Is going out to eat "paleo?" How much n-6?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 20, 2012 at 1:22 PM

I go out to eat a lot. Maybe 3-4 times a week. I guess it's safe to assume the worst and that they are cooking everything in rancid soy oil or some crap.

I usually eat the same thing everytime: scrambled eggs, some meat(ham or steak) and home-style potatoes.

How much PUFA is in this meal?

How often do you eat out?

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10 Answers

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on March 20, 2012
at 01:29 PM

I don't eat out all that often; 1 meal per week, sometimes 2. I don't worry about it that much since I know my overall n-6 consumption is low.

You could easily tweak your standard meal to reduce your PUFA exposure - order hardboiled/poached eggs and a baked potato and you're good to go.

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on March 20, 2012
at 01:41 PM

I eat out as little as possible. A nice dinner out with good people is definitely more important than the health properties of one meal to me but that being said, for nearly all my eating I cook at home. Especially for utilitarian stuff like lunch and breakfast I really wanna eat my food.

More and more these days though I will say that I've come to think that perhaps the most important things for overall health and the ability to not worry so much about food are:

  • resistance training with weights with compound movements
  • maintaining normal bodyweight - IOW avoiding overweight
  • cooking your own food



on March 20, 2012
at 01:42 PM

It costs me the same if not less to eat eggs, meat and potatoes at home that are much better quality and way more delicious than anything I could get at most restaurants.

Once I had some home-cooked pastured eggs scrambled with Kerrygold, I very quickly lost my taste for restaurant eggs. Same thing with grass-fed steaks, fresh bacon, organic potatoes, etc.

Do you just have an aversion to cooking breakfast?



on March 20, 2012
at 05:25 PM

If eating out is unavoidable, then just supplement with fish oil to mitigate high omega-6s. Perhaps only on the days you eat out. I know I've cut back on my fish oil dose to days when I eat less-than-optimal paleo.



on March 20, 2012
at 03:20 PM

I eat out a lot. More than I should, I'm sure. I stick to the basic Paleo rules when I'm out (GF, DF, no beans, no grains, etc) but I'm almost sure 99% of the time there are some oils slipping in that aren't considered Paleo. You can stick with cold foods and stay pretty safe, like salads, etc, though if you care if your meat is grass fed, etc, you're not getting that either.

It all depends how strict you want to be. If you do, don't eat out, it's that simple. Some of us can't avoid it (or perhaps don't want to?) and so we make allowances. I cook for my kids and my husband and I at home most of the time, I work full time, it happens and I don't stress about it.


on March 20, 2012
at 02:55 PM

Not sure of n-6 content. But, if you're concerned then don't eat out as often, make wise menu choices (if at all possible) and/or supplement with a quality n-3 supplement to put you in better n-3/n-6 ratio/balance (I supplement with Carlson's liquid n-3 oil, good stuff!).

When I eat out I make sure to ask them to cook in "real" butter (eggs) and not add any dairy or thickener to eggs (some places use pancake batter as a thickener, yuck!). Otherwise, the only other places I occasionally eat out at are Chipotle (salad/bowl, no beans/rice, double meat w/ guac) or Outback Steakhouse (steak and steamed broccoli, yum!).



on March 20, 2012
at 02:16 PM

Restaurants use the cheapest plastic oils.If that is of concern I'd avoid them.I work in a restaurant and I have hard time sticking to perfect paleo,let alone a customer.



on March 20, 2012
at 02:04 PM

hardly ever anymore, can't trust most places and the ones I do are expensive like a French or Spanish place. And you can't expect them to use only olive oil- nobody cooks with coconut oil. Cooking is best, makes lots and refrig



on March 20, 2012
at 01:43 PM

I suspect they fry everything in canola oil. If you get lucky maybe you can find some restaurant that does things differently. I'd love to see the day restaurants advertise loudly about this. I've noticed one advertise no trans-fats. I suppose that is better than nothing.

I don't eat out much any more. It is rather hard for me to figure out the risk/benefit ratio, and since eschewing the whole scene appeals to my introverted nature, I eat at home.


on March 20, 2012
at 01:31 PM

I eat out as little as possible and understand that if I do go to eat out, there's about a 99% chance that it's not going to be paleo.

Even though I may order paleo foods, we can't control the method of cooking. I have worked in several restaurants throughout my life and every one I worked at uses vegetable oil (cheapest) to cook with - not paleo!

I'd just do my best to order as paleo as possible and realize the best way to monitor what goes in your body is to actually prepare it yourself.

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