Why your weight goes up so much when you EAT OUT and what to do about it

Do you feel paralyzed when you can’t eat out because every time your weight goes up 3 to 5 pounds? I know a lot of people struggle with this and it’s very tough on a family dynamic.

So let’s talk about what you can do and strategies that will help. 

  1. The first thing is you might be dieting too much without knowing. 

One thing that we hear when early on when people start Eat To Perform is they sometimes say “this is a lot of food”.

Ding ding ding. If you are not conscious of how much food you are taking in you can often overcompensate (meaning you under eat). Why is this bad? If you have ever thought you might have a bad metabolism that’s why it’s bad. Metabolism is largely a product of the food you eat and the muscle that you have. Both of which benefit from you eating an adequate amount of food most of the time.

This is a very common scenario for weekends and holidays for a lot of people. I will talk about strategies here in a bit to fix this.

  1. Forget what the serving size on your food logger says, it’s not even close to right.

If you are a restaurant you would like people to continue coming back to your restaurant and so you are going to cook things with more seasoning (mostly sodium based) and more fat (while the carbs aren’t irrelevant calories if you order french fries those calories aren’t hidden). How much different than the way you cook? Well, if you weigh and measure do you really think the 17 year old at the grill is considering that you might not want your weight to go up 5 pounds? Probably not.

If you eat mostly unprocessed foods you probably eat somewhere in the neighborhood of 2000-2500mg of sodium a day. So having a day that is 4000 will 100% affect your weight. So keep that in mind.

  1. Blame it on the alc-aah-aah-cohol

This is a very common scenario, even if you are drinking the new hard seltzer that appears to be taking over the planet. Sure they are better but how much better? A lot actually so one is likely not going to be an issue but if you are looking to get a good buzz going WATCH OUT. 

Nothing can sabotage your weight quite the way alcohol can and the worst part of alcohol consumption is that people often do not eat a regular meal before consuming. So let’s say you are at a bar with appetizers and you start to get hungry what do you think you are going to eat, a kale salad?

Nope, you might find yourself eating half of a crave case and then when you finally have the will to weigh yourself the wheels come off or you do something super extreme that often makes things worse.

Ok, let’s talk about some strategies that can help but the first thing you need to understand and this is VERY important. 


Weight loss should be in cycles. In fact……

If you are always trying to MAINTAIN your weight you are doing it wrong. 

Remember what we talked about earlier, a good sign of a healthy metabolism will see your weight fluctuating a bit staying mostly in a window you are comfortable with.

Strategy #1 

Eat low carbish. This doesn’t mean eat low carb and avoid dessert but if you have dessert just have a reasonable portion. 

Why low carb? Because low carb allows you to eat more sodium and fat without a lot of weight gain. It’s also much easier to manage your calories this way. 

Does this mean having a 24 ounce ribeye is a good option? Probably not. Fat will store as fat even without the presence of insulin from carbohydrates so just be mindful and eat a reasonable portion and if you have ice cream for dessert just ask for a kid size or a mini. 

(this is also a good modeling for your kids when they don’t have the metabolism of a raging inferno)

Strategy #2 

Use that energy. Within Eat To Perform our highest calorie days are called Super Days. Most people think they should have their biggest workouts on those days.


It takes up to 24 hours for your food to process and become usable so schedule a good noon or late day workout the following day and you should be fine. Also don’t try and BURN the calories off, USE THEM! So more pump style training is better and save the cardio for the next few days I am about to mention.

Strategy #3

Mix in more salads.

People don’t gain weight tracking their food and weighing themselves. Not in any major way at least. It happens when they aren’t conscious of those things.

Mixing in a few more salads in the days going forward will allow you to eat more flexibly.

Note this isn’t a weight loss strategy, it’s a weight management strategy.

The point of this article is to help you establish better habits. If you want to lose weight and keep it off maybe consider our free trial or our meal plan bonus package. 

Either way I hope this helps you the next time your family wants to enjoy a night away and it might save you some kitchen time as well.