All over the world, people are eating more and more of their meals in restaurants. Enjoying food and keeping control over diet goals, however, can be wrecked by 10 social and nutritional no-no's that ruin your meal and play havoc with your diet:
1. Sitting anywhere you feel uncomfortableTrendy, popular restaurants sometimes only offer small tables in cramped locations. Don't take a table you don't like, even if means you have to eat your meal elsewhere. If you are dissatisfied with your table, you will tend to look for satisfaction in the bread basket, the fried tortilla chips, and extra dessert.
2. Not thinking your meal through before you orderIf the passing dessert cart carries a treat you know you won't be able to resist, don't fill up with freebies before you start your main course. If you are at an ethnic restaurant that does not serve anything "small," don't have a big bowl of soup or a large salad and a full entree. Think your whole meal through before you order. Balance heavy dishes with light dishes, and carbs with protein.
Waiters and waitresses are often told to "push" an entree on which the restaurant makes a high profit. Politely listen to your server as the special is described, but order what you want. If it's a good restaurant, every dish on the menu will be well prepared.
3. Listening to your server instead of your appetite
4. Not asking questionsIf you can't read the menu, or if you aren't familiar with an ingredient, be sure to ask your server before you order. I was once served a barbecued cat in an authentic Asian restaurant, in Asia. Although I paid for my meal, I didn't eat it. In fact, I didn't eat anything else for about a week. When I complained to a native friend later, he told me, "Oh, ding qa qa translates into English as ding meow meow."
People who have food allergies often need to ask about the ingredients in their dishes and to ask if the chef is sure their food will not contain the potential allergen.