Crisp, crunchy, and vibrant, salads are now becoming the chosen entrée for many restaurant-goers. Let’s be honest, we order a salad because we think it is a healthy choice, right? Your typical restaurant side salad consists of greens, cucumber, tomato, and shredded carrots. Besides being just plain boring, it usually tastes like you’re eating cold paper—not so appetizing. Salad shouldn’t be something we have to eat; it should be something we want to eat.
Therefore, restaurants usually adorn their entrée-sized salads with copious amounts of dressing and other questionably “healthy” items. These sneaky additions turn a reasonably nutritious salad into a dish that is no better than a McDonald’s Big Mac. The Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine published a list comparing the calories, fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium contained in some popular salads alongside the infamous McDonald’s Big Mac.
· Big Mac: 550 calories, 29g fat, 10g saturated fat, 75mg cholesterol, 970mg sodium
· California Pizza Kitchen’s Moroccan-Spiced Chicken Salad, Full: 1500 calories, 99g fat, 10g saturated fat, 295mg cholesterol, 1380mg sodium
· Applebee’s Grilled Shrimp ‘N Spinach Salad, Regular: 1000 calories, 66g fat, 10g saturated fat, 195mg cholesterol, 2990mg sodium
· Chili’s Quesadilla Explosion Salad: 1430 calories, 96g fat, 28g saturated fat, 175mg cholesterol, 2620mg sodium (*worse than 2 Big Macs in all categories)
· IHOP’s Crispy Chicken Cobb Salad w/Avocado: 1350 calories, 104g fat, 29g saturated fat, 590mg cholesterol, 2980mg sodium
http://www.pcrm.org/pdfs/health/reports/100%20Restaurant%20Salads%20That%20Are%20Worse%20Than%20a%20Big%20Mac%20Data.pdfThe entire list can be found here:
If you’re really craving a good salad, don’t be afraid to order one! Simply remove the cheese, avoid creamy dressings, request the dressing on the side, and always remember that you can ask for additional vegetables. While some restaurant salads may be worse than a Big Mac, please note that not all of them are. Armed with these tips, next time you visit a restaurant, you will truly be able to make a healthy choice.