Healthy Fast Food Options

>> Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Not sure if you've noticed, but there seems to be a proliferation of more "healthy" fast food options.

Just a short time ago, if you wanted to grab a REALLY quick lunch, your options were pretty much limited to the big three burger chains or maybe a local pizza joint that serves by the slice. Or maybe a little fried chicken.

Not exactly the most healthy of options.  Have you read Fast Food Nation?

Suddenly I've noticed a shift in the number of healthy yet still quick food options, and I am loving it. And not just in New York.

Salads, pastas, burrito bowls, hummus, even a "better burger". Not to mention the proliferation of frozen yogurt and smoothie establishments. Many of whom publicly post the nutritional content of their food, either in their store or on their website or both.

Like a salad from Salad Works that is "fanatic'ly fresh." Or the Hummus Masabacha from Hummus Place made almost entirely from chick peas. Or the Protein Berry Workout with Whey from Jamba Juice that delivers 21 grams of protein for 300 calories. Even a Burrito Bowl from Chipotle Mexican Grill that is described as "food with integrity."

Now the truth is that you still have to be careful at these places. Overall there are more healthy options when compared to a burger with special sauce, lettuce, cheese, on a sesame seed bun. Some of the options can still have incredibly high fat content, and even a fruit smoothie can weigh in at over 500 calories when fully loaded with granola and other add-ons. 

But if you're smart, you can choose from tons of more healthy options for a healthy and fast lunch. Like never before. Like the air baked fries at Better Burger NYC that promise to be guilt free.

You can turn lunch hour into wellness hour, particularly if you walk to and from, or at least take the stairs back at the office. Have some fun and try a new one every week.

Hope this finds you well -- Jim.


Melissa August 11, 2009 at 3:01 PM  

What a great posting! And yes, Jim, I’ve noticed the trend, and I applaud NYC for being a leader within the nation regarding legislation. A few years ago, city regulations were upheld requiring some chain restaurants to post calories on menus. This means that consumers can educate themselves at the decision making point. A few years ago, what was consumer's awareness level of, let's say, their favorite “pick-me-up snack,” which was a banana bread slice from Starbucks? Did they already know it was a heaping 390 calories? Or did that small signage under the glass window provide them with this awareness? Perhaps when information like this is disclosed, consumers will be empowered to make healthier choices and select lower calorie meals, especially within those populations that have limited access to healthier options and more access to the fast food chain restaurants. And if you want to take the leap, I’d say this will lead to lower incidence of obesity. Knowledge is power, so empower yourself and make smart healthier choices.

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