Friday, July 31, 2009

A Different Kind of Restaurant

In the USA we are all too fat. Let me clarify that, I am too fat. I eat too much. And here is the weirdest part, I love to eat out. It has become a social thing for me, and for many people. We do not go to one another's homes anymore for a visit. We plan a meal at the local pizza parlor, or maybe a trip to the coffee shop for latte and scones.

Either way- you can also fill in the name of your favorite restaurant- we end up eating too much when we go out. In fact, we judge restaurants by how much food we get for the least amount of money. Pizza buffets, all-you-can eat places and the like are more popular than ever. Every town is filled with charity groups who sponsor all you can eat pancake/fish/chicken meals.

Even when we are not gorging ourselves on the endless salad bar (which often does not have a lot of salad) we feel cheated if our portions are not huge. We are trained in this way. We have limitless bread, chips and salsa, bread sticks or peanuts before we even get to the meal. Many times I have been full before my food even arrives.

Then, when the meal is over, I take home enough food for another meal. And that food, I am sad to confess, is often forgotten in the fridge until it is not worth eating. It has come to the place that sometimes I do not even take my leftovers home.

Over the last year I have lost about 40 pounds. I would like to lose about that much more, but I have made a discovery. When I eat out, I don't lose weight. I eat too much.

So, here as an idea for some enterprising entrepreneur. Start a restaurant that is diet conscious. Serve smaller portions. Offer healthier selections. Use less processed food items. Make desserts flavorful, fruity and healthy.

We live in a nation that spends billions of dollars every year on dieting. We buy diet books, diet cook-books, diet videos, pre-packaged diet foods and meals, exercise equipment, health club memberships, Weight-watchers memberships and fees... You get the idea. This is a no-brainer. Give us a place where we can socialize and watch our weight.

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