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How to avoid overeating at restaurants

Posted on December 15 2015

Women eating at a restaurant

Restaurants are notorious for serving oversized portions, so it can be difficult to stay on your diet while eating out. But that doesn't mean you have to give up dining out completely. Eating at home every night can get monotonous. Here is some useful advice on how to avoid overeating at restaurants:

Drink water beforehand

Kari Hartel, a licensed dietician, says in FitDay that it's a good idea to drink a glass of water before you go to a restaurant or as soon as you sit down at the table.

"This will help fill your stomach, leaving less room for food," Hartel explained. "Additionally, we often mistake thirst for hunger, making us think we're hungrier than we truly are."

Eat on the patio

If the temperature is warm outside, ask for a table on the patio. According to, heat slows down your metabolism, so you won't be as hungry. This means you will be more likely to order a salad or another light option instead of something heavier.

Order first

According to, if your friend orders a meal that sounds better than what you originally had in mind, you might be tempted to ask for the same thing. That why it's wise to be the first one to order. If that's not possible, choose what you want and repeat it to yourself until the server asks you what you want.

Box up half your meal

When the server brings you a scrumptious pasta dish or savory steak, it's easy to go overboard and eat the entire plate. A simple way to avoid gorging yourself is to ask for a doggy bag as soon as your meal comes out. Put half of the food away and save it for another day. Consider putting the leftovers in a vacuum sealer bag once you get home to keep them fresh for a longer period than traditional food storage.

Have some soup

Order a cup of soup- you will be less hungry by the time your meal comes out. Eating some minestrone or chicken noodle soup will provide you with nutrients and fill up your belly nicely, so you will eat less of your main course.

Remember to eat your food slowly to give your brain enough time to realize your body is full.


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