Sometimes you actually can have your cake and eat it, too. In this case, we’re not literally talking about cake, of course. But you can do Atkins and still eat at your favorite spots—from the local diner to the fancy eatery with white tablecloths and a yard-long menu. You can even eat at most fast-food chains. (See Fast Food, Your Way.) And whether your tastes run to shish kebab or sashimi, Chicken Piccata or Chicken Tandoori, you can eat out with ease in almost any cuisine while complying with your low-carb lifestyle.
Nearly every cuisine has a staple food, such as potato, bread, rice, pasta, corn or beans. Though it may seem almost impossible to eat Italian cuisine, for example, without pasta, what really gives any cuisine its identity is certain seasonings and cooking methods. Those elements can be applied to a wide variety of protein sources and vegetables. By following the general guidelines in Eating Out Without Blowing It and the specific guidelines in our articles on dining out in Italian, Greek, French, Mexican,Middle Eastern, Indian, Chinese,Japanese, Thai and Korean restaurants, you’ll be able to avoid the sugars, starches and other empty carbs and focus on the foods that won’t take you off track.