Better Dining Experiences for Veterans

By Wounded Warrior Project, Special for  USDR

Veterans know the combination of dining out and reduced physical activity can be bad for the waistline as they transition back to civilian life. But that doesn’t mean eliminating date  night.

Knowledge and willpower are effective tools for enjoying a delightful, yet healthy, meal. Eating out should be special, not an excuse to over-indulge. Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) empowers veterans to use some basic guidelines to turn a night on the town into a healthier fine-dining  experience.

As an added benefit, eating healthy improves mental health. Reduced-calorie diets that include vegetables can help with  depression.

When we are dining out, we are going to have more calories, bigger portion sizes, more sodium, more saturated and trans fats, and a higher sugar content – all bad things. But there are different strategies we can use to cut down on those extra calories, fat, sugar, and  sodium.

We will explore three ways to make healthier choices during a night out on the town: scouting the menu in advance, creating a healthy and comfortable environment, and being  salad-smart.

We started with scouting the menu in advance, so let’s move to creating a healthy and comfortable  environment.

Put cellphones away, and establish a more relaxing mood that reduces impulsive  eating.

Once the food arrives, eat deliberately. Savor the flavor. Slow down by drinking water and setting down your fork between bites. That gives your stomach a chance to tell you when it’s  full.

Starches like pasta, rice, potatoes, and bread should be limited to a small, fist-size amount. Avoid salsa and chips, popcorn, and sugary  drinks.

Restaurants often use grilled vegetables as garnish, so ask for your full portion. Also, have the server put half of your meal in a to-go container before serving the meal so it’s out of sight, out of  mind.

Registering with WWP is a good way for veterans to stay on a healthy path, with access to Physical Health and Wellness events that include adaptive sports, nutrition coaching, and recreational activities. To learn other healthy tips for dining out, visit http://newsroom.woundedwarriorproject.org/Wounded-Warrior-Project-Empowers-Veterans-to-Live-Heathier.

About Wounded Warrior  Project
Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) connects, serves, and empowers wounded warriors. Read more  at  http://newsroom.woundedwarriorproject.org/about-us.

SOURCE Wounded Warrior  Project

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.