No wonder America has a weight problem

Published Jul 23, 2014 at 5:48 am (Updated Jul 18, 2014 at 3:27 pm)

A chicken burrito bowl at Chipotle, with brown rice, pinto beans, grilled fajita vegetables, salsa, sour cream and cheese packs a staggering 750 calories and 32.5 grams of fat – nearly half of the recommended intake. Want guacamole on that? Now you are talking 950 calories and 51.5 grams of fat.

Order the #6 Vegetarian eight-inch sub as it is on the menu at Jimmy John’s – provolone cheese, avocado spread, cucumber, lettuce, tomato and mayonnaise – and you’ve got yourself 690 calories and 39 grams of fat.

Truth be told, these seemingly healthy choices are not far off, calorie and fat-wise, than a quarter pounder with cheese and a medium fry at McDonald’s – 1,030 calories and 50 grams of fat.

Sadly, most people probably think that they are making wise decisions on food while eating out when they actually aren’t. Combine that with dishes that go above and beyond the recommended daily calorie and fat count of roughly 2,000 calories and 65 grams of fat – the 4-Cheese Mac & Cheese with Honey Pepper Chicken Tenders at Applebee’s, for example, contains 1,830 calories and 92 grams of fat – and it’s no wonder that our country has a serious weight problem.

While some restaurants and food establishments have done a great job displaying their nutritional information – Panera Bread’s information is displayed right on the menu – others, unfortunately, have not. A provision of the Affordable Healthcare Act is that chain restaurants with more than 20 locations must list calorie content on standard menu items on the menu itself. Additional information would be available upon request. Many others only put the information on their websites – which is great if you think to look before you dine.

So where does that leave us when it comes to our favorite restaurants that are locally owned and operated? Most likely, in the dark.

Sure, people need to take responsibility and make good choices, but restaurants shouldn’t offer dishes that are so off the charts in terms of their nutritional content.

So think twice before you order the Strawberry Fields Salad with grilled balsamic chicken at TGI Friday’s – lest you want to consume 820 calories and 59 grams of fat in a single, salad sitting.

comments powered by Disqus