Fast Food Nutrition Guides

Written by Sky Taylor, Diet Bites

Knowing the caloric values of your meal plate before ordering can assist with weight loss.

A caveat regarding fast food nutrition guides. As a 'Diet Watchdog' we've made the rounds to all of the fast food eateries in our area and most do not have a nutrition guide readily available to their customers.

Nutrition Guides Helpful in Meal Planning When Dining Away From Home

Therefore, always ask your server for one if you do not see such - before you place your order. From there, base your meal plate on the healthiest selections and watch the caloric and dietary fat values.

If the restaurant doesn't have one, ask to speak with the manager. Very nicely tell them that as a patron, you'd like to see this service added. And while you have their attention, ask them to point out the nutrition-wise items on their menu for you.

Fat & Calories in Menu Selections

In addition, pay close attention to both the fat and caloric intake of these items. Calories ARE king, but fat is also a true concern in your diet. Eating five packages of filled sponge cake per day and nothing else might meet the bar, calorie-wise, but nutrition-wise, not. For example, Edna loves cupcakes - the chocolate ones filled with that delicious fluffy white stuff. One cupcake contains 200 calories. She is on a 1,400 calorie per day weight loss plan. But oh my, she does love her chocolate cupcakes. So rather than eating her scheduled meal plates, she opts for seven chocolate cupcakes throughout her day.

Will she still drop pounds? Yes. The body sees all food and drink as 'energy'; calories equal energy to the body. The trouble is, energy arrives to the body in different qualities. Just like the fuel that we insert into our vehicles, there are poor fuels, good fuels and premium fuels.

Unfortunately for Edna's good health, she has just consumed poor fuel. They body will use these poor energy calories chiefly for 'quick energy' needs. Foods that are mined with sugar are chiefly used in this manner by the body. The issue is that they quickly dispense and then the individual is left with a 'sugar low' - feeling a sudden drop in energy levels.

Think about all the foods that Edna could have enjoyed throughout her day, from that delicious bowl of whole oats to those loaded tacos. But not today - unless she doesn't want to lose weight.

We could have used many foods to example this situation - from seven cinnamon rolls with heavy icing to three wedges of dark chocolate cake which is heavily frosted. Or we could have used fast food. For example, most of the large cookies contain 150 to slightly over 200 calories a piece.

If Edna was a Cookie Connoisseur and the cookies she liked contained 200 calories each, then she could have enjoyed seven cookies rather than the cupcakes.

Frankly, she would do better to enjoy seven 200 calorie fast food chicken tacos; at least should would have received nutritional values in the form of protein from the chicken, lettuce and garlic and onions from the vegetable group, shredded cheese from the dairy group, grain group servings from the flour tortilla and fruit group benefits from the tomatoes.

Fast Food Advertising Versus Nutritional Values

The majority of the fast food advertisement are filled with empty hype.

They may cause the best of dieters to actually believe that a 1,450 calorie triple cheese, triple meat burger (hold the onions please) is actually healthy - but only for about five seconds or so. Because if you're reading Diet Bites, then you are indeed a very smart dieter.

For the most part, nutritional guides aren't posted to serve the customer's nutritional needs.

Logically looking at the situation, there are very few ultra-healthy food and drink selections on the menus of fast food and fine restaurants. The guides are more likely provided as a Public Nicety as well as to protect themselves from potential lawsuits.

People sue these days for everything and even try to set-up some restaurants for such by putting various body parts and other items into the foods. This type of unacceptable as well as criminal behavior can cost a restaurant heavily; although the culprit will get their due in jail - it's difficult to recover from the damage.

Simply put, the fast food industry as well as the fine-dining industry has an obligation to let the public know the nutritional values of the foods they serve. If many customers knew the amount of fat and calories they were ordering, they would amend their order to healthier menu selections.

And on the other end of the spectrum, many customers enter the restaurant for celebration purposes - and the amount of calories and fat contained in the food is of no consequence for their meal - but they do favor knowing these values so that they can adjust their diets for the next few days to accommodate the caloric overage of the meal.

'But it will reveal our secret sauce,' just doesn't cut the mustard anymore. Although there appears to be a growing number of people who are becoming overweight, we are a much more Diet-Conscious public than ever before.

So know before you go - about the nutritional values of the foods that you'll be eating. You can visit the links at the top of this Diet Article which feature some of the most popular fast food restaurants. We provide our top picks off the restaurant menus based on the caloric values of the menu selections, as well as health notes involving certain selections.


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