A few months ago, I wrote an article on Why Americans are Getting so Fat and mentioned that one of the major factors was due to the increasing high calories, larger portions, and fat quantity of the foods served in restaurants. American restaurants have been more focused on creating foods that taste good rather than being healthy.
Restaurants have even tried to combat the negative press and image associated with high fat diets by coming up with healthier alternatives. But are these alternatives really all that healthy?
Many of these “healthy alternatives” still contain an extremely large amount of calories and high quanities of fat and sugar. Keep in mind that the average person should only consume 2,500 calories per day. When it comes down to it sheer caloric impact is the primary cause of obesity. It makes sense. Excess calories are converted to fat, plain and simple.
So you go to your local Ruby Tuesdays and decide to eat healthy. You pick the Turkey Portobello burger rather than your typical Cheeseburger. Turkey burgers are healthy right? Guess Again… This turkey burger alone packs a whopping 1,145 calories and that’s not including the side of fries!
You would be better off ordering a Big Mac from McDonald’s which only packs 540 calories or even the Whopper from Burger King which is a high 760 calories.
The Turkey Bella from Ruby Tuesdays portobello contains 1,145 calories, 71 grams of fat, and a total of 56 grams of carbs. A much healthier alternative would be the 9-oz sirloin steak with a side of vegetables which would make a total of 256 calories.
McDonalds recently came out with their “ALL WHITEMEAT” Chicken Selects which appear healthier than your traditional Chicken McNuggets, however with the five piece alone they are 830 calories with 55 grams of fat (4.5 trans fat) and 48 grams of carbs. Add an order of regular fries and a soda and your looking at a 1,710 calorie meal!
The five piece Chicken Selects contains just about the same calorie content as the 20 piece Chicken McNuggets. An order of 6 piece Chicken Mcnuggets will save you 530 calories.
The Jamba Juice Chocolate Moo’d Power Smoothie packs a whopping 900 calories. In fact it contains more sugar than 2 pints of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. There is also 10 grams of fat which some may consider quite low, but also 183 grams of carbs of which 166 grams are sugar.
Looking at the menu at Jamba Juice it is clear that 80 percent of their drinks contain 100 grams of sugar or more. That’s equal to 3 cans of regular cola. I’d avoid this chain and go find yourself a protein shake.
The Macaroni Grill’s “Double Macaroni and Cheese” may seem like a mild alternative, however it packs 1,210 calories with 62 grams of fat and 3,450 mg of sodium. A much better alternative would be their 390 calorie grilled chicken with a side of vegetables.
This simple sandwich packs 1,490 calories, 85 grams of fat, 96 grams of carbs, and 4510 mg of sodium. A typical sandwich should only contain 500 calories max and that includes bread, cheese, and mayonaise. There are many alternatives at Subway which are under 500 calories or less.
Carl’s Jr. has their Six Dollar Burger which is suppose to represent a typical burger that you would get at a Bar & Grill for $6.00, it also represents 1,520 calories with 111 grams of fat. Wow!!! Where do they pack all that fat?!? I guess in the bread. The low carb version of this six dollar burger in a box without the bun, but still with all the other fixings is only 490 calories. My only question is how in the hell do they pack 1,030 calories in the bun?
We saw how the Macaroni Grill was able to pack 1210 calories and 62 grams of fat into their Macaroni & Cheese. So how does their Spaghetti & Meatballs measure up?
They do not disappoint. Their Spaghetti & Meatballs contain a total of 2,430 calories with 128 grams of fat and 207 grams of carbohydrates. This one simple dish can satisfy your calorie requirements for an entire day. This means that you could essentially live off of eating this dish once a day and nothing more. Just kidding.
The Awesome Blossom from Chilli’s. Can you possibly get any worse than this? These fried onions are like sponges for absorbing the cannola oil that they are cooked in. That with the tangy chipotle sauce and you have an artery busting combination. This one starter contains 2,710 calories with 203 grams of fat and 194 grams of carbs. If this is your appetizer than I would hate to see your main course!
Yes, it does get worse! Outback Steakhouse has their Aussie Cheese Fries which are covered in ground beef, chili, and cheese. They are 2,900 calories with 182 grams of fat and a total of 240 carbs. This is about as bad as it gets… they must have made this high calorie on purpose. How could this possibly be an accident?