In today's fast-paced way of living, there's a fast-paced way of eating. Unfortunately, taking shortcuts in your diet is significantly more harmful than running yellow lights on your way to the office. Most fast food items are laden with sugar, unhealthy fats and extremely high levels of sodium, among other things. However, if you insist upon hitting the drive through, then not all is lost -- most fast food restaurants nowadays have menu items that are reasonably healthy (if you can muster the willpower to not order your favorite bacon cheeseburger). Some simple changes can make a big difference in fat content and calorie consumption at the drive through.
1. Downsize. When ordering a burger, don't opt for the super sized burger with all the trimmings. A much better choice would be to ask for the regular or child size burger. Don't stop there, help out that choice even further by cutting out the mayo and sticking with fresh vegetable options like onions, lettuce, tomatoes and add just a little pepper for taste. Stay away from the salt, fast food places are known for their over indulgence in salt, so you never need to add more.
2. Choose the turkey. A turkey sandwich is a better choice than a fatty burger, even a small one. The turkey will go easy on the calories, but also on the fat content. Keep condiments to a minimum and always remember that any time you add fresh vegetables to top a sandwich instead of heavy fat-laden creamy dressings, you are doing yourself a favor.
3. Hold the cheese. Cheese makes a burger or a sandwich that much more enticing, but if you are watching your waistline, it's better to nix the cheese for it's fat content. A good rule of thumb is if it's heavy and gooey, it will probably taste good, but the health risk isn't worth it. Get in the habit of leaving off the cheese and just that subtle difference will make a big difference in better nutrition.
4. How is it being cooked. Remember that the way something is cooked is important, too. Always try to choose the charbroiled type of meat, instead of deep fried - again fried in fat, and that's never a good thing.
5. Eliminate the fries. Yes, this can be done and the sooner, the better. Once you get used to ordering fast food without the fries, you won't think twice about it. If this suggestion is really hard for you, take a look at the fat content and the calorie total. That fact alone should make you want to stick with this option.
6. Switch from the ice cream sundae to the yogurt. OK, so the yogurt isn't going to have the drippy chocolate syrup making its way down the side of the sundae, but it will give you a better overall choice. The calories will obviously be less, but if you "dress it up" with some fresh fruit instead, you will have a treat you will get to love.
Making the transition to healthy eating at the drive-through isn't as exciting as choosing the super jumbo size burger with all the other bad things that usually go with it. But once the change is made, you will notice how good this "new" food tastes and how good it can be for you.