How to Choose a Low-Glycemic-Friendly Restaurant
10 of 10 in Series: The Essentials of Choosing Low-Glycemic Foods
Adopting a low-glycemic diet doesn't mean you'll never go to a restaurant again. Eating out when you’re choosing a low-glycemic diet means you need to pay a little more attention to what a low-glycemic-friendly restaurant has on the menu. Such establishments tend to
Offer a wide variety of menu options
Feature multiple choices for breads, rice, and pastas (rye, whole-wheat, brown, and so on)
Have menu items that contain low-glycemic food choices, such as vegetables, beans, and whole-wheat bread
Serve side vegetables or salad entrees
On the flip side, some restaurants may leave you hard-pressed to find much of anything that’s low-glycemic. Restaurants that aren’t so low-glycemic-friendly generally have these characteristics:
A very limited menu
A lack of vegetable choices (think sides, soups, or salads)
Fries, potato salad, or potato chips as the only side options
A lot of pasta, noodle, or rice dishes
When it comes to the glycemic index of foods, you’re really looking at carbohydrates. Think about the different types of restaurants that you can choose from. Do they offer whole-wheat or rye bread rather than white? Do they have entrees that include lots of veggies as opposed to dishes loaded down with starches? Restaurants that don’t offer low-glycemic-friendly foods can make selecting the best food choices much more difficult (not to mention your body’s response to the meal will be tougher to handle). Make a list of restaurants that offer food selections that help maintain your low-glycemic focus. Then try to stick to these options.
If you live in a small town with limited restaurant choices, don’t stress about not immediately being able to find low-glycemic dishes on the menu. Instead, try to make friends with the owner, chef, or wait staff. If you do, the restaurant just may be able to accommodate your needs. For example, maybe it has a soup of the day that changes frequently. You can send in your request for a low-glycemic-friendly soup. Asking never hurts so long as you’re friendly about it.
If you’re going out with friends and family and you aren’t able to select the restaurant of your choice, don’t fret. You can still make the best decisions with the options you’re given. After all, living a low-glycemic lifestyle isn’t an exact science. Just choose foods that have a lower glycemic index and provide a nice nutrient balance; then monitor your portion sizes.