Eating out turns out to be a huge motivator when undertaking a nutrition programme. It often allows you to eat restricted foods that have the potential to restart your motivation, or cause you to succumb to temptation. Some of the more popular diets recently have revolved around the targeted use or lack of carbohydrates, in the form of carb cycling and the ketogenic diet.
The ketogenic diets looks to limit carb intake dramatically in order to force the body to run off of fat burning chemicals called ketones. This diets requires you to be incredibly strict, however with the correct planning, eating out in a variety of restaurants can be both a pleasure and a help for your nutritional efforts.
Chinese restaurants are hugely popular places to eat, often because of the variety of different dishes and in some cases the adding of MSG. If eating out at a chinese restaurant whilst on a keto diet you'll need to be careful of your sugar and flour intake. This means staying away from battered dishes and those in thick, sweet sauces like sweet chilli. Fortunately you can get your protein to fat ratio on target by eating fattier meats such as duck and port belly. Just be sure to add a side of stir fried vegetables such as bok choi and broccoli. These will add an abundance of vitamins such as vitamin C, whilst giving you much needed fibre which often lacks when on a keto diet.
Stay away from large portions of carrots and onions too, whilst these are still healthy they contain larger numbers of natural vegetable sugars which can push you over your limit and out of ketosis, the state when the body lacks carbs as a fuel source and runs off of ketones.
Indian is also another great treat but the rice accompaniment can be a problem. Try to overcome this by choosing creamier dishes cooked in butter and ghee, and stay away from rice. If you're having a takeaway you can make your own cauliflower rice dish and coconut flour chapatis, otherwise ask for the dish on it's own or with a side salad. The cream and butter may sound counter intuitive when it comes to fat loss, however when in ketosis fat forms the primary fuel source, and both of these products offer calories for energy as well as limited carbs.
Paneer cheese is also another safe option as its loaded with fat and protein, as are saag dishes which provide plenty of spinach and a variety of minerals. Tomato sauce based curries are okay, but must be consumed in moderation because of the amount of carbs from the sugars.