Our need for speed
Sure we all know how bad fast food is for our diets. Yet, somehow our car steers itself right up to the drive-thru window. Whether it is the tempting smell, the low cost, or the speediness that attracts you, you are there (perhaps more often than you would like to admit!). What can you do to ease the damage? Here are a few helpful tips;
Avoid the tempting deluxe or super-sized menu options. Ask yourself this; Is the thirty cents that you are saving really worth the extra damage you are doing to your body?
Be aware of condiments and dressings. One packet of mayonnaise (1 tbsp.) adds 60 calories and 5 grams of fat! A 1-1/2 ounce packet of regular salad dressing contains about 185 calories and 17 grams of fat. Ask for low dressings and condiments if available. If not, order the dressing on the side and only use a small amount. Try ketchup, mustard, lettuce, tomato, or onions on your burger or sandwich. They all make great toppings!
Stay away from deep fried foods. Even if the restaurant advertises 100% cholesterol free oil, it is still 100% fat and much of it is dangerous trans-fat, which raises LDL cholesterol!
Balance the higher fat items with low fat ones. For example, if you order a hamburger, choose a garden salad to go with it rather than French fries. Better yet, choose a grilled chicken sandwich without the sauce instead of the hamburger!
Split your order! Halve the calories and fat by sharing your meal with a friend.
The worst of the worst? Some of the worst health choices you can make include the Double Whopper with Cheese, French fries, Old fashioned Ice Cream Shake, hash browns, and Value meals (all from Burger King!). In fact, the Burger King Double Whopper Value Meal packs up to 2,100 calories (a day’s worth!) in one meal.
Though the majority of the foods on fast food menus are not healthy, there are a few options that make the grade:
Wendy’s Mandarin Chicken Salad- mixed greens, chicken breast, roasted almonds, mandarin orange segments, and a half a packet of oriental sesame dressing. This will give you 420 calories and a feeling that you just ate at a downtown bistro. For less calories, decrease or eliminate the dressing and the almonds.
Burger King Chicken Whopper Jr.- This actually tastes like it is grilled. The Junior version of the sandwich will provide 350 calories. By comparison, the regular sized Chicken Whopper has a whopping 580 calories.
Subway’s Low Fat Subs- Honey Mustard Ham, Sweet onion chicken teriyaki, and red wine vinaigrette club. These range from 310-370 calories and are delicious.
McDonald’s Fruit and Yogurt Parfait- Berries layered between low-fat yogurt and topped with crunchy granola all for 380 calories. Skip the granola and it is 280 calories.
Burger King BK Veggie Burger- Finally a fast food restaurant with a meatless sandwich. It has less than 2 grams of saturated fat and fewer calories (330 total) than any hamburger at any chain.
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