How to Dine Out: The Sugar Detox Way

We’re all about cooking up clean food at Five Journeys-especially as part of a sugar detox.  However, we get that sometimes life gets too busy or you need to take a night off from the kitchen. No worries! Check out these dining and takeout tips below to help you keep your eating out excursions sugar-detox approved!

Plan Before You Go

  • Planning ahead is the most important hack to staying on track with your healthier eating. Make sure to check menus online ahead of time for some good options you may be interested in ordering. Read nutrition facts or allergy labels, if listed on the website as well. If they don’t list them, call and ask for sugar-free options! 
  • In this current day and age, most restaurants are used to dealing with allergy and food restrictions. Don’t be afraid to ask at a coffee shop if they add sugar to their drinks, or if there’s sweetener added to a sauce or marinade at other restaurants.

Hydrate With Caution

  • Stick to water, seltzer water, unsweetened coffee, espresso, or unsweetened teas while detoxing. Start reading labels if you typically grab juices, smoothies, or sweetened beverages on the go, as the sugar adds up quickly!
    • If water gets to be boring for you, try adding slices of your favorite fruit or veggie with a fresh herb, to keep your tastebuds engaged. Some of our favorites are orange, lemon, lime, strawberry, mint, basil, melon, ginger, and cucumber.  
  • While our sugar detox allows fruit, juice is a heavy source of natural sugar at one time due to the lack of fiber. Stick to whole fruits while detoxing, and save the fresh squeezed juice for special occasions.
  • Avoid drinking away all of your sugar-giving up alcohol can be one of the best ways to fast track your weight loss! For our sugar detox, we recommend avoiding all alcohol-remember it’s only 7 days!

Don’t Assume Vegan=Healthy

  • Even though it may be dairy free, vegan menu items can often be denser in carbs and potentially, added sugar ro compromise for taste. For example, choosing a grain & legume bowl, or a butternut squash cranberry salad, would cause your blood sugar to spike much more than a bunless burger atop a salad with a handful of baked fries.
  • If you choose to eat vegan, go for dishes that have 50-75% of the plate filled with non-starchy vegetables, and choose a dense source of low carb protein like organic tofu to balance out the meal.

Beware Of Breakfast Choices

  • Breakfast is the most difficult sugar detox meal due to the carb-heavy options we are usually given. Think about a continental breakfast at a hotel, or work meeting- bagels, muffins, sandwiches, sugary yogurt, granola, and various pastries. Not only are all of these high in sugar and carbs, they are usually super low in protein that helps keep you energized and satiated throughout the day. 
  • Skip the carb heavy options and look for ones with a basis of protein such as eggs, turkey sausage, unsweetened Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, beans, nuts, or seeds. 
  • A good option is a veggie-filled omelet with goat cheese, or avocado on whole grain or sprouted grain toast with a side of turkey bacon or chicken sausage. 
  • Skip the smoothies and save those for making at home so you can control the added sugar!

Watch The Sauces

  • Make sure to check with restaurant staff about the sauces or marinades they may be using, as most of them have added sugar in them!
  • Common sugary sauces include teriyaki, pad thai sauce, tomato sauce, barbeque sauce, honey mustard, ketchup, and pre-made salad dressings.
  • Better options would include lemon, lime juice, or vinegar + olive oil for salads, or mustards, hot sauce, mayo, and soy sauce.

Keep It Simple

  • A good rule of thumb is the simpler the dish, the easier it is to identify added sugars. Getting a baked or broiled piece of fish or chicken with a baked potato and a side of veggies is a better bet than ordering the chicken pot pie or fish stew. The more ingredients you can identify on the plate, the easier it is to know its sugar-detox approved!  
  • Stick to dishes that use simple flavorings like lemon or lime juice, fresh herbs or lots of spice rather than those with creamy sauces, honey or maple glazes, or battered coatings.
Stay in the loop!