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Good for You!

Checking restaurant menus and nutritional information online ahead of time can help you plan a healthier dining experience.

Once you are ordering at the drivethrough or sitting down in a restaurant, simply make healthier choices. “Most places have fruit you can get in place of fries, and they have salads too,” Diehl said. She also recommends ordering a child’s meal to save on calories, fat and sodium. “In the ‘50s, when you ordered a hamburger, fries and a drink from a fast food restaurant, it was the size of a kids’ meal today—that’s the right portion size,” Diehl said. At a restaurant, split your meal in half, and ask for a take-out box immediately. “That way you’ll only eat half, and you can save the other half for the next day’s lunch or dinner, which will save you time and calories,” Diehl said. People often think that the only option for eating quickly on the run is fast food, but she said supermarkets are great options while traveling. “I go straight to the deli section, where there are wraps, prepared salads, olive bars and fresh produce. You won’t spend any more than you would at a fast food

restaurant, and you’ll get more fruits, vegetables and whole grains.” For healthy eating at home, Diehl also suggests pre-planning. If you have bags of frozen veggies in the freezer, they are easy to use on days when you have limited time to cook. For a quick meal you can brown chicken tender pieces, add a bag of frozen veggies, heat a pouch of microwaveable brown rice and mix it all together. In minutes you have a meal that includes a lean protein, a whole grain and vegetables. “Meals at home don’t have to be elaborate; simple is key,” Diehl said. “You just need to have healthy foods that are readily available.” And the same is true for packed lunches. After you come home from grocery shopping, Diehl suggests washing and cutting up all the fruits and fresh vegetables. If you leave them in containers in the refrigerator, they are easy to grab on the go.

“When people are in a hurry, they don’t always make appropriate choices..” choices



November 2011 Cultivate  
November 2011 Cultivate  

Introduced in July 2008, Cultivate is published quarterly with a focus on safe, fresh and locally grown foods and the Virginia farms that pr...