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  • Dining Out the Guilt-free Way

  • Dining out doesn't necessarily mean playing Russian roulette with your diet. As tempting as it may be to order the dish with the highest tally of fat grams, there are numerous guilt-free dishes that are not only good for you, but will also save you the trouble of buying a new wardrobe once the meal is over.

    Avoid foods described as:

    • sauted
    • fried
    • braised
    • crispy
    • creamed
    • buttery
    • cheesy
    • escalloped
    • basted
    • marinated in oil

    Instead, choose those that are:

    • steamed
    • garden fresh
    • roasted
    • broiled
    • baked
    • poached

    When ordering appetizers, consider steamed seafood, raw vegetables, fresh fruits, or a salad with a low fat salad dressing on the side. And before you smother your bread with an entire patty of butter or margarine, think of savoring the richness of the bread without that added fat.

    When looking for a low-fat entrée don't consider a vegetarian meal as your only option. Chicken and seafood dishes make delicious low-fat picks, along with some red meat dishes. Vegetables, starches and baked potatoes are good selections, but skip the sour cream and butter. Yogurt, steak sauces and other low fat condiments will make that potato just as tasty, but with a lot less fat.

    There are many delicious desserts that will tango with your taste buds and not become a permanent resident on your thighs, hips, or buttocks. Try a fresh fruit salad, yogurt, or sorbet instead of pastries, cookies, or ice creams.

    When dining at more ethnic restaurants, choosing healthy foods may seem difficult. However, there are still low-fat choices you can make at almost any type of restaurant.

    Here are some tips: