What Restaurants Won’t Tell You: What’s Hiding In Your Food Some restaurants are really coming around to the health-conscious revolution – adding calorie counts to the menu, using local produce, and offering healthier dishes. But are they telling the truth, or is it a ploy to attract your business? Their health-conscious efforts may have good intentions , but read our inside scoop before you head out to dinner tonight. The Healthy Portion Sizes I’ll admit, I was pretty excited when I started noticing the rising trend of restaurants listing their calorie content on their menus. Until I asked a few places what was included in the calorie count. I’ve probably asked this question at 4-5 restaurants, from small sandwich shops to fancy downtown restaurants, and I’ve yet to receive an answer other than “I’m not really sure.” I get it, the waiter/waitress doesn’t prepare the food or dish it up, but when the cook doesn’t know either, something is fishy. As a general rule of thumb, go ahead and tack on at least 100 calories to whatever number you see. Because of the inconsistency of how each dish is prepared and portion size differences , the calorie content listed is not an exact science. Fast-food chains actually have more accurate calorie counts than larger, sit-down restaurants, since their ingredients typically come to the store already portioned. The “Special” Is your favorite soup the special of the day? Yay! …Think again before you rejoice. Typically, the special is whatever the cook needs to sell before it goes bad in a few days. If the special contains fish or any other sensitive, very perishable item, you’re better off ordering something else. Like a salad… Beware of Calorie Bombs You think you’re making a healthy choice by ordering a salad, right? Even if your dressing is on the side, you’re likely not eating the healthiest or lowest calorie item on the menu. Beware of one buzzword that seriously amps up the calories in your salad – glazed. Glazed is translation for smothered in unhealthy sauce or dumped with sugar. While you’re ordering your dressing on the side, order the cheese on the side, too. Often times the lack of dressing is made up for with a giant scoop of cheese, completely defeating your healthy efforts. Farm Fresh and Local Food With few exceptions, these labels typically apply to just one or two ingredients in your 10-ingredient meal. Purchasing produce from local or organic vendors is often more expensive for the restaurant, so they’ll do so for some things and not others. While this doesn’t necessarily make your meal less healthy, if the source of your food is important to you, you may want to ask a few questions before ordering. Of course, preparing your own food will pretty much always be healthier than eating out. But sometimes you need to go out for a treat! You can absolutely do so without ruining your healthy diet, just be aware of those keys words and calorie bombs! About the Author: FHMatch, all-in-one `Business in a Box ! If you're a professional this is for you, it’s always FREE to showcase your profile on FHMatch! Empowering professionals to engage, manage and grow their client base - everything you need to get started in 3 min or less. |Merchant Payments|Unlimited - No Fee Booking, Invoicing & Messaging| Showcase Photos & Videos, Subsidized Insurance|