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March is such a great month... in like a lion, out like a lamb and all that. We mark the first day of spring, Spring Break, and great birthdays like mine and my husband's. Oh, and America celebrates National Nutrition Month!
The American Dietetic Association has published many helpful tips in honor of National Nutrition Month. Since I receive a lot of email asking for tips about eating on the run, I've decided to share some of the ADA's "Eating On the Run" advice.
1. Think ahead and plan where you will eat. Don't wait the last minute and try to pick somewhere when you are absolutely famished! Consider what meal options are available. Look for restaurants or carry-out with a wide range of menu items and healthier choices.
2. Choose items that are baked, braised, broiled, grilled, poached, roasted or steamed.
3. Don't be embarrassed to make special requests! Ask for a baked potato or side salad in place of French fries or no mayonnaise or bacon on your sandwich. Ask for sauces, dressings and toppings to be served "on the side."
4. Hunger can drive you to eat too much! Ask the waiter/waitress to NOT bring bread or chips to your table.
5. Limit the amount of alcohol you drink. No more than two drinks if you are trying to watch your calories. Stick with pure clear spirits like vodka or 100% blue agave tequila.
6. Split your order. Share an extra large portion with a friend or take half home for another meal.
7. Replace fries or chips with a side salad, fruit or baked potato.
8. Enjoy ethnic foods such as Chinese stir-fry, vegetable-stuffed pita or Mexican fajitas. Go easy on the sour cream, cheese and guacamole.
9. At the salad bar, pile on the dark leafy greens, carrots, peppers and other fresh vegetables. Lighten up on mayonnaise-based salads and high-fat toppings. Enjoy fresh fruit as your dessert.
10. Eat your lower-calorie food first. Soup or salad is a good choice. Follow up with a light main course.
11. If you do choose the buffet, fill up on salads and vegetables first. Take no more than two trips and use the small plate that holds less food.
Diet.com expert blogger Donna M. DeCunzo-Taddeo is the registered and licensed dietitian who developed the 12-week weight management program that became the foundation of the eDiets.com weight loss program. Together with her husband, writer/director John Taddeo, Donna has since launched Voodoo Tiki Tequila Corp. Donna has been featured by CNN, NBC, NY Times, Cosmopolitan, Women's World and Women's Day.