Eating out is a pastime that many of us enjoy; It can be a great way to get out of the house, try some new foods, and spend quality time with friends and family. While eating out is quite enjoyable, it’s important to note that it can have some negative effects. At the Mindful Living Institute, we have strictly prohibited eating out when in phase one of our protocol. Here are some of the pros and cons that you should consider before choosing to eat out
1. You can try new foods
Cooking something new can be quite intimidating, especially if you’re unsure about whether you’d like it or not. Eating out allows you the freedom to try something new without the investment of your time and effort.
2. You do not have to cook
Like mentioned earlier, cooking takes a lot of time and commitment. Sometimes you may just not have the time or energy to prepare a meal, and eating out would be an easier option.
3. You get to spend time with family and friends
Food has been a way of bringing people together for a long time, so naturally eating out with family and friends is enjoyable. Going to a favorite restaurant with a group of people you value can be a great way to bond with one another.
4. It's easier to feed large parties
Whether you're throwing a party or just planning on meeting with a large group of people, planning food for a lot of people can get quite difficult and costly. Eating out or catering can make this issue a lot easier, as it allows you to relax when it comes to preparing food for everyone. In some cases, catering from restaurants can also be cheaper than preparing food yourself for large groups.
1. It’s Expensive
Restaurant food tends to almost always be overpriced. Frankly, most times you can make the same if not similar dishes from a restaurant menu at home for much cheaper. It may be a better option for you to stay in and make your meal at home rather than spending money outside. You can also make a meal with items you already have in your fridge at home rather than spending more money on groceries. Check out this cool website that lets you enter the ingredients you have and find a recipe that matches .
2. You can’t tell what nutrients are in your dish
More often than not, restaurant menus don't come with nutrition labels next to their dishes. Even if they do, most of us wouldn't look them over before ordering. Often restaurant dishes contain a lot more calories, carbs, and sugar, than you may think. This can easily lead to you eating unhealthy and straying from your protocol/diet. This also can make it quite difficult to journal your food (it’s really important to keep track of your food!). Cooking at home allows for you to know every item that goes into your meal and makes it easier for you to gauge if you're truly eating something healthy or not. For better control over what goes into your body, chose to eat at home
3. You can’t control the way the dish is prepared
A lot of us tend to have preferences when it comes to the way that our food is prepared, whether it be how well cooked we want our food done or what ingredients we want in our dish. Eating out limits the adjustments we can make to our food. This can especially be a problem for people who have dietary restrictions. Such as those with gluten allergies or who are vegetarian. Preparing dishes at home lets you adjust the ingredients in your meal as you please.
There's a lot to consider when eating out and trying to stay healthy. While we generally recommend eating at home rather than out, here are some tips on how to stay mindful when eating out if you chose to do so:
Search up and read over the menu before getting there
Avoid going to all you can eat buffets
Eat a small healthy snack before leaving the house
Skip pre-dinner bread or high calorie appetizers
Save money and order water
Ask for healthy alternatives
Instead of having dessert, try having a cup of coffee
Share your order