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Old 04-06-2013, 09:27 PM   #1
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Eating out: It's a jungle out there!

I went to a chain restaurant tonight, and thought I had PLENTY of calories with 1200 left to go. I looked up the menu online, and annoyingly I couldn't plan ahead because the website says they provide calorie counts "in Oregon and California" . . . but not on their website. Even with 1200 calories, it wasn't so easy to find something that could both fit in my calorie count and satisfy my picky up day queen self.

I am guessing the reason they only list calories where required by law because of the shockingly high calorie counts of most of the meals. They had a light menu, but nothing sounded good on it. Before I started looking at calorie counts, I would have easily had 2000 or 3000 cals in one meal. Easily.

I am going out again tomorrow night for book club on down day to a local place that has no calorie counts. I was planning on it being my one meal of the day, but now I'm scared! Hoping I'll be OK with a small salad with the dressing on the side?
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Old 04-07-2013, 03:04 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by calichris View Post
I went to a chain restaurant tonight, and thought I had PLENTY of calories with 1200 left to go. I looked up the menu online, and annoyingly I couldn't plan ahead because the website says they provide calorie counts "in Oregon and California" . . . but not on their website.

I am guessing the reason they only list calories where required by law because of the shockingly high calorie counts of most of the meals.
That is horribly irritating. I didn't realise that companies could adopt such different policies throughout the US. And yes - it would make you regard all of the menu items with a high degree of suspicion.
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Old 04-07-2013, 05:40 AM   #3
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Christina, I'm the queen of eating out in California. If you ever have a question before you go to a place, I've probably been there and found something UD worthy. I'm always willing to lend my assistance.

That being said, I totally understand where you're coming from. It's quite annoying. If they have that information readily available for a couple of states, it translates to the other states as well. No reason NOT to have it posted on-line. So frustrating.

I'm sure you'll do great with your salad with dressing on the side tonight. I always also ask for no cheese or croutons. Depending on the restaurant, they can add tons of higher calorie options, even to a small side salad. Most places have oil and vinegar as well, so I order that and then just put vinegar on my salad. If that's an option for you, it can work without making it seem like you're putting up much of a fuss.
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Old 04-07-2013, 05:46 AM   #4
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That is one of the best things about JUDDD - think in terms of a week and the very occasional not-sure-what-happened DD fades into the overall picture. Two or three not-sure DDs can make a difference, of course.
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Old 04-07-2013, 07:18 AM   #5
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I hear you. The calorie counts at most of the chain restaraunts are most of the meals are more than my entire UD!!!!! I try to eat only a part of the meal and rarely eat out on DD, but if I do, I get a side house salad with vinegar and salt. It's no wonder America has an obesity issue!
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Old 04-07-2013, 07:43 AM   #6
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Yup. My Friday DD was a pity party early in the day that had me at 400 cals by lunch already. While DH enjoyed a decadent dinner out I had a side salad with vinegar to try and salvage the day. Sometimes there is no better option but at least it was a DD so I didn't feel cheated!
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Old 04-07-2013, 07:59 AM   #7
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I have a friend who is a lifelong WW member. She told me once that no matter where they went for dinner, when the server came, she wouldn't even look at the menu. She always ordered a grilled chicken breast and a salad, no dressing (she always brought little packets of her own). She says not once was she told we can't do that. I'm thinking because they always have chicken breasts and doing it on a grill wasn't such a big special request. She didn't ask for a special marinade or sauce, just grilled.

You could always do that or a variation on that, I'd think.
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Old 04-07-2013, 08:17 AM   #8
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Understand completely Christina! I went to Shoney's and had half a turkey club with soup thinking, "Oh this should be low cal". Later found out that the sandwich I had was over 600 and the soup was around 200. Whoa I learned my lesson there. I hardly Ever go to Shoney's anymore unless I go for the strawberry pie which I know is 332. Whew! eating out is tricky.
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Old 04-07-2013, 08:36 AM   #9
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On days where an accurate count is important, I've decided not to go to restaurants without calorie counts. We're going out tonight and I really want a burger & fries. It's an independent establishment so no calorie counts, I'll have to estimate. Gonna fast until dinner so I can have lots of room and I'm hoping that combined with estimates wi serve me well. I've had luck with that approach in the past.
One thing I've learned is that you can't assume that something is healthy cuz it seems like it should be. Restaurants load so much garbage onto otherwise ok things...all bets are off!!
Annoying, isn't it?
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Old 04-07-2013, 08:49 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yennie View Post
On days where an accurate count is important, I've decided not to go to restaurants without calorie counts. We're going out tonight and I really want a burger & fries. It's an independent establishment so no calorie counts, I'll have to estimate. Gonna fast until dinner so I can have lots of room and I'm hoping that combined with estimates wi serve me well. I've had luck with that approach in the past.
One thing I've learned is that you can't assume that something is healthy cuz it seems like it should be. Restaurants load so much garbage onto otherwise ok things...all bets are off!!
Annoying, isn't it?
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Old 04-07-2013, 09:36 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KeirasMom View Post
If they have that information readily available for a couple of states, it translates to the other states as well. No reason NOT to have it posted on-line. So frustrating.

I'm sure you'll do great with your salad with dressing on the side tonight. I always also ask for no cheese or croutons. Depending on the restaurant, they can add tons of higher calorie options, even to a small side salad. Most places have oil and vinegar as well, so I order that and then just put vinegar on my salad. If that's an option for you, it can work without making it seem like you're putting up much of a fuss.
Dawn ... I'll ask you next time! Most places do put the calorie count on the website if they provide it at all. I would be really mad if I didn't live in California and couldn't get the calories at all, but I really like to plan ahead so I'm not taking 15 minutes at the table scouring the menu and doing calculations. And I like the oil and vinegar tip ... I'm OK with asking for what I want, but on the other hand, I don't want to be like Sally in "When Harry Met Sally." The salad I had in mind for tonight does have bacon, eggs, almonds, and cheese. At home, I could totally do that for 500 calories, especially without dressing. In a restaurant I'm not so sure! Maybe I should go for the plain side salad.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gotsomeold View Post
That is one of the best things about JUDDD - think in terms of a week and the very occasional not-sure-what-happened DD fades into the overall picture. Two or three not-sure DDs can make a difference, of course.
That is true! That is a great thing about JUDDD. Normally I wouldn't worry about it, but I've really been hoping to get the scale moving a little faster and I'm still waiting for a new low in April, so I'd love to stay low if I can.

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Originally Posted by Carly View Post
I try to eat only a part of the meal and rarely eat out on DD, but if I do, I get a side house salad with vinegar and salt.
Eating part of the meal is such a great idea, because then you can really get something fabulous ... just not in the gigantic portion. And you have something leftover! Great for up days. I try to avoid going out on down days too, but I can't always choose the day.

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Originally Posted by Zib View Post
She always ordered a grilled chicken breast and a salad, no dressing (she always brought little packets of her own). She says not once was she told we can't do that.
Great idea! That sounds more satisfying than just a plain salad with vinegar. I might try this tonight.

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Originally Posted by JMBM View Post
Later found out that the sandwich I had was over 600 and the soup was around 200.
That has happened to me before more than once! I would think I had a ballpark figure for the calories in a sandwich, but they pile on the hidden calories somehow.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yennie View Post
On days where an accurate count is important, I've decided not to go to restaurants without calorie counts.
I really think this is best, and I try for that too. On the other hand, this is the restaurant where we always meet; it's centrally located, nice atmosphere, and we all love it, so I think I need to adapt in this case instead. Normally I try to get a book club date that's on my up day, but it didn't happen this time.
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