How to Navigate an All-You-Can-Eat Style Restaurant

Have you ever been on a vacation and the only options for dining were buffets? Perhaps you were looking for a place to eat on the weekend and a new buffet caught your eye! Buffets can be difficult to navigate, but it doesn’t mean it is impossible to eat well at one. 

The next time you find yourself at a buffet or an all-you-can-eat style event, here are some tips to help you navigate through so you can leave satisfied and proud of your decisions. 


First, Scan The Buffet

Before you grab a plate and begin to fill it up, make sure you’re picking what you truly want by taking a lap around the buffet. Plan ahead so you know what to choose and what to limit.



Be Selective

When you begin to make your choices, look for items that are cooked in particular ways. Foods that are steamed, grilled or broiled are lower in fat than items that are fried or have heavy sauces. 


Start with Veggies

Begin your meal by having a salad or filling half your plate with vegetables. By enjoying lots of vegetables you are filling up on healthier options and will be less tempted to eat more of the unhealthier options.  You can find lots of different types of veggies at a buffet and are able to have your choice. 



Take Your Time

When you are eating at a buffet, be mindful of your fullness level and how you feel. Be sure to eat slowly to avoid overeating or feeling sick. When you feel like you want to go up for more or to get desserts, ask yourself if you’re truly still hungry. 


Watch your Drink

Remember that drinks with added sugar can increase the calories of your meal and cause you to have a lot more sugar than you need. When at a buffet, focus on drinking water or unsweetened teas rather than having sugary alcoholic drinks, sodas, or lemonades. 



Using these tips when at a buffet can help you make choices that will leave you satisfied with your meal and just full enough. Remember that you are in full control of your choices and can choose what you want to enjoy without feeling like you have to try it all. Slow down and focus on the things that you really want to have. 


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