Let's face it, most fast food is NOT good for you and most are loaded with calories, sodium, and fat. We all clearly understand that fast food, in general, is NOT as healthy as cooking at home, BUT for those in a hurry, on a road trip, need a quick fix, it is still attainable to not eat like garbage.
With a massive wave of people jumping onboard with healthier eating trend, our favorite chains have opted in to offering healthy fast food alternatives. From vegan to paleo, keto, and gluten-free, major chains have done their market research and are giving the people what they want. Sometimes it can be hard to distinguish between healthy food and foods high in sugar, sodium or calories masking themselves as healthy options. So who are the top fast food chains in terms of healthy eating options and what are the food items you should try to avoid at all costs?
The Holy Grail of fast food chains ranks in at #1. Chick-fil-a was the first in the industry to offer a completely trans fat free menu. They promise the use of real chicken with no added fillers or hormones, cage-free eggs, and fresh, simple ingredients.
What should you order?
Healthy Eating Tips: The beloved Chick-fil-a Sauce has whopping 140 calories! Next time, go for Buffalo, BBQ, Honey Mustard, or Sriracha sauce, which all have 45 calories or less, instead. Also, be careful with salad dressings: the Market Salad's Zesty Apple Cider Vinaigrette Dressing adds another 230 calories. We suggest substituting Light Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing (80 cal) or Light Italian Dressing (25 cal).
If you're like us, Wendy's doesn't necessarily come to mind when you think of healthy food options. However, Wendy's ample variety of chicken sandwiches, wraps, and salads give them a boost is the healthier direction. Here are four options to sway you away from getting a calorie-loaded Baconator:
Healthy Eating Tips: We wouldn't leave you hanging without addressing one of Wendy's most popular items: the Frosty! In moderation, sweet treats are perfectly acceptable. For instance, we recommend getting a Junior Vanilla Frosty. It's only 190 calories and it has 5g of protein!
Is it possible that the best of both healthy and greasy worlds can not just coexist, but also thrive under the same roof? According to Business Insider, Taco Bell has mastered this concept. They've "cut artificial ingredients and switch to cage-free eggs." Also, Taco Bell has rolled out a lower-calorie Fresco menu, the high-protein Power Menu, and a Vegetarian Menu certified by the American Vegetarian Association. Though they have created a ton of options, here's what you should get to maintain your healthy eating habits:
Chipotle can easily make it on the healthiest fast food list as well as the unhealthiest list depending on what you get. They offer menu items that are high in protein with fresh ingredients, but it's also very easy to get carried away and pile on the cheese, queso, and sour cream. Chipotle is a great option if you are a vegetarian or following the Keto diet. Burrito bowls and salad bowls are going to be more on the healthy end of the spectrum, but that doesn't mean you're in the all clear as long as you get a bowl. Here are some fan favorites for both flavor and healthy eating.
The next time you find yourself in need of a quick bite, stray away from the traditional unhealthy options and find peace in knowing that there are healthy fast food options that won't disrupt your diet. A lot of restaurants have accepted that their customers are more conscious and have started making the nutrition information more visible and transparent so you can easily go to your favorite restaurant and find something you enjoy eating and isn't too bad for you!