I think the key to successful eating out is planning and preparation. Weâ€™d hate to miss out on the opportunities to dine out â€“ itâ€™s such a social aspect of life.
Here are a few key tips weâ€™ve personally found helpful in our 5 years following OMS (and still dining out) â€“
1. In our home area we choose higher quality restaurants and become regulars (well, within reason). We donâ€™t eat out as much as we used to but the few restaurants we go to are a little more expensive, but have been brilliant at making food adaptations.
2. Let them know in advance. We always phone up any restaurant beforehand to let them know (or remind them) about dietary restrictions.
3. Research the menu online beforehand if possible â€“ then youâ€™re not caught out having to flounder about deciding what to choose â€“ you at least have a good idea before you go.
4. Weâ€™re always aware that even with the best restaurants, and best choices things might not be 100% OMS BUT we are 100% OMS at home so actually donâ€™t beat ourselves up about it on the odd occasion and accept possible mistakes being made â€“ just enjoy it and make it as stress free and pleasurable as possible. If fact we often give our systems a boost before and after eating out e.g. an extra goodness packed juice or two to help compensate and boost the system a bit / less saturated fat than normal on the day before and after dining out etc.
5. We often treat ourselves to a very nice bottle of wine - often compensates for missing out dessert
The Swank MS Diet and Lifestyle Page gave this list of ideas around eating out a few days ago â€“ some good ideas here too. Iâ€™ve eliminated / altered the ones that donâ€™t apply to OMS -
Eating out can be handled very effectively once you have mastered the basic concepts of the diet. More restaurants are adapting their menus to accommodate people on restrictive diets. We suggest however, that you eat out no more than once a week because of the variable and often high amount of hidden fat in all restaurant food. The following general rules may help you select the more appropriate restaurants and food on their menu.
1. Let your waiter know that you are on a restrictive diet and that you must avoid dairy products and saturated fats.
2. All fast-food restaurants are forbidden eating establishments. The high fat content of their food cannot be tolerated.
3. Moderately expensive restaurants are usually more accommodating and able to make adjustments to your needs. Lower priced restaurants are not able to deviate from the menu and are generally not helpful.
4. Avoid gourmet-type restaurants because of the excessive use of butter, cream and cheese.
5. Avoid Mexican restaurants because of the use of bacon, fat and lard in the preparation of the food.
6. Oriental food can be eaten if you avoid all deep-fried or fried foods. Order only the vegetable and fish dishes.
7. All deep fried foods are forbidden.
8. Request that your fish be broiled, poached, or baked without butter. NEVER FRIED.
9. Request that your vegetables be steamed without butter.
10. Do not order sauteed vegetables or fish. Usually they are sauteed in (animal) hard fat.
11. Do not use salad dressings when the oil cannot be identified. Fresh lemon juice is a good substitute.
12.Order fresh fruit, gelatin or fruit ices, all with no toppings, for dessert.
13. If there are no permissible items on the menu, order a'la carte. A shrimp or crab salad can be complemented by a baked potato and roll to satisfy your hunger.
14. Do not be afraid to make special requests of your waiter.
Hope this helps.