Healthy Restaurant Meals: 500 Calorie Mexican, Italian & Chinese Food


Dr Oz: Restaurant Meal Swaps

Even if you’re dieting and pursuing your goals, it’s hard to shake the craving for your favorite restaurant meals. But fitness expert Jim Karas, who shared his Long & Lean Diet Plan, stuck around to share how you can avoid the diet traps and temptations while still enjoying some of your takeout favorites. The next time you’re salivating over Chinese takeout, Mexican dinner, or an Italian date night, don’t despair. Get Jim’s strategies for Healthy Restaurant Meals with Chinese Beef & Broccoli, Mexican Fajitas and Italian Fish.

Dr Oz: Healthy Chinese Food – Beef & Broccoli

Dr Oz: Healthy Restaurant Meals Under 500 Calories

Dr Oz & Jim Karas outlined 500 calorie Healthy Restaurant Meals, including Mexican Fajitas.


If you’re craving Chinese, choose the Beef & Broccoli entree. Here’s how Jim broke it down:

  • 1 cup Beef & Broccoli
  • 1/2 cup Brown Rice
  • 2 Potstickers
  • Total: 495 Calories

Watch out for Brown Rice at Chinese restaurants, because it’s not as healthy as you think. It’s marinated in butter and oil, soaking up extra fat and sneaking unwanted calories into your dinner. You can always ask how your restaurant cooks its brown rice if you’re undecided (but it’ll probably turn out to be disappointing news).

Dr Oz: Healthy Mexican Food – Mexican Fajitas

For that Mexican food dinner (yum!), Jim said you should stick to fajitas. For example:

  • 4 ounces Chicken
  • 2 cups Peppers
  • 1 cup Onions
  • 1 Tortilla with Salsa
  • Total: 484 Calories

You may think Veggie Fajitas are the way to go on a diet, but Jim said they don’t fill you up like protein will. (I like this diet advice, but I’ll go along with any diet plan involving Mexican food.)

Skip the Guacamole at Mexican restaurants, because a single chip with Guac will cost you 100 calories. (And who eats just one chip? They always have to refill my basket, so apparently I might as well skip the entree altogether.)

Healthy Restaurant Meals: Italian Fish Dinner

There’s still one more entree left among Jim’s Healthy Restaurant Meals. Here’s how to enjoy a healthier Italian dinner: order the fish.

  • 4 ounces Fish
  • 2 cups Asparagus
  • 1 glass Red Wine
  • Total: 489 calories

Look out for the bread and olive oil trick while you’re waiting for your food, though. It’s sneaking in more of those hidden calories you’re trying to avoid.

Will you be trying any of these the next time you go out for dinner?


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