Dinner Dates- Tricks for Eating Up While Slimming Down

Challenge: What can I order on a date that is good for my waistline but doesn’t make me look like I’m on a diet?

Solution: Come prepared, splurge appropriately and don’t worry too much.


We don’t want to be that girl who always just orders a salad, hold the dressing. That’s no fun. On the other hand, we don’t want to toss out all our good eating habits every time we go out on a date. There is a happy medium.

I have always loved to eat. My problem usually comes down to overeating. I do not want to stuff myself on the first date but I also do not want to settle for a simple salad. I have been on dates where I ate a little too much and felt bloated and unattractive in my dress or tight jeans. My trick is to order something that is satisfying but not the most filling dish on the menu. I stick to simple dishes that are easy to eat and share. I also try and fit in a workout before the date. It gives me a great boost of energy and makes me look better in my outfit!

There is a balance to maintaining your figure, but also eating with an appetite. Follow these steps and you will feel good, maintain a fit bod, and look your best.

 The first step is to survey the menu before you arrive. Thanks to the Internet- and apps like Yelp and Open Table, you can usually find menus online from most restaurants these days. I also decide what I want before I go on a date or to a meeting, so I can focus on the conversation rather than scouring the menu. When he is looking at the menu, make sure to glance at it. You do not want him to think you’ve been preparing for this date for weeks. You want to come across easy going, picking your choices in a timely fashion without contemplating “Is this too fattening?” or any other questions of the sort.

Second, choose a dish that is going to be easy to eat without sound effects.

Third, splurge on the appetizer. This is the food you will most likely be sharing with your date so go nuts. Get something you will both thoroughly enjoy without feeling guilty about it.

Fourth, for every cocktail or glass of wine, drink a glass of water. You may have to pee but it is better than getting too drunk. Nobody likes a hot mess in a restaurant.

 Fifth, enjoy a healthy dish main course without going too extreme. You have the rest of the week to eat as clean as possible. Do not worry about the small details that may make the dish healthier (light oil, no sauce, etc.). Just completely enjoy it and get right back on track the next day.

Sixth, split a dessert. Do not feel pressure to get your own dessert. It will be more romantic if you split it anyway.

Most importantly, enjoy yourself! If you only take away one of these tips that is perfectly fine. Just have fun, be yourself and keep an open mind. Some dates may be terrible (always fun to tell those stories to your girlfriends) while other dates might just be magic. Enjoy the journey!


For date night recipes, pre-dinner workouts and more please check out my articles on SHAPE.com  and follow me on Twitter @NoraTobin!


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