I know. Our health would be infinitely more healthy if we simply didn’t order any food at all from fast food restaurants. Unfortunately, there are times when we all break down and head to the drive through.  So, if you’re trying to stay healthy, what should you order from a fast rood restaurant?

Not everything at fast food restaurants is horribly unhealthy. One of the largest problems that we have in this country is that our portion sizes are way off. No one needs to eat a large sandwich, large French fry and a milk shake for lunch or dinner. If that’s what you typically have when you visit your favorite fast food restaurant, guess what …. you’ve just consumed about 1900 calories. That’s more than the calories a healthy, average sized woman needs to eat in an entire day.

Here are some healthier options. Remember, the key is moderation. French fries aren’t a horrible choice, a large order is.

  • Try to keep your entire meal to about 500 calories. Restaurants are required to have calorie counts available. Look on their website or ask.
  • Look for meats that are low in fat content. Stay away from anything that is batter dipped, crunchy, deep fried or has added bacon. Grilled chicken is a healthier choice that crispy chicken or chicken nuggets.
  • Watch the condiments. Added mayonnaise and sauces are just one way you may be getting more calories than you expected. Don’t be afraid to hold the condiments. Add extra veggies instead.
  • Choose the smallest size. When you order a meal or a side, always order the smallest size available. A  Cheeseburger Happy Meal from McDonalds has about 640 calories. Despite the name, it’s the perfect choice for an adult and more calories than a small child needs.
  • Choose your salad carefully. You might think that a salad would be the best choice and it might be. But, if you’re adding “crispy” chicken, bacon bits, and fatty salad dressing to it, you may be better off to order a Happy Meal. Order grilled chicken instead of crispy chicken and skip the salad dressing.
  • Skip the French fries. If your sandwich already has 500 calories in it, do you really need another 500 from an order of French fries?

The next time you want to swing through the fast food drive through after a ball game or while you’re traveling, think carefully about what you’ll be ordering if you’re trying to make healthier choices.