Starting simple

Set the nutritional tone of dinner right off the bat with your choice of appetizer. You have two possible alternatives. The first is opting for a really rich, high-density food such as pâté de foie gras (literally: fat liver paste) and then coast downward, calorie-fat-and-cholesterol-wise, for the rest of the meal. A second alternative is choosing a tasty but low-calorie, low-fat appetizer such as clear soup, a salad with lemon juice dressing, or shellfish such as shrimp cocktail (10 to 30 calories a shrimp) with no-fat (catsup/horseradish) sauce. This choice allows you more food later on.

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