Healthy Fast Food Choices

August 26th, 2011 · 1 Comment

Eating at fast food restaurants is quick, cheap, and convenient. If you can avoid eating fast food very often, you should, but with the busy lifestyles of today and a struggling economy it’s easy to forget to think about healthy eating and grab a quick burger and soda. You can find lists of calorie and fat content online for most restaurants, but this can be more work than many people are willing to do, when tempted by fast food. Common sense choices like making a nutritious meal at home may be the best way to avoid unhealthy meals, but if you are going to be eating fast food, there are some healthy choices available.

Restaurants like Subway advertise themselves as being a healthy alternative in the fast food world, but the truth is unless you make good decisions while ordering, sandwich shops can be just as bad for you as any other fast food establishment. A foot long sub is usually a bad choice, it’s more food than you need and when you add cheese and sauces like mayo or ranch dressing, you’re making it even less healthy. Instead try a six inch without cheese and mayo, more vegetables, and on whole grain bread.

When eating at a burger place, smaller portions are the key. A super sized burger meal with fries and a soda usually has around 1,700 calories, but a single patty burger, small fry, and water has closer to 500 calories. You could even try enjoying a veggie burger smothered in grilled onions and mushrooms. Or if you want a large beef burger, then skip the fries and soda and have a side salad and water instead.

When getting a fast food meal to take home for the family, chicken is often a popular choice. Fried chicken has as much trans fat as other fast food and is just as bad for your diet. Try grilled chicken instead, or take the skin off your chicken to make it a bit healthier. Small portions are a factor here as well. It’s a good practice, to stop eating before you feel full and wait to see if you really do need more food. Most fast food restaurants serve enough food for two or three meals disguised as a single serving.

It’s best to eat fast food rarely, but if it is a major part of your diet try using this common sense approach to help cut down on the negative effects a poor diet can have on your body. For more nutritional information check the websites of your favorite fast food restaurants. Healthy Living Rochester has more information on how to put nutrition in your diet.

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