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Can I lose my baby weight with take-out food?
Q: I’m back at work after delivering my second child six months ago. I’m trying to lose pregnancy weight, but I don’t have the time or energy to prepare lunches from home. What’s the best way to maintain a healthy diet when relying on take-out food?

Basic guidelines to choose the healthiest alternatives when you eat out:

1. Choose grilled or baked food rather than fried options. Poultry or fish are healthier options than meat.

2. Drink low-fat milk or water instead of fruit juice or soda.

3. Look for freshly prepared foods. Salad is often a good bet, especially if you use dressing sparingly. Choose a baked potato or a fresh vegetable instead of French fries or chips.

4. Choose reasonable portions or be willing to divide your meal in two and save half for later. Don’t “super-size” portions or choose double-decker sandwiches.

5. Don’t load up on cheese, sour cream or other high-fat additions.

6. Instead of high-fat, high-calorie desserts choose a piece of fruit or a small portion of frozen yogurt or sorbet.

Don’t forget that exercise should be a part of any weight-loss plan. And, if you are still breastfeeding, avoid stringent dieting and continue to drink plenty of liquids.

Laura E. Stachel M.D. Obstetrician & Gynecologist