Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Slim Down the Fattening Fast Food

Don’t Let the Drive-Thru Detour Your Summer Slimdown Goal

“You may not be able to avoid fast food restaurants altogether. But remember, it’s up to you to choose what you eat when you’re there. No one is forcing you to eat those fries! You can stick to your health and weight goals—just make the smart choices. Even small changes like ordering the smaller size or getting water instead of soda can make a difference.”
—Kathy Kaehler, celebrity trainer and USANA spokesperson

In today's world, where time is precious and convenience is essential, the fast food meal is all too rapidly becoming the norm. As you strive to improve your eating habits and slim down for summer, it would be great if you could never set foot in another fast food restaurant. But that's unlikely, so make sure to choose healthier options when you do go.

* Skip the cheese, the mayo, and the bacon.
* Order sauces and salad dressings (get the light ones) on the side.
* Opt for smarter choices like grilled chicken, fish, or even a small hamburger. By picking foods from the lighter menu, you can cut fat intake by half.
* Order the smallest size to take the edge off until you can eat something healthier, and never “super-size” your meal.
* Get the smarter sides. Many fast food restaurants today make it easy to substitute a salad or fruit in place of fries. A scary fact: research shows that fries are the most frequently eaten vegetable, both inside and outside the home, and unfortunately they are loaded with the unhealthiest of saturated fats.
* Eat whole foods when possible—whole grains, veggies, fruit, lean meats, or baked potatoes. Less-processed foods contain less sugar and less fat. They also have more fiber, which fills you up so your cravings are controlled.
* Go for the thin or whole-wheat crust for the pizza and load up the veggies.

Get out of the fast food lane
The best fast food is no fast food! Simply by planning ahead and being prepared, you can make it past the gleaming neon lights of fast food row without the temptation next time.

* Plan your meals ahead of time. Set aside time every Sunday to plan your meals for the week. Schedule a meal or snack every three to four hours during the day so you don’t get overly hungry and grab a high-calorie diet buster.
* Shop smart. Bring a list to the store and stick to it. You should primarily be choosing the less processed foods that are usually found around the perimeter, such as fruit, vegetables, and lean protein.
* Make your own food. Prepare as much as you can ahead of time. Keep cut vegetables and fruit easily accessible. Pre-package portion controlled snacks.
* Stock your desk, car, or anywhere else you frequently find yourself away from home with Nutrition Bars or Nutrimeal™ and Fibergy® shake mixes, so when hunger strikes, you will be prepared.

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