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Healthy Eating Out Ideas
To some people, the thought of eating out and of maintaining a low-GI diet might seem like a contradiction in terms. It's not! Although you might not have as much control over what you eat when you're out of the house, restaurants today offer a growing variety of healthy and delicious low-GI foods. Many menus, for example, feature grilled seafood, fresh vegetables, pastas, and fruits; choices such as these are healthy also, because they're low in fat. And with the growing popularity of ethnic foods, healthy choices are even broader. Here are some tips:

  •  Chinese food. Authentic Chinese food features plenty of vegetables and is low in fat-a good, low-GI option. Limit your intake of starchy, Asian-style sticky white rice, though, which has a high GI. A low-GI alternative would be oriental noodles (egg, rice, or mung bean). Try to stay away from deep-fried foods, also-not so much from a GI standpoint, but because they're very high in fat.
     
  • Healthy Eating Out Ideas Mexican food. Most Mexican restaurants in the United States serve high-starch, high-fat foods (including chips), that are denser in calories than they are in nutrients. If possible, stick with grilled seafood and chicken dishes, black beans, and entrees such as fajitas. Limit the sour cream.
     
  •  Italian food. Pasta dishes, seafood dishes, and meat dishes are nutritionally sound choices, as long as they're not overloaded with cheese. Thin-crust pizza with vegetable toppings is a good choice. And remember, those bread calories eaten while waiting for the meal to arrive still count! Ask for semolina bread if it's available.
     
  •  Japanese food. Practically anything in an authentic Japanese restaurant works into a low GI meal plan, even sushi (it's prepared with vinegar). Canned lychees, however, have a high GI.
     
  •  Thai food. Thai dishes typically include small amounts of meat, seafood, or tofu with vegetables and spicy sauce. All are good choices from a GI standpoint.
     
  •  Indian food. Indian cuisine is generally friendly to a low-GI diet. It features legumes, chicken, fish, vegetables, and yogurt. Just be aware of the high-fat fried foods and heavy, butter-based sauces.
     
  •  Fast food. Fast food restaurants can spell trouble for low-GI diets. Hamburgers and other fast-food sandwiches are served on processed breads and rolls having high GIs. Most fast foods are also very high in fat and sodium. As a general rule, try to avoid fast foods. If you can't avoid fast food restaurants, visit the salad bar.
     
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