Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Food wrench...party of 2

The Mr and I have a birthday dinner for a family member tonight.  It's at a seafood place that has very little that isn't a salt lick sodium wise.  I've got my dinner all planned out and such and it fits perfectly into my calories.  But I hate eating out at places on non-high cal days (especially places I'm not jazzed about the limited choices) because even with my best effort the sodium will be 1100mg for one meal.  I've planned the rest of my meals to accommodate it.  But you know, you go where the birthday person wants to go and grin and bear it.  (I cringe knowing the entree they order along with the app they usually get will end up being close to 5000mg of sodium by the time it's all done.  I'm not judging or anything but they have high blood pressure so I just know how bad that is for them.)  Oddly, I find myself getting slightly obsessive and weirded out about it.  It's not that I can't handle a small wrench in my plan and I'm obviously handling it intake wise just fine but I guess I feel like I need complete control over my plan and when I don't have it, I get...antsy.

I know, I'm a weirdo.

How do you handle when you have a meal out pop up when you know your choices are going to be limited?

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30 comments:

  1. If the "eat-out" is for a special occasion (like when my Dad is visiting, who I only see once a year) I will go but I sure do hate going out to eat! Seldom is there anything healthy on the menu and oh, the cost!

    My coworkers like to go out to eat simply to go out to eat and I decline those invitations. Hence, I seldom go out to eat and that's OK by me!!

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    1. Exactly! I guess what I can't stand is that my family is WAY predictable in where they go. It's either this seafood place or an "Australian" steakhouse...another salt lick. So the Mr and I purposely seek out new restaurants every year and drag them there for our birthdays because if it weren't for us they'd never try anything new!

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    2. I don't much care for that Aussie steakhouse either. Their low-fat options are not very tasty, and like you say, loaded with salt.

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  2. I'll swap my days and make my out to eat day my high cal day. Or if that doesn't work, I'll borrow a few calories from "high day" to cover my costs if I go over due to an eating out experience.

    The only time I'm REALLY annoyed by changes in my plans is when something like eating out falls on my LOW calorie day. That day is challenging enough and there just is not wiggle room there.

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    1. I hear ya. I resent having to plan out stuff for food I don't even like so I try to stick to having it not throw my day off completely so I don't have to sacrifice my high cal day. I'm actually going to be low today when I'm supposed to cycle high.

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  3. Ewwww. I hate Red Lobster too! Why do people like that place? Anyway, hope you stick/stuck to your plan!

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    1. I have no clue. I liked it when I was a kid and it was the equivalent of a "fancy" seafood restaurant. Now, I feel like I should pack heat before going into any of the ones in our area.

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  4. Oh no I TOTALLY know where you are coming from! I have absolutely no idea what all this sodium business is about BUT I can TOTALLY understand not having control just when you really feel you need it especially in such a wonderful and noble quest of losing weight, good luck!

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    1. I am always amazed at how much restaurants depend on sodium to make things taste good. I think I've proven that 95% of the food I make tastes good without it so I cut back wherever I can.

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  5. I remember when I first started on spark. I blogged because I had eaten at chili's and was in shock about the sodium..I ate a grilled chicken sand which! Everyone pretty Mich told me to get used to it. I thought my restaurant life was over...lol silly me. As you did,I learned to adjust... but yea, I hate it! I try not to let it get to me. And omg, I love those damn biscuits!!!!!

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    1. I know, I can't believe something you think is safe like grilled chicken is so bathed in salt! When you've got stuff like Mrs Dash with no salt, you should offer up those options to customers who don't want the traditional seasonings!

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  6. I don't like seafood anyway, so for me it's a double ewwwww. When something throws my plans off, I usually just try to do the best I can with what I've got. For me it's not usually restaurants so much because I usually have at least some control over when/where we eat and most of the places I go have a healthier (not necessarily healthy, but healthier) option.

    The thing I struggle with is when I go to trainings and I see the words "lunch provided". It could be anything. I've had everything from a full menu of options to warm cold cut sandwiches. It's usually a working lunch so I can't go out and get something, and I can't bring my own without drawing unwanted attention to myself.

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    1. We love seafood I just don't understand why something like "coconut and pineapple grilled shrimp" needs to have 2210mg of sodium. That is insane! The Mr has trouble with the lunch provided training classes he occasionally attends. They always have pure crap there including fresh baked in the room Otis Spunkmeyer cookies! WTH!?

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  7. I think the key is knowing that one questionable meal isn't going to derail me. It's several questionable meals along with other bad choices.

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  8. I still get stressed about those type of situations. I know one meal won't kill me, but it doesn't make me happy. I just do the best I can and as you said "grin and bear it!"

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    1. I know and it's like I know I'm able to fit that into my calories with absolutely no problem but I also know that those nutritional info menus can be up to 25% off. I'm going to ask that they don't cook it in butter and hope they listen.

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  9. I hate not having control over where I eat out. I want to plan ahead and have an idea of what I'm going to have when I go out; that's probably why we have only a few places that we go to regularly, because we know what we can have (and how to accommodate the inevitable high sodium all restaurants seem to have). We do try new places periodically, but very carefully.

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    1. I hear ya. I will rearrange my high cal day for the Mr and I's b-day but I don't like to do it for anyone else. LOL I also don't like the do it the week after I had a good weight in (so rare these days) because then I wonder if that was the reason why (even though I know it probably wasn't).

