Monday, April 28, 2008

Penny and Pound Wise

What's a diet and health conscious penny pincher to do? With the a gallon of gas hovering around $4.oo; is there room in the budget for a pricey pomegranate smoothie or an organically grown heirloom tomato salad? If the downturn in the economy is taking a bite out of your food dollar- here are some tips from dietitian Alice Henneman, Extension Educator University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension in Lancaster County - to help keep restaurant dining from becoming endangered.
Divide & Conquer
Whenever possible, make it a practice to divide a large portion at a restaurant in half BEFORE you start eating. You'll halve BOTH the calories and the cost of your meal!
Think "planned-overs" rather than "left-overs." Some people even make it a practice to ask for a "doggie bag" at the beginning rather than end of the meal. They remove half their food immediately so it's out-of-sight and remains out of their mouth!
NOTE: To handle take-home food safely, TWO hours from the time of serving is the maximum time perishable foods should be at room temperature, ONE hour if it's 90 degrees F or above. For best quality and safety, eat take-home foods in a day or two or freeze them for longer storage.
Penny-Wise AND Pound-Wise
When it comes to restaurant portion sizes, you can be penny-wise AND pound-wise. If you have a choice, order smaller servings sizes of foods such as burgers, fries, drinks, salads, soups and so on. They’re lower in calories and cost.
“Dine” during the Day
Some restaurants offer some of the same foods at noon as during the evening, only in smaller portion sizes and for less money. Want to eat at that fancy restaurant? Check their noontime menu!
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