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Restaurant Woes...............

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Old 12-20-2012, 09:12 PM   #1
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Default Restaurant Woes and WINS!! Write your reviews and tips here!!

Last night was my 1st venture at a restaurant since I started IP. I am determined to stay OP no matter what.

We went to Joe's American Bar and Grill. I thought it was a better choice than Uno's.

It was such a PIA. EVERYTHING on the menu had something added that was fat or carbs. Even a house salad had a ton of crap on it. The only veggie choice was steamed broccoli.

But if course, they had gluten free pasta, the new fad. (No offense to those who are allergic.)
My point is there were not even slightly IP friendly alternatives without making a bunch of changes. I ended up spending about $25 for a burger w/mushrooms (not sauteed) the most basic salad they had with 99% of the crap taken out and steamed veggies which had some some sort of butter on them. (I said no butter)
I don't mind the cost, I have done low carb at restaurants before, but it was so annoying.

I am surprised at this because this is a chain and they don't seem to have hopped on to the healthy bandwagon. I am sure they think some of their choices are healthy, but once you get the sides that come with, forget it.

I did start off bad because I mixed a IP drink to take with me to my cousins and in my rush, left it on the counter. So I was starving when I got to the restaurant. I had Scorbett on bat phone helping me get a snack at CVS. (I went to a concert last night)

I was wondering if we could start a thread about helpful hints for dining out, even rate what restaurants were good, esp chains of course, and what ones weren't helpful.

I wouldn't give Joe's even one dancing carrot.
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:38 PM   #2
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Since I was traveling last week, I had to eat at a number of restaurants. I was really wary about it since it was only week #2 OP. Here are a couple of things I ordered. I was always very specific that I was on a highly restricted diet.

For breakfast: Egg white/egg beater omelet with no butter or oil; peppers, mushrooms, scallions; no sides of toast, bacon or hash browns. It was great, believe it or not!

For dinner: We ended up once at a sports bar so I ordered a 6 oz. strip steak, salad with no dressing (yeah, I'm weird, but I don't mind plain salad); steamed broccoli (I was very specific that they were to have no oil or butter).

I also went out to dinner closer to home and ended up in an Italian restaurant with my husband. I had a salad with grilled shrimp, scallops and calamari and again was very specific about no added fat. The waitress even found some cider vinegar for me.

When I've ended up at parties with buffets, I've eaten steamed shrimp, celery and broccoli. And I've gotten in the habit of always having an IP item close at hand just in case there's nothing suitable for me to eat.

I'm not shy about sending back my food if it's not as I specified. That said, I've been really fortunate since starting the diet as people have been very accommodating so far.

I'm sure others who have been OP will have lots more suggestions ... I'll be looking for them myself, as I have a lot more restaurant meals coming up!
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:41 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by NinjaNurse View Post
Last night was my 1st venture at a restaurant since I started IP. I am determined to stay OP no matter what.

We went to Joe's American Bar and Grill. I thought it was a better choice than Uno's.

It was such a PIA. EVERYTHING on the menu had something added that was fat or carbs. Even a house salad had a ton of crap on it. The only veggie choice was steamed broccoli.



I was wondering if we could start a thread about helpful hints for dining out, even rate what restaurants were good, esp chains of course, and what ones weren't helpful.

I wouldn't give Joe's even one dancing carrot.
I think a sticky addition on restaurant chains is a GREAT idea...I am giving you 4 dancing carrots!
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:52 PM   #4
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I think a sticky addition on restaurant chains is a GREAT idea...I am giving you 4 dancing carrots!
I agree!! That would be terrific!
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Old 12-20-2012, 10:22 PM   #5
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Thank you everyone! we can keep it here or I can start a new thread. I'm on my phone but when I go on the PC I'll see if I can edit my original post.
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Old 12-21-2012, 05:38 AM   #6
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Thank you everyone! we can keep it here or I can start a new thread. I'm on my phone but when I go on the PC I'll see if I can edit my original post.
This is a great idea! We eat out a lot and my go-to is steak (be sure to tell them no butter since most places add it to sear the meat nicely) and steamed broccoli and/or plain salad. Any Chinese place will do steamed veggies and chicken or shrimp. Mine is kind enough to make a "sauce" from just chicken broth, soy sauce, and some spices (no cornstarch). Soy sauce and Chinese mustard mixed can help a bland, steamed dish taste pretty good. I've found that most places have something palatable on the menu, but will have to remember not to go to Joe's! Sounds like that was not an enjoyable dining experience!

