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Fast Food and Your Health

Fast Food Facts

Copyright Michael Anthony

Ahhhh...Fast food. Whether it's fried chicken, tacos or burgers, we all love it just the same. Fast food has become a way of life for some people. Unbelieveably, that's what they eat for their 3 square meals a day. There is no difference between a Big Mac and a steak, to some people, anymore. When I was growing up, I hardly ever ate any fast food. My parents limited the fast food intake, thankfully. A lot of parent dont though. Sure, I love a bucket of fried chicken like the rest of you, but there is more to eating than fast food. We have come too dependent on quick, processed, ready to eat meals. I don't care if it's fast food or a meal in a frozen box. There should be no need for it, but I can see why it is appealing to many people.

I have to admit, I have eaten my fair share of fast food, and even still indulge in it once in awhile, albeit sparingly. I used to spend a good amount of time away from home and it wasn't easy to grab a good meal. Most of us today live a fast lifestyle like this. For one reason or another, we don't have time to prepare a decent meal.

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Here we will talk about some things you can get at your local fast food joints that are suprisingly healthy. I'm not going to tell you that they are better for you than a meal that you would cook on your own, but you already know that. If you are ordering a burger, get it without the mayo and the cheese. It might not sound like it, but you will cut a lot of fat out just by doing this simple thing. If the sandwich is too dry for you without the mayo, use mustard or ketchup. This will help it slide down easier.

The cheese that is used is the processed garbage type, loaded with oil and trans fat. You think that cheese is made of milk, but not all of it is. Some of it is made from hydrogenated cooking oil. If you love cheese as much as I do, you can tell just by looking at it. Cheese that is made from oil will have a different look. It will look orange and oily. Avoid anything with bacon on it. Now I love bacon myself, but I find that the bacon in fast food joints is very bad. They really don't cook it, they just put it under lights until it gets hot. Avoid this at all costs. You will save calories and you will be happy you did. Since I still love bacon, again, sparingly so, I like to cook the lowest fat content of bacon I can find and then add my own to the sandwich.

A good rule of thumb is to stay away from sandwiches that are deep fried. You know the ones I am talking about. The ones that have deep fried fish or chicken in them. The process of frying them in fat like this, makes them worse for your health. I would suggest that you go with chicken any time that you can. Generally chicken items will be lower in fat content. Don't get a chicken sandwich loaded with mayo or that has been deep fried. If the only chicken items they have are deep fried, look at the burger selections instead.

I would also suggest that you substitute french fries for a side salad. I know, what fun is fast food without fries? Well, from time to time they are okay. But, if you make a habit of eating fast food regularly, then you should stay away from them most of the time. Key words to remember is that I said most of the time. If you eat them occasionally, they won't hurt you. But if you are eating so many french fries that you can slick back your hair with the access grease on your hands, then you need to cut down on the fries a bit.

There seems to be a trend of meatless burgers that some fast food joints are carrying. I'm not sure if this is because there is a jump in the percent of people who don't eat meat. That could be, but if you live near a college, that might have something to do with it too. It is a big phase with college kids to be 'animal friendly'. This is of course until they get older and realize how much more tasty meat is compared to tofu.

At any rate, if they have meatless burgers at your local fast food joint, you can try them. Sometimes they will be less in fat than normal burgers. They might take a while to get used to. I can't say that I care much for these. I can't stand how rubbery they feel when you chew them. Keep in mind that just because its meatless, doesn't mean you can add one the cheese and mayo. Some of these burgers aren't THAT lower in fat. My favorite place to go is Subway. Well, any good sub shop will work just fine. You can load up your sandwich with tasty veggies instead of fatty stuff like mayo. I would still suggest that you go with chicken, though, and at most of these places, you can find turkey as well.

The great thing about Subway is that the fat content and the calorie information are visible for all to see.

They advertise it all over the store how much the sandwiches contain. You can load up on all kinds of veggies and not even worry about missing cheese or mayo. One way that you can keep the calories low is by drinking water or diet sodas. Personally I hate diet soda, so I just drink water instead. There are some zero calorie sodas and carbonated water that I really like though fast food joints don't normally sell these. You'll have to bring your own or ask for lemon that you can squirt into your water. That will give it a crisp taste that you will love and it will keep your mind off of the sodas.

This is just a quick and easy guide to fast food. The next time you go out to the burger joint, keep all this in mind.

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