Well, here I go...my opinion...ready???
First, let me say that most people who know me could tell you what I eat on most days of the week. I do not change my eating plan too often because it is easier for me to keep it simple and well, let's say "contained."
I spent many, many years counting calories and obsessing over fat grams and portion size and thinking about how many calories I sweat out at the gym and will that cover the calories I ate for that day and thinking about the next day and the next meal and not eating the last row of cookies that are calling my name from the kitchen and if I should just eat the whole row to stop the insanity in my mind thinking about those cookies and if I ate them, maybe I would be fine if I just do an extra hour of cardio at the gym the next day.
So, you can tell that I had quite a few issues with food and calorie counting and have always been hyper-aware of what I am eating etc. Over the years I learned to let go of calorie counting because I started to look at food as fuel and not a number.
I also became more honest with what works best for me because I am not good with too many choices and I do not have a lot of self-control when faced with foods that taste great but that are empty in nutrients. Those empty foods end up making me feel physically sick and angry at myself because I cannot just eat a normal serving, I need to eat the whole bag.
So, for myself, I keep my food simple, nutrient dense, tasty and easy without counting calories and always allowing myself treats and splurges, here and there.
Last night was the second time I was out to dinner at a restaurant where the calories were listed after each item. The first time I noticed this, I was at Portillo's. Yes, I was there (to all of you that just gasped.) I would never choose to go there because I cannot find anything that is "Deb Approved" but I also do not impose my way of eating on anyone else.
If that is the chosen restaurant, I am fine with that and usually eat something at home and then get a small salad (they are not that great at Portillo's) and enjoy the company of the people I am with.
HERE IS THE POINT OF THIS BLOG:
WHY, OH WHY would they put the calories on a menu at a place like Portillo's????? You KNOW I promote healthy and clean eating and I care about all of us that struggle with food/body/weight issues. That is and has been my life. BUT AT PORTILLO'S?
Portillo's is the place you go when you want to splurge and treat and leave with a food hangover. It is the place you plan to go a month ahead so that you can eat all the Portillo's famous, greasy food .
I can understand if you are going to a restaurant that serves healthy food for people who do want to count calories and want to eat at a place that allows them to stay on track of their healthy eating plan. But if you are going to Portillo's, why in the world would you want to know how many calories are in your COMBO BEEF & CHAR-GRILLED SAUSAGE (920 Cal) or in your PEASANT PASTA (2160 Cal) or in your Portillo’s CHOCOLATE CAKE (720 Cal.)
In my opinion, this takes away all the fun of eating at a place like Portillo's. If you choose to eat at a place known for its 720 calorie slice of chocolate cake and its BIG BEEF (640 Cal,) doesn't it defeat the purpose to show the calories?
It is like a sick and twisted game of guilt and self-sabotage. If you know you could have the meal that is less than 500 calories but you choose the meal with 720 calories, there has to be an internal emotional response and I would think it would be negative. But this is where I need some comments/responses/opinions/feedback from all of my readers.
And last night I was at the Cheesecake factory, a place I am not that fond of but a place diverse enough for most people, and there it was again, in my face, on the menu, telling me how many calories I was going to eat with each item.
I know I must sound dramatic but I think this ruins the experience of eating at a restaurant. Now, I know I am not the norm, I am very picky and I do not go out to eat all that often. Because I had such an extreme reaction to these two places and the calories listed on the menus, I wanted to hear from other people who do eat out often and like or dislike the calories listed on the menus.
I think it would be a great idea if there was a calorie menu available to those who want to see the calories but to leave them off the regular menu. I believe it should be a choice to see those numbers, not having them forced on the diner.