Sunday, July 15, 2007

Eating out on Weight Watchers

One of the best things about being on the Weight Watchers plan is that I can still eat out. No, I can't go out for a Chicago style stuffed pizza as much as I'd like to, but I can eat whatever I want within reason as long as I control the portions and don't exceed my points. I try to stay within my 20 point allotment on most days and use my 35 weekly flex points for eating out or having a day free from feeling like I am dieting. To be perfectly honest, I really am not crazy about tracking and on most days I usually go over a couple points.

My goal is to one day go over to the core plan, which really is a much healthier way to eat, but I need to learn more and acquire a taste for whole foods and what is on the core foods list, be able stop eating when I have truly had enough food, and learn more about energy density of foods. Right now that just seems to complicated. I should probably read a book on Volumetrics, which is based on the same basic principles as Weight Watchers core plan.

Anyhoo, getting back to dining out, what you will be served when you eat out will use up more points that what you would have been eating at home. Even ordering a salad out will cost over 10 points in many places. Check WW Dining out companion or Girl's Bite Out or any number of websites to find out the point values of many popular dining out options. Also check out the lists at Health Discovery or Retaurant Points.

Good planning is essential when eating out while you are on a diet. Last night I went to Chili's after going to see Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (good movie BTW) and I had a side salad, margarita chicken and an iced tea with lime. I had fat free dressing on the side and substituted veggies for rice with the entree. I know I probably should have ordered from the guilt-free grill options, but margarita chicken is also grilled chicken and is very tasty. I had to work around the croutons and cheese in the side salad (now I know to order salad w/o them). Garlicly croutons are very tempting to me and why people put cheese on salad I will never understand. Overall it was very yummy, but when I got home and looked up the points for my margarita chicken it was 14! That is a lot, especially considering that I ate some popcorn during the movie. Oh well, tomorrow is weigh in and since I was pretty good and actually tracking well during the week, I think I my weight will be down this week.