Tips for dining out after weight loss surgery

  1. First and foremost, don’t feel pressured to eat like everyone else. Other diners may order larger portions or unhealthy meals—don’t let that deter you or make you feel bad for choosing to eat healthy.
  2. Plan ahead. It’s always a good idea to look up the menu and nutrition facts on-line.
  3. Ask that bread and butter not be served at your table.
  4. Avoid foods that may be difficult to chew and/or swallow, such as steak, bread and fibrous vegetables like asparagus. If you haven’t had a successful experience with a certain food at home, it might be best to avoid trying it for the first time at a restaurant.
  5. Substitute side dishes. Instead of ordering fries or mashed potatoes with your meal, ask for a salad or steamed vegetables. Most restaurants offer these substitutions at no (or very little) additional cost.
  6. Ask for all dressings or sauces to be served on the side.
  7. Know how your food is prepared, and avoid foods that are fried. Instead, choose meals that are grilled, baked, broiled, roasted, steamed, stir-fried or poached. If the menu isn’t clear, ask your server how the dish is prepared before you order.
  8. Order smaller portions. Because you can eat less and feel satisfied, you may find that an appetizer or a meal from the children’s menu is sufficient.
  9. Look for “light” menu items that are prepared without extra butter or oil.
  10. Share your main course or request a to-go container with your food and, before you begin eating, portion out your food to approximately: 3 oz protein, ¼ cup complex carbohydrate and ½ cup vegetables. If this portion is too much, eat until you feel satisfied and add the leftovers to your to-go container.
  11. Eat slowly and chew your food to a liquid consistency. To help you accomplish this, it is best to set your utensils down between bites.
  12. Don’t drink with your meals since liquids may push food down and allow you to fit more food in your pouch. Remember, it’s best to avoid liquids 30 minutes before/after a meal.
  13. Avoid soft desserts like pudding or ice cream. Remember that your pouch is not designed to restrict these types of foods.

 

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