If you have vowed to eat healthy and consume a low calorie diet, then you must have stocked your refrigerator and pantry with low calorie food, fresh organic produce and lean cuts of meat. But what about those times when you are outside socializing with friends or are just looking for a shortcut to appease your 4’O clock hunger pangs. Whether you are plain bored and are looking for something to munch on or are having an office lunch, there are many opportunities for you to just forget your diet and grab a convenient but calorie rich fast food. The trick here is not to shun fast food altogether, but to have fast food that are healthy and has lower amount of calories, fats and sodium. Depriving yourself of any kind of fast food will not only make you crave for it more but it also puts undue pressure on you which itself can be unhealthy. Therefore, knowing which fast foods to choose is very important so that you do not end up eating a 1,100 calorie sandwich.
Tips on Choosing Low Calorie Fast Food
Choose the Right Salad
The term low calorie and fast food might seem like a misnomer, but there are ways in which you can lighten up your favorite fast food. Most office goers who are in need of a healthy lunch, choose a salad from a nearby fast food restaurant or diner. Although this makes them feel virtuous, for eating healthy greens, if you look closely, salads served at fast food restaurants and delis are packed with extra calories. Choose a salad that consists of fresh seasonal and organic greens with grilled chicken, extra virgin olive oil, flaked salmon and vegetables like tomatoes, cucumber, red and yellow pepper and carrots. Avoid heavy dressing like those made with cream and mayonnaise, and choose a simple vinaigrette instead. Also avoid the extras like crispy bacon, croutons, diced boiled eggs, cheddar cheese, blue cheese, Gorgonzola cheese and prosciutto.
Go Easy on the Salad Dressing
To cut calories, ask for the dressing on the side so that you can control how much dressing goes in the salad. Just because a salad dressing consists of extra virgin olive oil, do not assume that it gives you the liberty of eating as much as you like. Olive oil although healthy and nutritionally rich, has a lot of calories, so moderation should be exercised in its consumption. Also choose salads with grilled white meat like turkey and chicken instead of meat that has been batter fried or crumbed.
Keep a Eye on Portion Size
If you are going to eat a hamburger, then there is no reason to eat a double hamburger with all the extras like bacon, mayonnaise, cheese and guacamole. Skip the double patty hamburger for a single patty one and have it without mayonnaise, guacamole and cheese. Also avoid putting in too much of mustard and ketchup as they add to the number of calories in the burger. Choose a whole grain bun for the burger if possible instead of a plain one. You can also choose burger buns that contains sesame seeds and poppy seeds as they are rich in fiber and taste great too. Finally, skip the French fries as they contain a lot of empty calories and are mostly fried in hydrogenated oil.
Opt for Healthy Sandwiches
Sandwiches are one of the most popular fast foods in the world. Unfortunately, if you are not careful you can consume too many calories that is going to go straight to your hips. However opting for low-calorie fast food choices does not mean that you stop eating deli sandwiches altogether or eat a boring and flavorless sandwich. Opt for a grilled chicken or turkey sandwich instead of a beef and bacon sandwich.
Cut Back on Extras
Dressings in sandwiches can send the calories soaring, so opt for a honey and mustard dressing instead of creamy Ranch dressing. To make it more nutritious, choose multi grain or whole grain breads instead of white bread and ask for extra lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and olives in the sandwich. This way you remain satiated for longer and are not tempted to eat another sandwich. Also cut back on extras like cheese, mayonnaise, gherkins and crispy bacon.
Making low-calorie fast food choices is no doubt hard, particularly when can see so many tempting options. But once you start practicing it you won’t have trouble sticking to the low-calorie options. You also need to exercise portion control and skip drinking high calorie milkshakes and sodas if you are serious about eating low calorie food.