Healthy fast food options when you are in a hurry
It’s one of those hectic days where you don’t have time to stop at home and make your own lunch. You want something that will be ready in minutes and tastes good too! Fast food is an inexpensive and convenient option. You pull up to the drive-thru of a local fast food joint thinking -What can I order from the menu that I don't have to feel guilty about eating? Next time you are in a hurry try one of these health-conscious meal options.
Burger King Vegetarian Burger - This is one of Burger King’s secret menu items, and uses MorningStar Vegetarian patties in place of their popular Whopper beef patty. To keep your lunch healthy, load up on the veggies, hold the ketchup and mayo, stick with water or juice for a drink and order a garden side salad instead of fries.
Taco Bell “Fresco” Fiesta Burrito Chicken - Taco Bell has quite a few options if you are trying to cut calories and fat. They have a ‘Fresco’ menu that cuts out fattening sauces and condiments and replaces them with healthier options, and all of the items on this particular menu are 350 calories or under. You even have the option of taking any item from their entire menu and asking it to be made “Fresco Style”. When you ask for this, all of the unhealthy condiments on your taco or burrito will be replaced with pico de gallo also known as salsa fresca -- chopped onion, tomato, serrano chile, and lime juice. This lunch idea is delicious and filling.
McDonalds Grilled Chicken Sandwich (no sauce) or Premium Southwest Salad with grilled chicken - McDonalds Grilled chicken sandwich can be a great lunch option as long as you hold the mayonnaise, and substitute the fries and drink for a healthier alternative by choosing either apple slices, low-fat yogurt or a side salad. For a drink stick to juice or water. Their Premium Southwest salad topped with grilled chicken is another good option, which contains black beans, corn, tomatoes, peppers tortilla strips, and cheese. To make it healthier, order it without the tortilla strips and cheese and ask for low-fat Balsamic vinaigrette dressing.
Chick-Fil-A Grilled Chicken Cool Wrap - This wrap consists of grilled chicken breast, shredded cabbage, lettuce, cheese and an avocado lime dressing or dressing of your choice. Substitute the waffle fries for a fruit cup or side salad and choose water, juice or iced tea.
Wendy’s Baked potato with Broccoli and small chili - This combination is a good choice when you are watching calories as long as you ask for no sour cream or cheese. Plenty of protein and carbs to keep you full, this is a hearty and satisfying choice. Again try to avoid soda if you can, and stick with water or juice.
Panda Express Mushroom Chicken - The Mushroom Chicken entree contains chicken breast, zucchini, mushrooms and a ginger soy sauce, that you can pair with white steamed rice or brown steamed rice, in place of lo mein or fried rice. Skip the egg roll and peking ravioli and ask for extra veggies to cut back on calories, and order water for your drink.
These are some great ideas, however you need to be aware that most of these foods contain high amounts of sodium, so you need to be careful about your sodium intake for the rest of the day. Too much sodium over time can increase blood pressure and lead to further complications in the long term. It’s best to limit your fast food intake to once a month and prepare healthy, nutritious meals beforehand for lunch.