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Tips for Dining Out

By Marcus | In Nutrition | on February 19, 2014

Dining out can be tricky, especially when on a Whole30 or trying to keep the food relatively “paleo”. When you choose to dine out, realize there are some trade-offs that you will simply have to accept. For example, you’ll be very hard-pressed to find good quality meat — most restaurants will be offering grain-fed beef, chicken or pork. Also note, while you should avoid vegetable-, nut- or seed-based oils at home, those tend to be par for the course at restaurants. These two points should also help illustrate why you should hopefully be doing more of the cooking for yourself versus eating out every day. Here are some further tips to minimize the damage:

Ask for special menus — with “gluten-free” becoming a new fad diet in and of itself, there is a silver lining in that many restaurants are now more aware of the term. Take advantage of this by asking if the restaurant offers a gluten-free menu. Some will even have a full allergen menu, which will make it easier to avoid dairy and soy as well.

Avoid fried food — since restaurants use those sub-par oils, you definitely don’t want to eat something that was drenched in them. This would include sweet potato fries or tortilla chips.

Be knowledgeable — knowing a little about cooking methods can also help you out. For example, you may think that a plain chicken breast should be fully compliant, until you find out that many restaurants will dredge the chicken in flour to give an even browning to the surface. This will go hand-in-hand with the tip about special menus, but if the restaurant doesn’t offer them, ask your server.

Beware soups, sauces and dressings — most of these will contain some shady ingredients. Soups and sauces commonly have flour used as a thickener along with potentially sugar. This is particularly true if the soup is not transparent. Dressings will use poor quality oils, sugars and other additives. Instead, most places will have plain olive oil and vinegar for the asking.

While it’s fairly easy to do salads or bunless burgers when dining out, hopefully the above tips will help you broaden your choices slightly. When in doubt, ask questions of your server.


WOD 02.19.14

Farmer Handles, 50′

Then, either A or B
A. 3x:
3 Bar Muscle Ups
4 Cleans (225/148)
5 Box Jumps (36/30)

B. 3x:
8 Power Cleans
9 Box Jumps
10 Toes to Bar

(Those choosing A must perform it as Rx)

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