“Would you like an apple pie with that?” My teeth grit each time I hear it. And, I hear it often because
- I prefer fountain diet cokes at fast food restaurants instead of bottles or cans, and
- the cashiers at McDonald’s are required to say that with every order – or else…
McDonald’s isn’t alone. Suggestive selling is BIG at many restaurants. Servers suggest appetizers, specialty drinks, and, of course, decadent desserts. Many servers don’t just mention foods, they use tempting descriptive words that can make your mouth start to water.
Does it work? Of course! Books and articles galore promote “suggestive selling” to improve sales. But, if you’re fighting your weight
But, if you’re fighting your weight (and let’s face it, two-thirds of all Americans are currently overweight), there’s no need for you to fall victim to the trap.
If you enjoy dining out, but want to stay in control...
- Check the menu online and read the nutritional information.
- Decide what your ONE priority will be for that meal. Be honest with yourself - if you’re going to get the margarita or creamy chocolate dessert, select something light for the meal.
- Make a plan for what you want to order and stick with it.
- Stay in charge at the table. You’re paying for the meal, so don’t feel guilty about being assertive. Place that picture appetizer menu on an empty chair and ask them not to bring the dessert cart.
By Dr. Jo (Joanne Lichten, PhD, RD)
Stephanie Ronco has been editing for Food and Health Communications since 2011. She graduated from Colorado College magna cum laude with distinction in Comparative Literature. She was elected a member of Phi Beta Kappa in 2008.