plan ahead of time. Sounds simple enough, but you will want to look up the menu online ahead of time. Most restaurants and fast food places have their menus online. When you walk into the restaurant you will already have your dinner planned out so you will not be tempted seeing or smelling other patrons foods. No, really this important.
When looking at nutritional information online, just concentrate on carbs and serving size. Many times you can half a meal and bring part home to help reduce carb intake.
Tip #2 Choose Your Meal From The Appetizer Menu
Remember, the Keto Diet is about no sugar, low carbs, high fat. Many appetizers will fit that formula. Appetizers such as chicken wings, dips, charcuterie boards all work with the Keto Diet. Ask for substitutes, such as celery for any crackers.
Tip #3 Eating Out On Keto Diet- Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Substitutes
I know you don’t want to be “that” person. Most restaurants do not mind in the least. Just last week I went to a very nice restaurant and the chef substituted out the carb (potatoes) and added wilted greens. I have also asked for carbs to be removed. Chicken dinner with steamed broccoli and rice, I told them to hold the rice.
If no substitutions are allowed, just simply remove the item (usually a carb) as soon as the plate arrives. I dumped a carb (potatoes) into my napkin and went to restroom where I trashed it out.
Tip #4 When In Doubt- Go With Salad And Protein
Most restaurants, unless they are ethnic, will have a grilled chicken salad. Remove any extra carbs such as croutons, enjoy with full-fat dressing. You don’t have control over what is in the dressing, but you can always bring your own.
Tip #5 In Mexican Restaurants Go With A Bowl Or Fajitas
Most every Mexican restaurant has fajitas. Discard the tortilla and enjoy the meat, grilled vegetables with cheese, sour cream, and guacamole. Many of the fast-casual styles of Mexican restaurants such as Chipolte has a build your own bowl options. Again, avoid any carbs such as rice and beans.
Tip #6 Eating Out On Keto Diet- Chinese/Italian Restaurant Look For Steamed
Okay, first off Chinese restaurants are notorious with carbs and sugars. Most of the meat is coated in starch prior to cooking and sauces have sugar in them. Look for options that are steamed with greens on the side, lettuce wraps, clear soups. Avoid rice and noodles. If it is a chain restaurant, you should be able to find nutritional information on their website.
Italian restaurants are notorious for carbs. One word… pasta! Pasta is NOT keto-friendly and will throw you out of ketosis. But, like any restaurant you can find food to eat. Look for antipasto salads, Caprese salads, seafood, and meats. Here is a whole post on keto-friendly options from the Olive Garden
Tip #7 Save Your Carbs For Dining Out By Limiting Earlier In The Day
On days when I know I am going to be dining out, I will not eat any carbs earlier in the day. That way I will have some wiggle room when dining out. Keto is suppose to be a lifestyle so there will be time when you go over on carbs. I try to plan ahead and save up for special occasions.
Tip # 8 Check Out Keto-Friendly Wines, Beers, And Alcohol
Yes, you can have alcohol on the Keto Diet. A couple of disclaimers, everyone’s body and metabolism is different. Your body needs to burn off the alcohol before it gets back to using fat for energy. So make good choices in your alcohol. If you do indulge, you might go out of ketosis, but it will not be as long as a carb binge.
Alcohol is made from either sugar (grapes) or grains. So that means that alcohol has carbs/sugar. Some alcohol has more carbs than others. Watch things such as mixers, they can be loaded with sugars. As always, plan ahead, make good choices, and drink in moderation
Recently I went out to dinner and had Pino Grigio with a keto-friendly dinner. Next morning my ketones were low but still there.
Tip # 9 If You Over Indulge- Have A Fasting Day
Let’s be honest, it is not easy to eat out and stay perfectly faithful to the Keto Diet. We are going to have temptations or be in positions where keto friendly food is just not available. Never fear, you will get out of ketosis, but you can quickly get back on track with fasting
After a binge, try a 24 to 36 hour fast where you eat no food and drink only water with electrolytes and black coffee. The idea is to empty your liver of all glucose and quickly get you back on track. After you fast, go to 16:8 or two meals a day eating schedule for a week. Make sure those meals are full-fat so your body can back to being fat-adapted.
Finally, don’t forget to check your ketones or “pee-tones” using your urine ketone strips. One evening out I did not make the best choices, but found that I was still in ketosis (pink on urine ketone strips).
Tip #10 Ask Yourself- Is It Worth It?
If you do overindulge, you can expect to be out of ketosis from anywhere to 24 hours up to 3 days. In those days you may experience bloating, weight gain, and NO weight loss. So trying hard to make good choices when eating out so you can stay in ketosis, get control of insulin resistance, build a better metabolism, and lose weight.
*Friendly Warning About Overindulging*
Warning, if you do overindulge, especially on sugars, you might get physically ill. I have thrown up after eating too many carbs (Italian). My system is now fat-adapted and my body rejected the carbs. When eating a piece of cake, I was nauseous for hours. Sugar/Carbs are poison now. My body does not want them. That is winning!
Next, How Do I Know If I Am Fat-Adapted
Next post I am going to talk about being fat-adapted and the next steps in the Keto Diet.
Need some keto-friendly meal ideas, check out My Favorite Keto Meals