You know that I preach home cooking and food prep. However, the reality is that sometimes life gets in the way and undermines our best efforts towards a healthy eating pattern. After all, we are human!  Let me guide you towards better choices at local Fast Food restaurants, so you can avoid the guilt that often comes with eating out.

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  1. Tim Hortons

    Eat This:  

    As an alternative option to bagels or muffins, that can also be eaten easily, try their Chicken Fajita Grilled Wrap. This sandwich has enough filling protein (28 g) with fibre (3 g) to keep your hunger at bay. Just ask them to go easy on the sauce to reduce the sodium!

    Not That:

    Being the busy person you are, you want to grab something quickly and eat it on the go, so what about one of those delicious, fluffy looking muffins? What about a bagel? These two choices are typically what many would choose because they are easy and they appeal to our sweet tooth’s. The downside of both of these options is the lack of fibre and protein in addition to the high carbohydrate count will leave you hungry sooner than later and provide very little quality nutrition.


  2. Harveys

    Eat This: 

    Looking for something a bit more creative than a standard burger? Build your own bowl using all your favourite burger items and a base of your choice. You can really make quite a nutritious and balanced meal even at a fast food place simply but starting with a base of lettuce, or try a half and half mix of rice and lettuce if you would like a heartier bowl, adding lots of vegetables mix-ins and topping it all off with a lean protein source). Of course, these bowls can also get a bit out of hand with things such as a base of French fries, a fried protein and a creamy sauce, so be mindful of what you add to your creation but have fun with it.


    Not That:

    If you’re really feeling like a burger, go for the Original Burger. It may still be high in sodium and fat, but compared to the fully loaded Angus Burger with Cheese and Bacon, the original saves you 10 grams of fat, 25 grams of saturated fat and 10% of your daily sodium.


  3. Pita Pitt

    Eat This:

    Pita Pitt is one of my favourite fast-food choices. They offer a variety of customizable options, with fresh and whole foods to chose from. You can’t go wrong here if you load up your pita with a ton of veggies OR in a bowl loaded with fresh veggies. My favourite picks from Pita Pit: Spicy Black Bean and Chicken Breast.

    Not That:

    To pick less often: the gyro pita, rib or bacon option.


  4. Mcdonalds

    Eat This:

    I’m absolutely loving the all-day breakfast at Mcdonalds. Try the original Egg McMuffin (without bacon) and you’ll get 16 grams of protein for under 300 calories! Don’t worry about ordering egg whites, like some fast-food breakfast chains offer. The egg contains essential fatty acids, vitamins and minerals. Do what I like to do and add a side garden salad for a complete meal!

    Not That:

    Any Crispy Chicken Sandwich. ‘Crispy’ in the fast food business is just code for ‘breaded with sugar and fried with fat’. Avoid at all costs.


  5. Panera Bread

    Eat This:

    My top picks at Panera bread include the Roasted Turkey and Avocado BLT on Sourdough Bread or the Strawberry Poppyseed Salad with Chicken.
    The sourdough breaded sandwich is easy to digest for those with tummy troubles and it has a well-rounded nutrition profile. The Strawberry Poppyseed Salad has enough protein and veggies to keep you full, for only 340 calories.

    Not That:

    TheWith the indulgent Italian Sandwich, you’ll wrack up a ton of calories (880 calories) and carbs (75g) that will leave you feeling over-full and bloated. You also almost double your daily sodium requirements in this sandwich.


  6. Starbucks

    Eat This:

    Starbucks has some of the best options for people on the go/for road trips. I love the Bistro Protein Box and the Hearty Veggie & Brown Rice Salad bowl. Both of these items offer real-food carbs and keep your hunger at bay.

    Not That:

    The Sausage and Cheddar Breakfast Sandwich carries too much nutrient-void carbs and belly-bloated salt, compared to the rest of the items on the Starbucks menu.


  7. Wendys

    Eat This:

    At Wendy’s, a big winner is the Asian Cashew Chicken Salad. At just under 400 calories and packed with vegetables, this salad is an excellent source of satisfying fiber (6 grams) and 37 g of protein. One word of caution: They often toss in a couple packs of salad dressing. Skip the second one; keep your dressing to no more than one packet

    Not That:

    Wendy’s Homestyle Asiago Ranch Chicken Club is one of the sneaky sandwiches that has seen the deep fryer, but evaded the “crispy” label. Then the whole thing is topped with bacon and ranch sauce to boot. That adds up to 140 more calories than a Big Mac!

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