How to Stay Bulletproof at Restaurants
By: Dave Asprey
October 5, 2012
For many, having an active social life includes going out to eat. If you eat the Standard American Diet when out, it may be time for a change. If you live in a city whose restaurants regularly accommodate patrons, consider yourself lucky. If you don’t, you may have some uncertainty about the quality of your meals with the wide variety of restaurants.
Cost benefit analysis time: is sinking future performance worth a good time with friends?
My answer is “No.”
Your answer depends on your goals. Eating out doesn’t have to mean downgrading, however temporary.
Bulletproofing Your Restaurant Meals
The first trick to staying safe at most restaurants is eating satiating Bulletproof foods before hand, skipping less than ideal, though sometimes very tasty restaurant foods. If your friends ask, you’re not hungry but enjoy their company. If you really want to eat with them, eat some steamed veggies or a salad sans dressing.
The second option is to ask, ideally before you get there. Ask for a gluten-free menu. Ask how the food is prepared; it may be that regular butter for sautéed veggies is an option. Ask if they do substitutions. Be informed about what you are eating so that you can make the best choices. You decide if it is worth it to you. Although be aware that if you’re already hungry, stressed or your dopamine system has been activated already, you may not be able to make the healthiest decision in the moment. Bring some activated charcoal just in case you end up eating something you regret.
If you are choosing the place, try a clean Sushi Restaurant. If the place smells overly fishy, or moldy, don’t eat there. Skip the sauces, imitation crab, the tempura etc., and stick to nigiri, simple rolls or sashimi. A little white rice isn’t going to kill you. Keep in mind that many American seaweed salads contain soy, so skip the seaweed salad too. I pour Brain Octane Oil all over my sushi instead of soy sauce, then sprinkle pink Himalayan salt all over it. Check out these travel-friendly, leak-proof 3-oz bottles of Brain Octane for portability and ease of use.
You may even try adding grass-fed butter to your rolls. I often take about 25 chlorella tablets when I eat sushi, as it helps counteract mercury.
Eating breakfast? Most breakfast places will allow you to order a series of sides. As pictured above, I’ll eat 6 poached eggs with ½ an avocado (2 servings). I skip the gluten-free stuff because it is often loaded with performance robbing refined sugar, or worse. If they have bacon, or meat sides, ask if they know where it comes from and what oils, if any are used for cooking. Make an informed decision about what you eat.
Lunch and dinner may be a little more difficult depending on what part of the country you are in. Likely, you may be able to get poached eggs at any meal. Grass-fed burgers cooked in their own fat is another option, no bun and no cheese, of course. Be careful with grass-fed steak, ask what it is cooked in, request that your steak is free of any seasoning, and you may even want to ask if this started out as a whole steak or has any transglutaminase in it, unlikely with grass-fed, but better safe than sorry.
What about the booze?
Cocktails with coworkers. Celebratory champagne. A romantic drink by the fire. Many people are unwilling to totally give up alcohol. It makes sense; many cultures have social behavior and drinking tightly linked. While alcohol isn’t necessarily ideal for optimal performance, from a fun perspective, having a drink or two every now and then is relatively harmless, with a few precautions- activated charcoal and n-acetyl-cysteine are the basics, but if you want more there is an entire protocol.
Bulletproof Restaurant Kit
Here are the things I often bring with me to a restaurant, whether eating before hand or not:
- A small vial of sea salt, my current favorite is Pink Himalayan Salt
- An adorable, travel-friendly bottle of Brain Octane
- Activated Charcoal
What are some of your tips and tricks for staying Bulletproof at a restaurant? What do you like to take with you to a restaurant?