Japanese restaurants are a great choice if you’re following a healthy diet. Fried items are amazingly tasty but our emphasis will be on more protein and fresh vegetables. With a couple smart choices, you can eat healthy at any Japanese restaurant including Fire & Sticks.
Start your dining experience by order a glass a water, and perhaps hot tea. Both are great for your health and help to curb the appetite. Stay far away from soft drinks, juices, and sodas which are packed with sugars.
2. First Course
Many people will dive right in to the main course or a large appetizer, but in this case choose a salad for your first course (seaweed, cucumber, house, etc). If your meal comes with a salad you can skip this step.
3. Eating Habits
Use your chopsticks. Sometimes the pace at which we eat is too quick for our stomach to keep up, and we only feel “full” when we’ve already eaten far too much. Eating your meal with chopsticks will slow down your eating, allowing your stomach plenty of time to let you know when it’s full.
4. Soy Sauce
It’s a staple of many meals, but try filling the soy sauce dish with low sodium soy sauce and use small amounts at a time. A high sodium meal can cause bloating and swelling from water retention, affecting blood pressure. Soy sauce with reduced sodium usually contain about half of what the regular stuff does, allowing you to enjoy moderate amounts without worry.
5. The Main Course
Select entrees with lots of lean proteins (meats) and vegetables as well. The menu here at Fire & Sticks has many options containing chicken, beef, seafood and delicious fresh vegetables. Sashimi, a kind of sushi with no rice, is a great source of protein. If raw seafood turns you off, pick alternatives like grilled chicken, fish or shrimp. If you feel your entree is light on vegetables, simply add an extra side of them.
Avoid having too much white rice by limiting meals or sides containing lots of rice like sushi rolls and rice bowls. White rice is a refined carbohydrate which packs about 200 calories for every 1/2 cup. Try substituting brown rice in your meal as well to help keep blood sugar low and reduce your carb intake.
Maintaining a balance of lean protein and vegetables while limiting high carb and high sodium items is the best way to eat healthy at any Japanese restaurant.