You’re sitting in your car as the hunger pangs start to set in and you’re stomach begins to ache for something to eat. You’re trying to follow your healthy nutritional plan but you left all your prepared food in the fridge this morning. You need something quick and nutritious that will fill you up and not completely destroy your diet. So, what are your options? If you think you can’t step foot into a fast food restaurant, you’re wrong. Nowadays, almost every fast food restaurant has healthier, low-calorie options you can choose from to make sure you’re fueling your body optimally without sabotaging your diet with the wrong foods. Below are the top healthy food choices you can make when you’re running around town and need a quick meal that wont blow your diet.
Healthy Fast Food Option #1 – Chinese Food
There are a couple of food options at your local Chinese take out restaurant that can be very low-calorie, delicious and very quick when you’re on the run. Chinese restaurants are everywhere around town, so it should be very easy for you to find a location for a quick pickup. The top choices for a healthy Chinese meal is the steamed chicken broccoli or steamed shrimp broccoli (no sauce). Make sure you get it steamed with no sauce since the brown sauce they add is very sugary. Get a couple of packets of soy sauce and pour them over your meal. Another healthy option is the Moo Goo Gai Pan (chicken with veggies). Make sure to ask them to make it with the light chicken broth based sauce,
Healthy Fast Food Option #2 – Chicken Sandwich
If you want to save hundreds of calories and a bunch of fat grams, forget about the double bacon cheeseburger and opt for the grilled chicken sandwich. The key here is to get your grilled chicken sandwich with no cheese and leave off all the extra mayonnaise and any additional sauces they add. Get it with lettuce, tomato and onion for the healthiest options. If you want to dribble a little ketchup on it, that’s fine but don’t go overboard since ketchup has a lot of sugar in it. Along with your sandwich, ask for a small side salad with the dressing on the side. Also, make sure they don’t add a bunch of high calorie and fat laden items on your salad like cheese, bacon, egg and croutons.
Healthy Fast Food Option #3 – Chicken Salad with Fruit Cup
There are many great chicken salad options at fast food restaurants. The key is what goes on top of the salad and the biggest calorie killer is the dressing. Some salads out there contain more calories than a burger with fries! Make sure you get your salad with grilled chicken (never breaded) and make sure they leave off the cheese, bacon, egg and croutons. Always get the salad dressing on the side and go for the balsamic vinaigrette or the low-calorie ranch dressing. If you don’t get the dressing on the side, they will usually dump a monster amount of it on your salad which will pump up the calories and fat grams through the roof. The main ingredients you want on your salad are basically all the veggies you can get your hands on. Lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and carrots are excellent low-calorie and nutrient dense ingredients to add to any salad to make it a power packed meal. Along with your salad, ask for a fruit cup which is a nice addition to this meal.
Healthy Fast Food Option #4 – High Protein Smoothie
A high protein smoothie is a great choice for a quick meal when you’re on the run. Choose one that is made with either water or nonfat milk as the base. Choose whey protein powder and have them add some fruit to it like strawberries, bananas or blueberries. If you want to be really healthy, ask for a shot of wheatgrass either on the side or in your smoothie. Wheatgrass is amazing because it detoxifies the liver, cleanses the colon and boosts the immune system. Wheatgrass also contains 97 enzymes, vitamins, phytochemicals and minerals. A quick protein smoothie is a tasty and cool treat when you’re stuck in your car on a hot day.
Healthy Fast Food Option #5 – Cottage Cheese and Fruit
A great option when you’re out running around and need something quick and nutritious, is to hit the grocery store. The best options in the grocery store for a healthy meal is to grab some cottage cheese and a small bowl of fruit in the produce section. The cottage cheese supplies you with muscle building protein and the fruit will give you the right vitamins and minerals to keep you going all day long. Along with these options at the grocery store, you can usually find some prepackaged hard-boiled eggs or a package of tuna with crackers that is ready to eat (StarKist Lunch To-Go is a great option).
As you can see, it’s not very difficult to choose healthy, nutritious foods when you’re traveling and need a quick meal. It’s all about being disciplined and making the right choices when it comes to your diet. When you choose the right foods to put in your body, you will feel better, have more energy and reach your fitness goals faster!