Pros and Cons of Eating Out Regularly

13October 2020

What are the Pros and Cons of Eating Out Regularly? – Food is one thing that underpins what many people do across the globe. It’s extreme for sure, but some people will fly long distances, among other things,  to enjoy a great meal.

Eating well is high on our list of priorities and is often more important than most other things we do. After all, we can’t avoid food.

This article explores the various reasons we hold that determine whether we eat indoors or eat out instead.  

If you are an ordinary working-class family, you probably visit restaurants around three to four times a month, spending I estimate around £1800-£2,500 annually. Those numbers will be high for some while, for others, quite conservative.

High numbers will generally be affected by your drinking habits. More so, if you’re in a job role or circle of friends, with higher social expectations. Sometimes your circle of friends will demand it.

Does Not Eating Out Mean Missing Out?

If you don’t dine out frequently, er, how do I say it? You’re missing out! Let me adjust that. You could be missing out. 

That’s because there are so many cultures sharing their food with the world, especially in Wembley (because of its rich diversity, culture and customs), that missing out would be a travesty. There is so much readily available to experience that missing out seems unnecessary. 

But why miss out on the opportunity to immerse yourself in the various foods around your area? If you can afford it, leaving aside the dangers of allergies when eating out, there’s no real reason.

To deliberately miss out seems harsh. One might wonder if you’re punishing yourself. And those you would take along.

Some people argue that dining out often means that you lose the sense of the experience of it being a treat. Maybe that’s true for some people. However, there are plenty of advantages to eating out—more on this below.

I think you deserve it but read on.

Pros of Eating Out Regularly

Here are eight reasons why eating out might make sense for you in no particular order.

01- You Save Money By Staying In

With so many restaurants in Wembley, the chances are high that you have yet to visit every eating place in your area. Alright, you may not be trying to do that, but I bet that there are many food gems you walk or drive past almost every day.

Cooking at home is good. It has its advantages. By cooking at home, you save money. You teach your offspring how to carry on the family traditions and learn your customs.

They discover for themselves all about food ingredients, textures, what to do or not to do, and much more.

02- Eating Out Broadens Your Culinary Horizons

Yet eating out, especially in Wembley, presents the opportunity for authentic experiences that you can’t replicate in the comfort of your kitchen. Experts in one kind of cuisine tend to go out to experience others. 

Nothing can genuinely substitute the ambience of recreated Italian villas or Spanish belly dancing in themed restaurants. The atmosphere is not the most crucial factor in a restaurant; that would be the food!

03- We Need A Regular Break From Routine

In today’s busy society, we hardly have any time to sit down and relax.

Faster food, faster Internet- the constant juggle of home life, of work-life, of life in the community, the strain of driving or travelling on public transport-life, having high-demands on your time and attention, experiencing the noise of life, the turbulence of life, dealing with bills and expenses, demands from children, friends and family.

Sometimes, you need it gone, temporarily. And that’s why we take holidays; to get away from everything, thus changing what we think.

So when was the last time that you relaxed? Maybe now is the time to relax with your friends, family, significant other, or just yourself.

Put your phone on silent mode, and give yourself a chance to unwind. 

Could you do it? Pick from a few new restaurants, enjoy some good food, hopefully, good music, good conversation, including the waiters, and take a break from your regular everyday routine.

What can you do to relax your mind? That is another kind of relaxation that is equally important but often disregarded. Eating out helps as you can push everything to the back of your mind.

You can then focus on enjoying the current moment. Not the past, not tomorrow but now.

04- Helps Satisfy Our Natural Tendencies

As human beings, we have natural tendencies. Eating out is one of them. Indeed, since the ’60s and since eating out has become like entertainment. It gets us out of our homes. It reminds us that we are human. It shows us we belong.

Outside of our homes, outside of Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, we even meet new people. Real-life is outside your digital device, far away from Netflix and Prime Video. All with other people. 

By eating out, you pay for the privilege of having someone else serve you. You pay for having no washing up, no clearing up, no tidying up afterwards.

With your children in tow, they learn how to conduct themselves and how to behave in future when you’re not around.

In no time, they will be attempting to become independent of you, which, as you know, is essential.

05- Milestones Are For Celebrating, Aren’t They?

Milestones come faster than you realise.

Typical celebration milestones are

    1. Getting engaged,
    2. Getting married,
    3. Having your first offspring,
    4. Christenings (if that is your tradition),
    5. Confirmations (similarly),
    6. On the first day at school,
    7. Successfully passing one or more tests,
    8. Getting a university place,
    9. Obtaining your degree,
    10. Landing your first job,
    11. Gaining a promotion,
    12. Becoming a grand-parent, etc.

