In the U.S. we eat about one-third of our food away from home – including both fast food and full service restaurants. A study published in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior found that you may be getting almost an entire day’s worth of calories in one sit-down restaurant meal.
The researchers looked at the nutritional value of meals at 21 full-service restaurant chains and found that, on average, a single meal (entrée, side and one-half appetizer) contains almost 1500 calories, 28 grams saturated fat and 3300 milligrams sodium. Add a shared dessert and a beverage and the calories jump to over 2000.
Eating this way regularly can lead to overweight and obesity – and increased risk for several cancers, including colorectal, post-menopausal breast and pancreatic cancer.
So if you enjoy eating and good health, it’s worth taking a little time to develop some basic strategies to do both. Here are some ways I approach eating out to keep restaurant meals healthier (and sometimes more economical):
Of course, it’s easier to do all this if you aren’t “starving” when you get to the restaurant. Sometimes it helps to have a piece of fruit before heading to the restaurant so you can make smart choices.
What do you do to make healthful restaurant choices?
Source: AICR Blog