The demand for food delivery and takeout surged amid social distancing norms during the pandemic. Almost 112 million Americans said they used a food delivery service in 2020, representing a 17% jump from the previous year. This trend is expected to continue even with the easing of covid-19 restrictions and the food delivery segment is projected to grow from an estimated $63 billion in 2022 to $96.5 billion by 2027.
If you’ve been relying on ordering takeout to add more convenience to your life, you’re certainly not alone. However, when doing so, there are a few things to avoid.
Does this sound surprising? Many people grab takeout when they don’t feel like cooking and wait to feel famished before ordering. When you’re ravenous, you are attracted to more unhealthy food, which is loaded with carbs, salt, and sugar. Deciding on what you wish to order beforehand will allow you to make healthier choices. For instance, you can substitute beef with chicken, as it packed with protein but is lean. A four-ounce serving of chicken has 20 grams of protein, but only 9 grams of fat. Plus, it’s rich in nutrients (like B vitamins, vitamin E, iron, potassium, magnesium, selenium, and zinc), boosts the immune system and increases energy. Ordering right is key to maintaining a healthy diet even with takeout. Else, you may end up eating empty calories, which can have a severe health impact.
When planning the trip to get takeout, consider mealtimes and the rush hour. If you visit the restaurant during mealtimes, you may need to wait longer for your food to arrive. Also, during rush hour, you’ll be stuck in traffic. You can avoid wasting a lot of time by planning ahead.
It’s a good idea to serve yourself on a plate, rather than digging into the takeout box. This is because the serving can be much more than what makes you full. It’s best to serve yourself the quality you typically eat, close the takeout box, and take your plate to the table to finish your meal. With this approach, you’ll eat the portion that fills you and feel less temped to overeat.
It’s a good habit to serve the portions you and your family are about to eat and keep the rest in the refrigerator. Remember the 2-hour rule, which dictates that food should not be left at room temperature for longer than two hours. Doing so can cause the food to rot.
There are some foods that spoil faster than you think. Sushi, dishes with berries, salads covered with dressing, corn of the cob, and cooked brown rice don’t keep long. Order smaller portions of these, so that you don’t have to store leftovers. Else, you can choose foods like roasted chicken, which can last three to four days in the fridge.
Takeout is such an easy option during a hectic day or when people drop in. Avoid these common mistakes to ensure that you continue to enjoy good health while also having a scrumptious meal.