There’s nothing like ordering a Healthy takeaway as a treat. Not having to worry about what to cook. Or whether you have all the ingredients in the presses or a meal that suits everyone’s taste. A meal that takes no effort other than a tap on an app is a gift from the heavens. But let’s be honest, it’s January, that time of year when we all start to worry about our waistlines.
Takeaway food has a bad reputation for being an unhealthy option. But eating fast food doesn’t have to be fattening. It’s all about the choices you make. Whether that’s branching out and choosing a healthier place to order from. Or looking at your favourite restaurants healthier options.
You can make a few swaps and substitutes and still treat yourself to takeaway night. Fast food doesn’t have to be bad food. Let’s take a look at some of the things you can do to make takeaways healthier.
Not all fast food is created equal. Some of it is healthier than others. Even if you want to indulge yourself with something particularly calorific, you can still make choices that keep you on track. A delicious burger with all the toppings, a portion of chips and a fizzy drink averages at about 1500 calories. But if you swap out the fizzy drink for water; the calorie intake reduces by about 200-300 calories.
It might be time to branch out and try some new restaurants and see what they have to offer and whether their takeaway is healthy or not. More and more vegan options are springing up if you want to reduce your meat intake. Or perhaps cut down on saturated fats.
There are now more types of Asian cuisine on the market than ever before. Japanese, Korean, Thai and Asian fusion to name a few. There are usually more vegetable options at these restaurants and things like sushi and ramen are a slightly healthier option than your average takeaway.
At most restaurants or fast food chains, there are always a few healthier swaps that could make your meal lighter.
Instead of a creamy curry, go for something tomato-based and spicy. Always choose boiled or steamed rice over fried rice or pilau. Don’t choose battered chicken when you’re ordering a Chinese. Instead, opt for something like chicken and veg in oyster sauce. Even a pizza you can load up with more veg to get some of your five a day.
It’s advisable to increase the vegetable content slightly anywhere you can, even if the vegetables don’t come in the healthiest form. For instance, some people get coleslaw and mushy peas with their fish and chip with a much smaller portion of chips.
Takeaway and restaurant portions can be big. Getting smaller portions or sharing a big portion is a good way to eat only what you really need.
If you’re used to eating big portions and portion control feels difficult for you could try ‘mindful eating’. This just means slowing down, savouring your food and chewing it properly. It’s recommended that we chew our food 32 times before swallowing it which is something people rarely do.
Perhaps your treat day is a day when you really want to indulge and none of these swaps or reductions sounds appealing. That’s fine as long as you’re willing to make healthier choices for the rest of the week.
Ordering a takeaway or even fast food does not mean throwing healthy choices out the window. A few healthy swaps, some reductions and a more balanced way of looking at your weekly diet can be easy to achieve.