Thanks, NinjaNurse, for the idea for this thread! I look forward to seeing how others' dining out experiences have been.
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Old 12-21-2012, 08:28 AM   #7
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I try to avoid eating out too often, but usually the best places to go are steak houses. They typically grill all of their meat, and there are usually plenty of veggie sides (just make sure to ask for no oil and no butter).

The easiest salad to modify at most restaurants is a cesar salad. Just ask for no cheese, croutons or dressing. Ask for vinegar, oil and/or lemon to use for dressing.

My husband loves to go to Texas Roadhouse. Anyone who's been there before knows the menu there looks far from IP friendly. I've had some really good IP meals there. Always a steak and double veggies, no oil or butter.
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Old 12-21-2012, 09:20 AM   #8
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This is a great idea. I agree with ragdoll about Texas Roadhouse my hubby & I went there last week for dinner. The one near me was very good about making the food the way I wanted. Longhorn as well will make your food the way you like it. I also bring with me a small container of apple cider vinger to use on my salad with the olive oil the restaurant provides.
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Old 12-21-2012, 09:26 AM   #9
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I eat out for lunch every day and have found something on the menu or something I can modify at every place. Here is a list of places: Fuddruckers, Pappadeaux's, any Mexican place, Longhorn Steakhouse, Logan's, BBQ joints. My suggestion is to stick with places that have fish and beef or salad bars
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Old 12-21-2012, 09:27 AM   #10
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Applebees has always worked with me no matter what city I was in. I always order either a 7oz steak, dry cooked and a double order of steamed broccoli with no butter or the shrimp and spinach salad with double the shrimp and no dressing or almonds.
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Old 12-21-2012, 09:29 AM   #11
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I think the key is to research the menus online before you go and try to influence the choice of restaurant based on that.

Ruby Tuesdays is a good choice because they have two vegetable options (grilled zucchini and steamed broccoli) and steak. Plus they have that salad bar where you can put on only the things that are OP.

I have been to Disney 3 times since being on IP, and every restaurant that I was to there (Tony's twice, Narcoosees, Brown Derby twice, Grand Floridian Cafe) was very accomodating.

I have also been to Outback which has IP friendly veggies and entrees.

AMC Dine-in movie theaters also have plenty of healthy options.

I'm not sure it is a national chain, but Passion Fish restaurants are IP friendly as well.

It is a good idea to keep some of the Walden Farms salad dressings in your purse. I also have packets of EVOO and vinegar that I carry around.

Good luck and keep the suggestions coming!!
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Old 12-21-2012, 11:03 AM   #12
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Applebees has always worked with me no matter what city I was in. I always order either a 7oz steak, dry cooked and a double order of steamed broccoli with no butter or the shrimp and spinach salad with double the shrimp and no dressing or almonds.
LOL those are my go-to items at Applebees too!

I have a practiced mantra for when I go to a restaurant:

Gluten Allergy
Dairy Allergy (including butter)

Unfortunately not all restaurants will play nice unless they think there's some liability involved. I find it just simplifies things if I can't spot something "safe" on the menu that doesn't require special ordering.
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Old 12-21-2012, 11:42 AM   #13
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I refuse to order a salad at a restaurant

Restaurants (red lobster, Applebee's, Cheddars, outback)
I always get steak and shrimp, or fish. With broccoli

If I have to eat fast food, I order a grilled chicken sandwich and eat just the chicken

Smoothie king - low carb or chocolate protein w/ NO turbinado. Small (check cals and carbs and make your decision about this one)
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Old 12-21-2012, 12:02 PM   #14
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I completely avoided eating out during p1 , except once. And wouldn't you know the one time I wanted celery to chomp on they were out of it. Lol. This was a pub restaurant and had it on their menu with buffalo chicken, which my dh got. So, I asked for plain tomatoes and cukes and it was pretty unappetizing...it was a retirement party and the table was filled with colorless fried appetizers...
Great thread idea!!!
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Old 12-21-2012, 07:27 PM   #15
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I eat out for lunch every day and have found something on the menu or something I can modify at every place. Here is a list of places: Fuddruckers, Pappadeaux's, any Mexican place, Longhorn Steakhouse, Logan's, BBQ joints. My suggestion is to stick with places that have fish and beef or salad bars
My husband won 2 $25 dollar GC's to Longhorn Steakhouse at his work Christmas party!!
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