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  10. I hate going out to eat at places where the LITE options suck. I do however like Red Lobster. I don't eat the biscuits, but I do have a salad with the lower fat vinaigrette dressing and usually have the fire-grilled tilapia with broccoli. I'm sure it's all loaded with salt, but it is tasty. Applebee's used to be one of my favorite places, although some of their 550-and under calorie options are NOT very good, some are great. However, the meals I especially liked have recently been taken off the menu, so it's no longer one of my favorite places to go. Our favorite local Mexican place has chile rellenos to die for, but I almost always get their grilled chicken salad instead now. It's really prepared well (no cheese which is good), and I always enjoy it. Can you tell I LOVE to go out to eat? But I must be doing something right, cause I got to my goal weight and have been UNDER that goal weight for almost 14 months!

    We go out to eat every Thursday during the bowling season (Aug-April), with a group of about 8 friends and family. We take turns picking the restaurant, so like you, I am sometimes forced to go somewhere that does not have good low-fat, low-cal, low-sodium choices. I always try to do the best I can, usually I can find a grilled chicken breast. They're not always good (Cheddar's sucked!), but it's about the healthiest thing I can find on the menu.

    Try to enjoy your meal tonight. I know with your work-out ethic, that water weight gain from all the sodium will be gone QUICKLY!

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    1. You would think more restaurants would have more light options or show calories on how you can modify existing menu items. I hate it when people get lulled into a sense of security when they see "organic" or "grass fed beef" or even vegan thinking it's better. I love a vegan bakery we have here in town but I'm not naive enough to think the sticky bun or whoopie pie I get is low cal just because it's vegan. I'm drowning myself in water today to hopefully counteract anything that may come in to play tonight. I may not even have one of those stupid biscuits because the past 2x we've gone, they haven't been worth the sodium.

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  11. It depends... if the going out to eat is my decision and on my terms (aka - usually on a weekend) I'm fine. But I'll be honest, if something pops up and we have to go out during the week I usually freak out. For example a few weeks ago hubby called in the afternoon and said we had to go out to eat that night for his dad's birthday. I had everything all planned out for the day and it did not accomodate a restaurant dinner. I know it's silly but mentally I was in a tizzy. I need to work on that... :-/

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    1. I totally agree. If it's someplace I picked and I love, I'm good with it but if it's anyplace else then I don't like it. I'm not neurotic about it or anything but I just would prefer to stay on plan especially when I am trying to be strict with a new strategy. Sigh.

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  12. I really hate eating out unless it's something I have planned. My husband's family eats out ALL the time, so whenever we see them we're eating some place that has almost nothing healthy to eat, such as Texas Roadhouse, Qs BBQ, Cracker Barrell...etc I always gain weight, even when I get something grilled or a salad. They are eating meals of 1,000+ calories, and they have blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes. It's very hard not to judge that. They get fried onions, rolls with tons of butter...and they eat most days a week. I hardly ever do, and if we're out and just need something quick, I usually get subway or a salad (the mcds near us actually has decent salads).

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  13. Oh, I'm the same way. We pretty much only eat at restaurants on Saturdays. Maybe 3-4 times a year we'll get takeout during the week. Seriously. My husband's family is visiting this week and we're going to be eating out at least 4 times and it's definitely making me anxious...

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  14. Not going out to eat is not an option for me, I just love doing it oh so much! We have so many amazing restaurants around here that it's hard not to go out all the time...which we end up doing anyway! If always try to choose the healthiest options available and get ALL sauces/dressings on the side which no one has ever had a problem accommodating for me. As for the seafood place *ick* I LOATHE going there! For one, I live by the ocean so I cringe if I know seafood has been flown in/frozen from somewhere else, and their food just isn't up to par with the things that I usually like to eat. Now, the Australian restaurant you mention, I love to go to! Not only b/c they have my favorite wine, but they have one of the most delicious tuna appetizers on the planet. Have you ever gotten it before? I don't know how they pull it off b/c I'm sure it's frozen too, but their tuna is ALWAYS a gorgeous ruby red and it melts in your mouth. The sauces on the side are also awesome. I also always order a steak with a naked sweet potato (butter & sugar on the side) and a side of steamed veggies. YUMMO!

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  15. We don't have Red Lobster here in MA but my MIL is insane for the place. They are from here but are down in FL now. I love seafood broiled or grilled, no sauces needed, and we can get it good and fresh at pretty decent restaurants.
    What gets me stressed is when, like you, we have to go somewhere that doesn't have simple dishes sans butter and sodium galore. Why? I am so paranoid that if I ask for no butter or other 'special requests' that the cook will get all bent and "do something" to my food. I waitressed way back in my salad days - HA! old expression - and I know cooks. They hate special requests! Sort of like, "What? You're too good to eat it the way I make it?" Now, admittedly this was HoJo's but I wonder if the bigger the chef's hat, the bigger the ego, you know?
    I also totally get you when you mention what the person requesting Red Lobster is going to order! We worry! There's good reason to worry when someone with HTN is ordering high-sodium foods like that (thinking of my dad).

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  16. I try to plan what I'm going to eat, and then either eat very light for the whole day leading up to it in the knowledge that I will probably have under-estimated the damage and not considered that piece of bread or those onion rings; or plan a huge exercise session for the following day. I'm in a place right now where I feel like socialising is sabotaging my efforts, so I kind of want to be a hermit for a few weeks and not go out for dinner, just to see what impact that has on me.

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  17. I just switch out the days. It all evens out in the end.

    I've never been a RL fan, but they do have delicious biscuits. :)

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  18. i am pretty bad about eating out. i am a picky eater anyway, so most likely, i would find a decent salad or a GREAT dessert! why waste calories on foods i can get at home, or foods that i just plain old dont like. i go for the things i cant get at home.

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