Sometimes eating fast food is unavoidable. Perhaps you are traveling, maybe you forgot your lunch, have no time to make something, or are trying to recover from the night before. Regardless of your reason fast food happens! What choices you make at these establishments ultimately decides how good or bad of a decision that is.
Below are three typical scenarios with options how you can beat the bulge next time you’re staring down the menu at a local chain restaurant.
Scenario 1: It is 7:30am you are on the way to work and starving! Perhaps it would have been a good idea to hide the wine bottle last night!
Solution: Don’t panic! We get it, greasy food is indefinitely calling your name. Below are a few saving graces to consider:
* McDonald’s Egg McMuffin (300 calories)
Why? Think protein. Egg is a wonderful source of protein and the yolk offers a good dose of choline that your body needs.
*Starbucks – Reduced Fat Turkey Bacon Sandwich (250 calories)
Why? With under 300 calories this one is waste friendly, filled with protein, and delicious! Not feeling eggs? Try one of the Greek Yogurt parfaits (honey and blueberry version is great!)
Scenario 2: It’s lunchtime and you are starved! Have been out running errands all day and are starting to get hangry!
Solution: Eat! Your glucose levels are spiking making your blood sugar and attitude go south. Eating something will set you back to feeling good again while giving you energy to proceed with the rest of your day.
*Chic-fil-A – Grilled chicken nuggets with honey mustard dipping sauce and a side salad (Under 300 calories)
Why? Just 8 grilled nuggets has 25 grams of protein for only 140 calories! Add in some leafy greens and a little bit of honey mustard and you have got yourself a tasty and filling meal.
*Subway – 6″ Turkey on Wheat (approx 300 calories)
Why? Load veggies on this sucker, add either light mayo or avocado and you have yourself a balanced meal! (carb, fat and proteins). Another good alternative for under 350 calories is the tuna salad salad. Tuna is a great low calorie high protein source to keep you feeling full longer.
Scenario 3: Uh Oh it’s dinner night with the girls! You are psyched to see your friends but know often girls night means over indulgence in everything!
Solution: It doesn’t have to be! Spending time with friends is the most important part. You can partake in healthy eating and still enjoy a night out. Alcohol is probably the worst offender but if you simply cannot go without it opt for 1 glass of red which is packed with antioxidants. Here are some options to go for on the menu 99% of the time:
*Look for a lean protein (think chicken or fish), veggies and a good carb like sweet potatoes or red boiled potatoes etc. Remember you can always ask your server to sub out something like fries for a boiled potato or the veggie of the day.
*Salad can be a good choice but not always. Mining through salad ingredients can be stressful. Although salad appear healthy most of the time all the extras piled on including the dressing can make salads a worse choice than just getting a burger! So just be aware of the toppings and go easy on the nuts/dried fruit, skip the cheese if possible, skip the tortilla strips or croutons, add an egg or avocado and ALWAYS ask for your dressing on the side.
*Piece together a few sides or appetizers. Add a side of veggies, and chicken skewers or shrimp cocktail. Just look for options involving a lean meat, veggies and a healthy fat in moderation like olive oil, grass fed butter, or avocado.
So there you have it! You can eat any meal out and still stay on track. Just choose wisely, remember to balance your plate (read: skip carb on carb on carb options) and carry on!
Have any other great eating out advice??? We’d love to hear about it. post in the comments in below.