Dining out is thought of as a treat for many of us. Whether you find yourself out for lunch or traveling and searching the menu for choices that will help you achieve your body composition goals, here is a simple guide to navigate the offerings at your local sushi joint.
Pick your protein:
- Sashimi is the best choice for a great source of lean protein. Served without rice, I like wild caught salmon, tuna or prawn sashimi.
- Some restaurants will offer lean cuts of beef or chicken, although they tend to be covered with teriyaki sauce. I usually do not stress about sauces and dressings (they are secondary to picking enough protein + veg for the most part) but the thick teriyaki glazes are packed with sugar and I personally do not love them!
Get your greens:
- Sushi restaurants are great for offering a tasty green side salad. I do not stress about the dressing here, but often ask for it on the side so I can determine the amount I use.
- Tuna Sashimi or Tataki salad. This is a common choice which includes a large serving of veggies, seared or rare tuna and a light dressing.
- Spinach Gomae. This is steamed and cooled spinach with a peanut sauce. Once again, I do not stress about the sauce here. This is a perfect example of making balanced choices. Yes, there is sugar in the peanut sauce but this helps to keep me on track for the rest of the day and week! I am way less likely to have a dessert or treat later in the day when I follow this mindset.
What to skip?
- Deep-fried, battered appetizers are a great place to save yourself. Packing a ton of calories, often high in trans-fats and low in protein, fibre and water this is a great option to pass on.
- Huge rolls with tons of rice. Our goal is to fill up on fibre and protein without overloading the sodium or sauce and the designer super rolls are often packed with refined starchy carbs, minimal protein and low on the fibre.
How about drinks?
- This is an area that I find pretty easy to navigate. I pick water or green tea. That’s it! The occasional glass of wine is on my horizon but I avoid all sugary drinks and sodas and do not miss it one bit.
I hope this helps you the next time you are out at your favourite Japanese restaurant. Personally I love sushi and finding ways to eat the foods I love in moderation without affecting my waistline is one of the ways I keep my eating habits sustainable.