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fast food



5 Go-To Fitter Fast Food Menu Items

Eating out as a vegetarian who says no to dairy (most of the time) is a challenge. That’s why I don’t do it often. But fast food can be a necessary evil on a busy day of errands, if I forget my lunch, or if I’m traveling. While chain restaurants are being required to post calories, calories don’t provide the whole story. Lower calorie options can be loaded with sugar and lack protein, leaving you unsatisfied and headed toward a blood sugar crash.

Eating healthy on the go means being prepared and doing your research. It helps to have a go-to list of preselected options so you can grab and go. Try these fast food finds to make eating on the go a little healthier.

veggie skillet

Denny’s Fit Fare menu: At IDEA Personal Trainer Institute West, I had the privilege of having breakfast with Kymberly and Alexandra from FunandFit.org. When Denny’s, which was across the street from our hotel, was suggested I was skeptical. I was pleasantly surprised however by their Fit Fare menu. Since they serve breakfast all day, try the Veggie Skillet. With egg whites, broccoli, spinach, mushrooms and potatoes it has 20 grams of protein and only 330 calories. While it may not be as fast they do offer take out service.
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Chipotle is Going GMO-Free Because “People Have the Right to Know What’s in Their Food”

Food costs at a restaurant are the most critical to the business’ bottom line. That’s why many restaurants cut corners and you’ll often find their kitchens piled high with nameless, low-quality ingredients to ensure they can mass produce meals at a value while still turning a profit. That’s not how it works at Chipotle though, where they say it’s “worth it to spend a little bit more.”

We spoke with Chris Arnold, PR director for Chipotle Mexican Grill, who told us Chipotle has some of the highest food costs in the restaurant industry. Even still, they are able to “invest more in quality food and still be very profitable.”

chipotle GMO

Chipotle just became the first American restaurant to work toward clearing its menu of all GMO foods, something that will equally drive food costs while improving quality. The company knows there will be cost implications, exactly how much at this time they can’t say, but it’s not uncharted territory for them. “Making decisions that result in higher food costs is nothing new to us,” said Arnold.

The brand was a supporter of Prop 37 last year, the California bill that aimed to require labeling of GMO ingredients on all foods sold in the U.S. It was then that the brand started to hold itself to the same standard it was asking of others. Arnold explained that their first move was purely disclosure, to let their customers know which foods had GMOs.

“We think people have the right to know what’s in their food,” said Arnold.
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Data on Facebook’s Fittest Cities Ranking Does Not Add Up

Facebook has released a colorful graph ranking the fittest cities in the country via their Facebook Stories app. Other categories in the infographic include official sounding titles like “Dancing City,” “Swimming City,” “Marathon City,” and “Yoga City.” The graphic contains some sweet clip art and most of the cities make sense; Austin is definitely full of Yogis, OKC just collectively lost one million pounds so they must be fit, and Portland is a utopia populated by trendy entrepreneurs so they’re on the list by default.

facebook fittest cities

In the release, Facebook’s Mandy Zibart said, “Ranking of the fittest cities is based on fitness-related mentions, check-ins and use of fitness apps over a period of three months in U.S. cities with at least 200,000 Facebook users.” We think it’s a lot of talk though. Some of the cities included in the graph must have been giving themselves too much credit when they shared their activities, as some of the data is contradictory with other, more fact-based studies.

Facebook claims that El Paso and San Antonio, TX are among the 10 fittest cities in America. Earlier this year, Men’s Health listed both of those cities among the fattest in the nation, citing obesity and lack of physical activity among the population, and the prevalence of fast food joints in the area.
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The Skinny on Menu Calories: Pros and Cons of Published Calorie Counts

For many healthy-minded consumers, calorie postings on menus and menu boards greatly impact their decision when making food selections. While grabbing food on the go, it’s useful to know how this item will fit into a person’s allotted daily calories. Even though it may not feel like overeating, before you know it, you’ve consumed over half of the recommended daily calories.

fast food

For instance, see the calories in typical menu items. Seeing and internalizing the number of calories allows us to realize that snacks and seemingly healthy foods may, in fact, not be so healthy at all.

  • Medium fries – 380 calories
  • Gourmet cupcake – 300-600 calories
  • Grilled chicken salad with dressing – 400 calories

Our country’s obesity epidemic is growing exponentially much like the waistbands of many Americans. Just twenty years ago, no states had obesity rates above 15 percent. Today, 38 states have obesity rates more than 25 percent and the U.S. national obesity rate is a record 37.5 percent. Americans are eating more of their food outside their homes, whether dining out, purchasing prepared food, or grabbing a vending machine treat.
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Richard Nikoley Lost 65 Pounds by Eating Like a Caveman

When Richard Nikoley decided to lose weight several years ago, he started by walking up to three miles a day and doing aerobic exercises, but instead of seeing a loss on the scale, he managed to gain 30 pounds. He had the fitness aspect of weight loss figured out but junk food and high fat choices were hampering his weight loss goals. Today, Rich has lost 65 pounds, all because he started eating, “real food.”

Before adopting his current eating style, which he describes as, “Similar to the Caveman or Paleo diet,” Richard noticed his refrigerator and pantry contained high fat and convenience foods. He admits to eating his fair share of pizza and giving in to the midnight munchies. Now, his diet is primarily made up of “meat, fish, fowl, vegetables, fruits and small portions of nuts.” Another upside to feeding his body delicious muscle-building food is being able to add weight lifting to his exercise regimen.
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