Saturday, September 19, 2009

Eating Out

Tomorrow marks two months since I started Weight Watchers.   Counting back, I realize that since I started, I have eaten out exactly twice.  One night we were in a pinch for time and going to a meeting so we grabbed Little Caesar's pizza.  The other was for the Teenager’s birthday at the Thai restaurant.  But all well within my point limits for the week. 

While I love going out to eat, it wasn’t something we did several times a week anyway…it was  usually a treat, maybe three or four times a month just because of $$.

But while counting points over the last eight weeks, I have noticed several things have happened.

I don’t seem to want to eat anywhere but home anymore!

In thinking about this, I think it comes down to three main reasons with the first one being the biggest reason, but the others playing a role as well.

First reason is the desire for CONTROL over my food intake.  When I eat at home, I am much more in CONTROL of what I am eating.   I can eat well, be very satisfied, and still stay within my point range.

When I eat out or even at someone’s house, I have a lot more temptation dangling in front of me and I usually end up eating  more points than I should be having, and more points than I would be eating at home.  Basically I am losing control.

Second is my desire to eat HEALTHIER.  I have noticed that, while I have always had a bent towards alternative foods and health remedies, more recently, starting with the Amazing Grass shake, I have started to incorporate more and more organic and healthy living changes into my and my family’s diet.   Many healthy organic foods are high in fat so I still need to watch what I am switching to, but I can definitely see an evolution in my way of eating….and this is much harder to incorporate when eating out. 

I can’t say I have no desire for junk at all…I can easily see going out to a breakfast buffet and still getting myself in trouble!!!  But it is easier to lessen this desire when I am in my own environment, buying and cooking my own foods.

Also, I love knowing exactly what is going into what we are eating, as well as the environment in which it is prepared.  I don’t know why…lately I have a growing aversion to restaurant kitchens…their cleanliness, their prep methods. 

Finally, I am enjoying saving $$.  More and more when we were going out I would feel irritated, for example that I would pay $7 for a glass of Merlot when I could buy the same bottle for $11.99.  Or  $40.00 for breakfast at Denny’s for the five of us, that we can prepare at home for around $10.  

Maybe the flip side of the control issue is the fear of not being able to control my intake….is that something I need to address?  I don’t know.  I have never been a binge eater so I am not worried about losing control in that respect, it is more the fact that I usually prefer the unhealthy fatty choices over the leaner healthier choices (give me Alfredo over Marinara any day!)

How does everybody else handle the eating out while trying to lose weight dilemma?


WeightWatcher Mama said...

eating out is sometimes hard, sometimes not. in the last week i've been to the thai restaurant, where i ordered a wonderful dish with rice noodles, chicken, veggies & a sauce. but also at the italian restaurant and local restaurant, i order salads at both, dressing on side. i've also been getting the chicken breast salad at subway instead of a mini ham sub w/o cheese. i ALWAYS get the grilled ceasar salad at mcdonalds because i take the kids there once a week. my biggest problem isn't always eating out, but more so at someone elses house. at a restaurant you atleast have an option of healthy (salads), but not so much @ a birthday party or labor day picnic etc. i'm a sucker for birthday cake!

Vicki said...

We have never been big restaurant goers so I don't have many tips in that area... I did want to comment however that I think it is awesome that you are changing the eating habits of your entire family while you change your own... that is one of the pluses of us eating better... our kids hopefully will pick up the good new habits.

Moi said...

Don't worry, it will get a bit easier as time goes on. I love the food at the local resturants but find myself drawn to the chain ones for the online nutritional analysis. I spend a stupid amount of time figuring what dishes have how many points and what I can have. Its different for everyone but I think everyone does need to find a balance. Good luck to finding yours