The United States of Fast Food

Photo Credit: Thrillist

Photo Credit: Thrillist

Despite being the leading cause of obesity in the United States, fast food remains a staple in the American diet. The greasy burgers, crispy french fries and mammoth chocolate milkshakes; the more unhealthy, the more of it we’ll eat.

Heck, Americans love fast food so much, we can probably name more fast food chains than justices on the Supreme Court.

I understand why we still gravitate toward these places; they’re cheap, quick and there’s a fast food joint on every street corner.

Thanks to chains like Chipotle, we can eat a lot healthier.

Here are some tips to avoid the pitfalls of eating at a fast food restaurant:

Avoid anything ‘fried’, ‘crispy’, ‘creamy’, ‘cheesy’ or ‘breaded’

Look for grilled items on the menu instead.

Less is more

The less processed ingredients involved with your meal, the better.

Water, water and more water

The sodas and other fountain drinks offered are awful bottomless pits of sugar…just stick to some good ol’ H2O.

Salads aren’t always healthy

You see a salad listed on the menu and automatically assume that it’s healthy, but 9 times out of 10, the kitchen sink of toppings and the dressing that come with it aren’t good at all. Read closely, and ask to ‘customize’ your order by removing those items (e.g. croutons, crispy chicken, bacon, cheese, ranch or other creamy dressings)

Here are some places with great ‘fast food’ options:

Whole Foods: Their salad bar and hot food options are great for meat eaters and non-meat eaters alike.

Chipotle: Everything is made to order, it’s fresh, relatively inexpensive and they have an ordering app so you can avoid the line!

Sweetgreen: Salads with ingredients grown locally and organic, there is zero post-meal guilt eating here. And they have online ordering too!

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