Fast Food

Wellness Wednesday: Fast Food

I'm sure you may have an idea where I am going with this one. Many of us are leading busy lives and sometimes we need a quick meal on the go. Swinging through the drive-through can be an easy way to grab a bite to eat. But, at what cost? 


According to the Food Institute’s analysis of data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, millennials alone spend 45 percent of their budget’s food dollars on eating out. Today the average family is spending half their food budget on eating out compared to 30 years ago when that was only about 38%.


The Good News: More and more, there are a lot of great choices opening up for eating out. Even common fast food establishments are offering healthier options. With other places dedicating themselves to a full healthy menu with locally sourced ingredients. 


The Bad News: Some areas do not have these better options and even with better options, the temptations of grabbing an unhealthy meal are pretty high. 


So what are some of the negative things associated with most fast food?


Fast food will typically be carb-heavy, high in sodium, filled with preservatives and fillers, higher in sugar, fried in unhealthy oils, and often more food than you need. This can lead to a number of health issues over time. Here are just a few.

  1. Headaches

  2. Depression

  3. Acne

  4. Dental Issues

  5. Weight Gain

  6. Blood Sugar Spikes

  7. Bloating 

  8. Insulin Resistance 


Tips for eating on the go: 

So, how do we overcome these temptations and get to better options? I have compiled a few tips for eating cleaner when you are out and about. 

  1. Plan Ahead: This one may be a little more work on the front end but it is well worth the effort in the long run. Take the time to plan your outings with healthy foods you take with you. Try making a little extra dinner the night before and packing it up the next day or grab some healthy snacks to take with you. (When me and my family go out for the day we will always pack up some good snacks to bring along.)

  2. Find Better Options: If you are not sure where to start with this one you may be able to find better options by searching for local reviews, asking local social media groups or even asking your health care provider. Many times I will call around and ask what type of oil they use for cooking or if they have various options that I am looking for. 

  3. Don't Let Advertising Tempt You!: Restaurants are all designed to sell more food and they often push the foods that have higher profit margins. These foods are not always the best options. But, they make them look so good. :) If you are going to order a healthier option but think you will get tempted by a worse one, try calling and ordering ahead to avoid the struggle. This will lock in your good choice. 


As you get in the groove you will find some options that work for you and your goals. Just remember that a little planning and preparation will go a long way to meeting your health goals. 


Hope this helps as you navigate a busy life and get good food on the go. 


Until next time! Make good choices and stay healthy! 😀