Restaurant Nutritional Facts

Image copyright Carly Jane1.

We all want to find ways to save money and to get the best “bang for your buck”.  When you are working on a healthy eating lifestyle you need to be cautious.  I was watching a McDonalds commercial the other day and because we are in the Lenten season, the commercial was offering 2 fish sandwiches for $4.00.  Well I would pass on eating even one of the fish sandwiches due to the fat and calories but having 2 would not be a good thing!

Unfortunately, it can cost a little more to eat healthier.  I recently went into a restaurant where they were offering a couple of specials one was a chicken dish and the other fish.    Both of them were fried and when I asked if I could get it just baked or broiled, I was told that the special was just on the fried meals.  I do have a problem with that but short of contacting the company and making a complaint, I just ordered the healthier version and paid a little more for it.

Have you been to one of the restaurants were you can get 2 meals for 20.00?  Or you get an appetizer, entree and a dessert for a certain amount.  Once again, they are great deals but most of them do not include a healthy option.  I wish that restaurants would offer more desserts and appetizers that are healthy.  There really is such a thing!  Just think about the amount of fat and calories involved in that one special.  Appetizers are so high in calories and fat.  Now normally you would share but even part of the serving is a lot.  For instance at Applebees the Boneless Buffalo Wings with Blue Cheese Dressing is 1724 calories and 132 grams of fat!  That is just your starter!  Once again, I try to limit my fat intact to about 20 grams a day.  If I ate the plate of wings, I would be using nearly a week’s worth of fat grams.  Now to move on to the entree. Staying with Applebees…their Fiesta Lime Chicken and Rice without the Tortilla chips is 855 calories and 26 grams of fat.  This is actually a meal that I have eaten thinking it was a good choice.  Well it is better than many of the others but I was surprised to learn how many calories was in it.  A family favorite at Applebees is the Crispy Orange Chicken Bowl with Rice and Steamed Vegetables.  Doesn’t sound too bad right? 1520 calories and 52 grams of fat!  Now for the desserts… how about the Triple Chocolate Meltdown, that seems to be the one that is always pushed by the server.   Well that has 840 calories with 48 grams of fat!  So lets see what a meal would be if you were to get the 2 for 20 or 3 for something.  The appetizer with the Fiesta Lime Chicken would be 2579 calories and 158 grams  of fat!  Now add the dessert to that…3419 calories and 206 grams of fat! Remember…this is just one meal of the day!  Now this is not just Applebees many restaurants are the same.  You have to choose wisely.  One good thing with Applebees is that they do offer the under 500 calories meals.

The average family goes out to eat 3 times a week.  So if you choose these restaurants to save money, you could be hurting yourself and you family.  It may cost a little more for a meal that is healthier but you will be much better off and feel so much better.

The next time you head out to a restaurant keep some of these facts in mind.  Making healthier choices is the most important thing. Being aware of what you are putting into your body can help you make those healthier choices.


Kathy has been posting with us every Wednesday and sharing her story and ideas for weight loss and a healthy life. Miss any of the previous posts?

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