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How to Spot, Beat Unhealthy Menus

Content courtesy of Allentown Morning Call

Here are three ways from Women's Health to help you avoid the tricks used to sucker you into ordering fattening (and pricey) food.

1. Healthy options next to the fattening ones.

You'd think this would help us eat better, but the opposite is true. A Duke University study found people are actually more likely to choose a higher-calorie dish when healthy fare is offered right beside it. Crazy as it sounds, just reading about a salad makes you feel like you've satisfied your nutrition goals and are free to go nuts and indulge.

2. Names such as 'German Black Forest Indulgence'.

Sounds better than plain ol' chocolate cake, doesn't it? Fancied-up monikers can boost food sales by up to 27 percent, according to industry research. Enticing descriptions create a positive emotion about how something will taste. That's why saying something is ''hand-battered'' or ''crispy'' can be a home run: It triggers a craving and draws your attention away from the harsh reality that the food is fried.

3. Lots of produce in plain sight.

The presence of veggies, even if they're carb-coated, deep-fried and cheese-slathered,convinces you that you're making the right food choices. Don't fall for it. A seemingly healthy addition to a less-than-wholesome dish sounds like a smart compromise. But in reality, these ''veggie'' delights can often be worse for you than notorious diet-killers such as pizza and hamburgers.

For more tips on outsmarting restaurant menus, go to

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