Takeaway Diet

Updated February 28, 2017

For many people, one of the main reasons that healthy eating and weight loss is difficult is because they simply do not have the time to plan and prepare healthy meals. Many people rely on takeout or takeaway for lunch and dinner. With a little preparation and dedication, you can still follow a takeaway diet while losing weight. When eating on this diet, be aware of portion sizes and aim to follow the Department of Health and Human Services' recommendation of 30 to 60 minutes of physical activity most days.


When ordering food from a Chinese restaurant, be sure to avoid dishes with "crispy" or "battered" in their names; these foods typically are fried. Other things to avoid are meals that are packed with peanuts or cashews, which are high in fat. Healthy options include stir fry, steamed entr´┐Żes and chow mein. When selecting your protein, choose chicken, seafood or tofu for a low-fat and lower-calorie option. Your best bets at a Chinese restaurant include the Szechuan shrimp, vegetable chow mein and chicken with string beans.


When it comes to Italian food, you probably have images of hefty plates of pasta blanketed with cheese or a heavy cream sauce. Unfortunately, these items are not diet-friendly, yet this does not mean you cannot eat at an Italian restaurant when on the takeaway diet. Simply stick to tomato-based sauces or primavera sauces, which are usually packed with vegetables. Some of your best choices for takeaway at an Italian restaurant include linguine with red clam sauce, spaghetti with marinara sauce or a slice of mushroom pizza. Remember to pay attention to portion sizes and if available, order whole wheat pasta.


To lose weight, you probably are going to have to skip the unlimited chips and salsa at Mexican restaurants, but this does not mean you have to avoid this flavourful cuisine. When looking at the menu, avoid fried or crisp items or dishes that are heavy on the cheese, refried beans, sour cream or guacamole. Excellent takeaway options at a Mexican restaurant include the chicken soft tacos, shrimp fajitas or a vegetable and bean burrito.


In general, Japanese cuisine is fairly healthy and low in calories and saturated fats. At most Japanese restaurants, you will find foods prepared with fresh ingredients and little oil, and that focus on small portion sizes. When ordering at a Japanese restaurant, steer clear of foods with the word tempura or tonkatsu, both meaning "fried," but otherwise the menu at a Japanese restaurant is takeaway diet-friendly. Some of your best choices include the tuna and cucumber roll, soba noodles with tofu or seafood and vegetables and grilled chicken teriyaki.


If you love burgers, it may be difficult to eliminate this food from your diet. Do not worry--on the takeaway diet, you are still allowed to indulge on a good burger. When looking at the menu, remember portion control and avoid unnecessary add-ons. Items such as cheese, mushrooms, onions and bacon can quickly add on unnecessary calories. Begin by looking for a burger that is between one-quarter to one-third of a pound. If available, ask for a whole-wheat bun but; if it's not an option, ask that the bun be prepared without butter. A healthy burger takeaway choice features only lettuce, tomato, pickles, onions and maybe a slice of cheese. Top your burger with ketchup or mustard. When it comes to fries, if you cannot avoid these, order the child's size and try to minimise consumption.

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About the Author

Fitzalan Gorman has more than 10 years of academic and commercial experience in research and writing. She has written speeches and text for CEOs, company presidents and leaders of major nonprofit organizations. Gorman has published for professional cycling teams and various health and fitness websites. She has a Master of Arts from Virginia Tech in political science and is a NASM certified personal trainer.