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Eating Healthy When Dining Out

It’s possible to eat delicious restaurant meals as part of a cancer-fighting diet.

Just focus on plant foods and use these tips to navigate the menu.

Before you decide where to dine out, look up the restaurant menus online or ask around to find out which places offer healthy fare.  Many diet tracking websites such as have a large selection of restaurant items from national chains in their databases.

If you are already hungry, take the edge off with a light snack or beverage, like a small glass of reduced-sodium tomato juice.

At the restaurant:

  • Drink water or sugar-free beverages and limit alcohol (no more than 1 drink for women and 2 for men) before and during the meal.
  • Tell the server not to bring bread, butter or chips, or limit to one serving of each. You can also begin with a broth-based soup or green salad with dressing on the side.
  • Order sandwiches that include vegetables like greens, tomatoes or peppers, but keep the cheese to a minimum.
  • Ask for side dishes of vegetables, whole grains and beans in light dressing instead of fried or in a buttery or creamy sauce.
  • Trim the size of large entrées by –
  • Sharing one entrée with a friend
  • Requesting a take-out container when you order so you can save half the portion before eating the rest
  • Choosing smaller items, such as an appetizer and soup instead of an entrée
  • Skip or share dessert, or choose fruit or a mini dessert popular in many restaurants

Luckily many restaurant menus now offer healthier items. Here are some smart selections with cancer prevention in mind:

  • Low-fat salad dressings (served on the side)
  • Broth-based soups
  • Whole beans instead of refried beans
  • Grilled, baked or poached fish
  • Veggie burgers
  • Brown rice or other whole grain sides instead of white rice
  • Entrees served without cheese
  • Fresh fruit or low-sugar desserts
  • Unsweetened beverages

Please click here to read this entire article which can be found on page 3 and others provided by The American Institute for Cancer Research.


Anti-Cancer Recipes