And these are just your milestones. 

And each milestone provides an opportunity to celebrate. They don’t all require you to eat out, but they each demand some celebration. Our lives, primarily long, are concise but ask yourself – what is the point of a milestone getting accomplished? 

The main point is that it provides opportunities for you to create memories. It’s an experience to talk about, remember and pass on to your offspring. These opportunities give meaning to life.

And then there are the festivals that mark the start or end of the seasons like Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Easter, Eid and Diwali, as are now so common in Wembley. They, too, are all about celebration and should ideally not be missed. These milestones also give meaning to our existence.

I know. If you’re a bit like me, you’re probably somewhat sceptical of the money spending/money-making days that crop up with an unerring frequency that mark Christmas and New Year.

But they provide a means of moving money around and keeping the economy moving. It is necessary for all our sakes. We need those businesses as they need us.

Our leaders tell us to go out and spend. And indeed, holding onto your money means reducing cash in the system. This reduction, in turn, leads to a shortage of money to do the everyday things that need doing. That much is evident during this pandemic. 

06- You Can Afford It, Here’s Why!

Going to a restaurant can save you a lot of time and effort while rejuvenating yourself. You may think eating out will add unnecessary expenses, but you don’t have to sacrifice quality to get a reasonable price at restaurants.

Do a bit of research about hot spots in your area, and you will find all sorts of deals you didn’t know existed!

For example, some chains offer inexpensive children’s dinners on certain days of the week, two-for-one specials during certain hours, and even free children’s meals throughout the month.

Consider what you would be purchasing at a fast-food place. For a small price difference, you will be able to sit down, enjoy your meal, and feel good about the healthier choice you made.

07- You Can Save Money While Eating Out, Here’s How!

Many excellent eating-out chains make it easy for you to save money with them while giving you a great experience.

For example, many chains create offers that are available to you online. Your search for the offers, and then you get them on your phone so that when you enter the restaurant, you let the restaurant know that you intend to pay by voucher.

Some eating places offer 50% off two courses for £10. Now unsurprisingly, these offers are only relevant at specific times. They get designed to attract you during their quietest periods. 

Shops prefer to receive 50% of something rather than 100% of nothing.

For example, the offer above might only be relevant on Mondays to Thursdays. While on Fridays to Sundays, the discount offer might be Enjoy 2 courses for £16 or 3 Courses for £19.

These offers are totally at the discretion of the company. So, if you’re planning an evening out in Wembley, for example, the discount vouchers might not be applicable on Event Days and other busy holidays.

Maybe Christmas, Chinese New Year, New Year, and Valentine’s Day are also milestones to remember.

08- Life is Short, Really Short!

Another reason: Life is a brief affair. No matter how long you live, life is still short!

The recent pandemic, still ongoing, shows that now matters. In short order, friends died prematurely. No one knows for sure about tomorrow, and unless the action of eating out will have a severe effect on your health, or your pocket, to the extent that you genuinely cannot afford it, then you should aim hard for the experience over not doing it.

It’s the experience that counts, not the thought of the experience.

Have I convinced you? You have all the pros; now, can you think of any cons? 

Nope! I didn’t think so!

But is that all there is? Of course not. There is more! 

As before, in no particular order, here are seven reasons why eating out might make sense for you.

Cons of Eating Out Regularly

So what are some of the advantages of eating out regularly? There are plenty of people who believe that eating out is not something great to do. 

Here’s their perspective.

01- Eating Out Is Too Expensive!

The most apparent reason against eating out is that eating out is expensive. 

Here’s why it’s not!

But first off, note that the meaning of the word expensive is subjective. The term “expensive” (costly) means different things to different people. And this begs the following question – do people who find eating out expensive eat out? Perhaps only occasionally, because they find it expensive. 

Surely then, those who eat out regularly don’t see it as expensive; otherwise, they would not. Or maybe those that do eat out regularly see benefits that render the expense acceptable.

I mean, just like a high-earner sees the benefit in hiring a cleaner to do the mundane because time is money, and cleaning is not the best use of their time.

So, if I were to ask the question again, “Is eating out expensive?”. The answer for those who agree would always be that it is. And those who eat out regularly would agree that it is not.

What gets considered a reasonable price for one person might seem expensive for another.

Also, restaurants operate on a spectrum with prices ranging from low to high. This situation means there will ALWAYS be an eating place with reasonable prices to match your budget. So, after all, eating out is not expensive; it depends on you.

02- I Want To Be Able To Relax

Another reason mooted for eating in the comfort of your home over eating out is that you cannot relax at the restaurant in the same way as at home. That’s true unless you own the restaurant.

But yes, it is a mistake to treat external eating places like your home. 

