I used to wonder at that girl. Why would you order salad when you could order something better, something delicious, and fatty, and worth the price? Please, I totally agreed with Homer Simpson when he chanted, ” You don’t win friends with salad. You don’t win friends with salad.” Heck, there’s even a book called Skinny Chicks Don’t Eat Salad. (Not dissing the book, ’cause I haven’t read it. Just sayin’.)
Now, I know why she does it. I have become that girl (well, woman).
Don’t get me wrong. I will not order a side salad or a salad with just greens. Uh-uh. It must follow my normal eating guidelines. What does this translate to?
- at least 2 cups of veggies (not usually a problem – it’s a salad)
- 3 oz or so of meat, preferably lean (grilled chicken, grilled shrimp, and sirloin steak are what I usually choose)
- dressing on the side, so that I can limit it to 1/2 to 1 tbsp
- 1 to 2 servings of starch
Getting a healthy starch is the tricky part of the salad order, because from what I’ve seen, it’s usually garlic bread or cheese toast or, with my favourite salad, banana bread. Sometimes you can get rice, whole wheat pasta, corn, or beans, but not that often. I try not to get hung up on this, though, because my diet is healthy enough that it can absorb the occasional piece of garlic bread. Don’t they say it’s all about moderation?
Restaurant Salads I Seem to Order A Lot:
- Moxie’s Top Sirloin Steak Salad with Goat Cheese – comes with banana bread (yum!); I order it with the dressing on the side
- Boston Pizza’s Baja Salad – you can choose between shrimp and chicken and it comes with garlic bread; I get the dressing on the side and usually only eat half of the bread
- McDonald’s Southwest Salad with Grilled Chicken – definitely choose the grilled over the crispy chicken; I only add a bit of dressing and usually don’t add the tortilla strips
Why I’ve Become That Girl:
Oh, I totally get why you don’t order salad when you go out. I don’t order salad all the time, either. If I go to The Keg, it seems wrong to order anything but steak (although I did order some fish there last time I went, and it was pretty good). I will also order fish fairly often, depending on how it’s prepared, partly because it’s healthy and partly because I can’t seem to make good fish at home. Plus, I don’t enjoy it when the house smells like fish.
Salad is one of the few things you can order that can pretty much guarantee that you’ll get a few servings of veggies at a meal. Why is that important to me?
- Because veggies are good for you (vitamins, minerals, fibre, water, etc.)
- Because I need to eat lots of veggies to feel full and not want to gnaw at my arm later
- Because I try to eat healthfully most of the time, and that means I need to make healthy choices most of the time when I eat out, too
- Because veggies are low-calorie and filling, and I want to lose weight
- Because I feel superior to you when I eat lots of veggies and you order a clubhouse and fries (I’m only partly kidding)
I’ve had a fantasy for the past fifteen years that I could eat all the chocolate and bread I wanted and lose weight. Not gonna happen. Isn’t it Einstein who said that the definition of insanity was “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results?” Well, I’ve made major changes to how I eat and how much I exercise, and it’s working. If that means I order a salad when everyone else order lasagna, so be it. You can be sure I won’t be the one at the table regretting my order later.