Often when we decide to lose weight, we tend to stop eating out or perhaps just allow ourselves one cheat meal a week. But with so much of our social lives revolving around food, it isn’t easy to avoid going out for a meal.One of the most popular choices in India is Chinese food, solet’s talk about how to choose wisely when eating at a Chinese restaurant. While you may have noticed large amounts of oil in the food you eat, what you don’t know is how much corn starch has been used to thicken up the dishes. If you’re going low-carb then just skipping the rice and noodles aren’t going to help. The soups and vegetable dishes use cornstarch as well. If you think going vegetarian for Chinese is a better option, think again. Also, the high amounts of sugar in Chinese sauces may be unknowingly throwing all your hopes of eating healthy out the window. Here are a few tips that you should keep in mind while dining at a Chinese restaurant:

Ask for steamed wontons instead of fried ones

Stick to clear soup with a ton of vegetables and avoid the thicker sweet corn, hot’n’sour or manchow soups

If you’re not carb controlling then order steamed rice, rather than fried rice

Ask the waiter if they can hold the cornstarch. Perhaps tell them you are allergic to cornstarch, a little white lie never hurt anyone and will actually help you. (read more about eating out right)

Order light stir fries with little or no sauce, or better yet ask for the sauce on the side so you can control how much you are eating.

Save yourself calories, order steamed fish, chicken and vegetables rather than stir fries.

Sip on Chinese tea throughout the meal, it helps with digestion and will also make you fuller quicker.

Guess what? Dessert is allowed! Go ahead and have that fortune cookie, it is actually low in calories, delicious and if you’re fortune is good you won’t need to open a second one.

Portion control is critical. Order one appetizer, one main dish and one carb between two people and share. It’s important to know when to stop.

If you’re good at it, or actually even if you’re bad, use chopsticks. You’ll eat slower and feel fuller faster (you may also just get fed up trying and stop eating altogether).

That's it! Simple tips to enjoy your meal guilt-free. Now go make that reservation.

Read next: Watching your weight? How to order at an Italian restaurant

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