Finding Fast Food Alternatives

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Eating fast food? Make healthier drive-thru menu choices and get fit not fat!

If you are alive and have a pulse in the 21st Century, chances are you have spent a good deal of time in fast-food restaurant drive-thrus. You pull up to the gigantic menu with its reasonable prices and unreasonable calorie counts. The faceless intercom is staring at you, waiting for your order. You are hungry, the kids are hungry, and even the dog is slobbering in anticipation. You feel the pressure to decide quickly, so you default to the familiar fatty fries and pound-producing pop.

Caving into Carl's Junior doesn't have to put you in a diabetic coma. Educate yourself a little, and you'll have a lot of healthier alternatives. For instance, McDonald's Big Mac has about 540 calories, but the grilled chicken ranch Snack Wrap only has about 200 calories. Order a small fry for another 200 calories, skip the soda and get some water, and you have just consumed a reasonable 400-calorie meal. Similarly, the Burger King Whopper with all the fixings has about 800 calories. Cut that down to around 300 calories by getting the Whopper Jr. minus the mayo. If you miss that white goop, you can find flavor in extra pickles or ketchup.

Subway and Baha Fresh are fast-food chains with an overall healthier menu. Their ingredients are close to the earth and fresh, and you can see what's going to end up in your mouth. Baha fresh makes a mean black-bean-and-cheese burrito full of perfect proteins. Make your Subway sandwich even more stellar by asking for spinach instead of lettuce; request more olives for healthy omega fats; get extra tomatoes for layers of lycopeine which benefits the prostate.

If the kids are begging for a burger, then consider Burgerville's vegetarian options and sweet potato fries. Wendy's offers mandarin oranges, salads or baked potatoes in place of fries, and McDonald's offers chocolate milk in place of soda, or apple slices instead of fries.

Next time you are in a rush to refuel, take an extra five seconds to assess your alternatives. Don't do your default. Is there a healthier drive-thru nearby? Can you skip the fries and get fruit? How about a frozen yogurt instead of ice cream? Your options are indeed endless, so take advantage of them!


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