Do we want to do, when eating out, those things we would typically do at home? Really? I think not.

Eating at home is better if you plan to drink heavily or you want to get up and dance around (even though you probably could in some restaurants!) or want to avoid travelling or driving afterwards.  

03- I Can’t Help Myself, I Always Overeat When I Eat Out

Overeating is sometimes put forward as another reason for not eating out. The implication is that you’ll get more enormous helpings and that you have no control over proceedings. 

But as a living intelligent human being, surely overcoming any issue with overeating is not insurmountable. 

How much effort does it take to ask your waiter about portion sizes and order accordingly? And besides, do the majority of us wait until we eat out to overeat.

Do those with a tendency to overeat avoid overeating when at home? 

If you happen to find yourself surprised by the size of your portion because you forgot to ask, you could eat part of your meal and take the rest away. Almost every modern eating place will cater for this. After all, you have paid for it. 

So, as I see it, any problem you may have with overeating is hardly impossible to handle.

04- The Lure Of Eating Out Will Soon Wear Off 

Another excuse against eating out is that the novelty of eating out will soon wear off. The implication is that because it might wear off, you should hold back from experiencing out of your home what is one of life’s greatest pleasures – eating.

No one can stop novelty from wearing off.

There are so many available different dishes and cuisines from which you can choose, that I don’t find this novelty excuse to be a powerful one.

05- Temptation, Temptation, Temptation Is Everywhere

You can’t control yourself, can you when faced with all those temptations. This inability to stay in control is yet another excuse for remaining at home instead of eating out. I don’t know about everyone, but I tend to eat less food the following day if I eat out one day.

We all know about cause and effect. We understand that indulging once in a while has no long-term impact. It is only by consistently overeating that temptation becomes a problem.

We are all much wiser now than 20 years ago. Do people still struggle with temptation?

06- But I Don’t Know What’s In The Food!

Not knowing what’s in the food because you didn’t prepare it yourself is another excuse for not eating out. It’s true – you can’t see, and you can’t know unless you become a bore and ask every time.

The implication, therefore, is that eating out is inherently unhealthy because of the richness and saltiness of your meals’ ingredients. 

Not every meal I have when out is a special meal. Most meals out that I eat ensure that I get value for money while being satisfied. And my satisfaction extends to how healthy my meal is.

I have a simple rule. Keep all meals simple. The meals are not bland, but they are usually devoid of richness but have plenty of tastes—for example, a small portion of rice, lamb kebab and salad.

Of course, it contains salt, but salt provides taste. 

If meat is not to your liking, you have even healthier choices available with vegetarian food.

07- I’m Not Sure How Hygienic the Food Is

For sure, hygiene is another critical factor when considering eating out. This aspect is none clearer than during this current pandemic in 2020. Eating places have long existed and assimilated into society.

Eating places get inspected regularly to address this specific risk. Local government inspections have to occur by law. Also, interestingly, establishments work hard to keep their hygiene up, and it is in their interest to do so.

After all, who wants to cause stomach or other health problems for their customers? 

When it comes to hygiene, restaurants that are experts in providing food to the public don’t usually last in the industry if they are in the habit of causing hygienic problems for their customers. 

The market in which eating places operate weeds out restaurants that have failed to adhere to the issues addressed by the issue of hygiene. Word gets out.

Places that continually defy the accepted hygiene laws don’t tend to stay around for long.

Pros and Cons of Eating Out Regularly – Finally

No one is helpless when it comes to eating out or staying in and eating. We all exist along a spectrum called life.

Recognise that there is an X-factor in the everyday mix of experience.

And that X-factor is you. It’s the choices you make based on what you know to be good for your welfare. An excellent long-term strategy you can and should be adopting is to always put your health first at all times. 

And with that strategy in mind, one tactic might be to eat out occasionally and always choose food with which you are comfortable. That might seem obvious, but apparently, it is not. 

Whether or not you eat out now, today, or this evening (tactic) should remain within the context of that strategy. 

Today, there is absolutely no reason why, whenever you eat out, it should not be on your terms. It’s your life, so live it and exercise your choices.

Vote with your feet or your wallet if you are not satisfied. 

Remember that restaurants prefer happy customers, and so many will bend over backwards, so to speak, to satisfy their customers. So, don’t be too brittle or too hard on restaurants while eating out.

Appreciate that while you are indeed a factor in their thinking on any given day, they are juggling many different aspects of which you will be unaware. 

When seated in any restaurant, use the same common-sense strategies you would typically use when choosing the food to prepare at home for yourself and your family. Then place your order appropriately.

So, go forward. Life is for living. How you live it, it’s all up to you. 

If you have a view, please leave them in the comments below.

Don McDonald

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