One of my favorite challenges is the “going out to eat” challenge. We get to learn about the best places to find paleo food around town! This can also improve your social experiences with others when going out to eat.
Below are a few tips I had from a previous post. Shaun and I had a Paleo breakfast at Scholars Inn Restaurant.
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions. This is a phobia many people have; stop fearing that you’ll be judged or considered nuisance if you ask questions. Questions help you become more educated and we can all use a little bit of that. If you’re a shy person, then overcome this challenge.
- You HAVE to ask questions. You don’t know if dairy, legumes, corn syrup, etc. are hidden in the soups and sauces, if grain based thickeners are in the gravy, if beans, corn or rice are part of a mixed vegetable option (even though they aren’t vegetable), or if they add butter to the vegetables. Most salad dressings are a NO GO. Whether you are afraid or not, you have to ask questions
- Ask for additions or substitutes and just pay it. It seems that Restaurants welcome large portions of deep fried foods, but small portions of vegetables and meat. Regardless of why this is, Shaun ALWAYS has to order a larger meat and extra vegetables. Chances are your $3.50 cup of broccoli will barely fill the palm of your hand, but you’ll feel a little more satisfied if you include it.
- Seek out a restaurant that isn’t a chain. Usually their food will be fresh, sometimes local ingredients. It’s my opinion they will most likely be more understanding of your needs.
- It’s ok to talk about your challenge. At the table discussed our needs with the server, but didn’t go into detail about our challenge. But, on our way out of the Scholar’s Inn, I took a picture of the menu because I forgot at the table. The hostess was standing right there so I figured I should say something. She had heard of paleo, and we talked about it for a minutes. You never know you can change someone’s life with a simple conversation. It could be nothing, but it could be something!
- In general, be careful about eating out. As you may already know, restaurants aren’t using olive oil or coconut oil. There’s a reason why we don’t eat vegetable oil, so eat it very much in moderation. It’s critical you do not eat out everyday.