Eating Out Survival Guide

Building a healthy meal at a restaurant isn’t that much different than building a healthy meal at home. Here are some strategies to navigate with ease.


Do some research beforehand. Most restaurants post their menus online and some even have nutrition facts. For more popular chains MyFitnessPal has pre-loaded info.

Come up with a plan before you’re at the restaurant with the tips below so you don’t feel rushed when everyone’s ordering and make any rash decisions. This is also a great way to hold yourself accountable: decide what you’re going to eat and honor that instead of making a last minute switch.

Go Time

You’ve arrived at the restaurant. You’ve sat down with your friends. It’s time to start putting the plan into action.


Skip them. Skip the bread. If everyone at your table is on the same page you can even ask the waiter ahead of time to not bother bringing bread.

Build Out Your Plate

Stick with the plate method in a restaurant: quarter plate of protein, quarter plate of starchy carbs, half a plate of veggies.

"Can you GRILL, BAKE, OR STEAM that?

The Magic Phrase

This is how you want to order your proteins and veggies. Also ask for little or no oil.


Salads are an obvious healthy option, but be careful. Many restaurant salads can pack over 1000 calories with added sugars, fried proteins, and caloric dressings.

Salads are great, but make sure you stick with the protein guide above (grilled, baked, steamed) and get an oil based dressing. Better yet, ask for oil and vinegar or oil and a little salt.

Portion Control

Most restaurant portions are way larger than what we’d normally eat at home (or than what our block sizes are). If you’re a few weeks into the Accelerator you should have a good sense of what your normal portion sizes are by eyeballing it. If not, don’t worry. The size of your palm is roughly 4 ounces.

A good strategy is to plan to eat half of your plate and take the other half home (lunch is ready!). If you’re the kind of person that tends to eat everything in front of you, ask the waiter to box up half ahead of time or ask for a second plate, make the division yourself, and then ask the waiter to box that half up.

Get sauces on the side. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or make requests. 

Be Mindful

Slow down and savor each bite. Eat until 80% full (don’t eat until stuffed). Enjoy your time out with friends / family – that’s what the experience is about.

Make sure you drink plenty of water. If people are ordering drinks and you want something a little more exciting get seltzer and lime.