If you do any traveling for work than you know when you’re home, it’s easier to maintain a moderately healthy regimen of diet and exercise. However, when your on the road, eating healthy becomes more difficult. When your out with clients you don’t necessarily get to choose when and where you it. Depending on the venue menu items like chicken wings, fried shrimp, burgers, fries & jalapeno poppers are what your options are. Even salad options might not any better, the creamy Caesar salads and Cobb salads could potentially pack as much fat and calories as the burgers and fries!
Unfortunately, most restaurants (especially the convenient chain ones like Chili’s and Cheesecake Factory) do not make their food with our health in mind. Even things that seem healthy and low calorie like grilled chicken with veggies are often processed and loaded with fat, sugar & salt before they even get to the restaurant, where they are then covered with more fat (butter or oil) and served with salty, buttery or creamy sides. Restaurants do this because they want us, the consumer, to eat as much as possible in a short period of time. Adding fat to food makes it easier for us to chew and swallow, thus making it easier for us to eat at warp speed without realizing it. Most of us are unknowingly addicted to salt and sugar, and restaurants know that adding these elements make us crave it, even if we aren’t hungry! For many of you guys, traveling for work (and hopefully for pleasure every now and then) is an unavoidable part of life, and sometimes, these fatty, salty, sugary unhealthy food options are the only thing you will have to chose from. So what can you do?
Eat less! Eating half of the portion served to you will save you half the calories. Chain restaurants are notorious for serving gigantic portions. Don’t be embarrassed to leave half on your plate, or even ask your server for a container to go and put half your meal in there before you even start eating. Another way to cut back on high calories and fat is to eat all your veggies and leave most of your meat. Most chicken, fish & steaks that are served in chain restaurants are so overly refined and processed that they contain more calories and fat than they originally did. Veggies, by nature, are low calorie, so even if they are drenched in cheese sauce, you’re still better off eating the veggies. Try to avoid items that say things like: fried, sautéed, simmered, sizzling, crispy, creamy, etc. Stick to grilled or steamed. Often times, you can even request for veggies and chicken to be steamed instead of sautéed. If you are real serious about your health, try to find a local market where you can buy fresher, less processed food items. Pack healthy snacks like raw almonds and dried fruit. Worst-case scenario, you don’t have the energy or desire to worry about your diet on the road, so be it. Just enjoy your meal, slow down a little, chew your food thoroughly, take breaks while eating and drink lots of water. When you get back home, just get back on the wagon. Maybe do a mini cleanse when you get back (ie: avoid meat, dairy, processed foods and alcohol for a few days) and get plenty of exercise.