Staying Healthy in College

Smart choices on the go

Fast food joints

Fast food joints


We all know that fast food is a prime culprit in weight gain. Staying home and cooking meals may be ideal, but for college kids, it is not exactly realistic. Between class, studying, sleeping, and relaxing, cooking at the end of the day is not always on the to-do list.

Some fast food restaurants are now offering lighter menu choices. Buyer beware, however, some are still packed with calories, sugar, and sodium. I have compiled a list of restaurants and some meal choices that are at the lower end of the calorie spectrum and also some high calorie things to stay away from.

Golden Chick: Two golden roasted chicken wings and a side of coleslaw: 377 calories

  • STAY AWAY FROM: Golden Tender Sandwich: 657 calories


Whataburger: Whataburger Jr. with bacon and cheese, add apple slices: 450 calories

  • STAY AWAY FROM: Whataburger Patty Melt: 1,100 calories


Noodles and Company: Small pad thai: 420 calories

  • STAY AWAY FROM: Small spaghetti and meatballs: 650 calories


Chili’s: Lighter choice grilled chicken sandwich with steamed broccoli: 480 calories

  • STAY AWAY FROM: Boneless buffalo chicken salad: 1,030 calories


Ihop: Simple-fit banana and brown sugar oatmeal with a side of bacon: 350 calories

  • STAY AWAY FROM: Garden omelette: 920 calories


FreeBirds: Two soft carnitas tacos with pinto beans, roasted veggies, queso fresco, pico de gallo and cilantro: 454 calories

  • STAY AWAY FROM: Side order of chips and queso: 761 calories


Taco Bell: Fresco bean burrito: 350 calories

  • STAY AWAY FROM: Fiesta taco salad with beef: 780 calories


Jack in the Box: Grilled chicken strips with teriyaki dipping sauce and one egg roll: 397 calories

  • STAY AWAY FROM: Bacon ultimate cheeseburger: 910 calories


Chick-fil-A: 8 count nuggets with one Chick-fil-A sauce and a small fruit cup: 450 calories

  • STAY AWAY FROM: Spicy chicken sandwich deluxe: 570 calories


Sonic: Jr. burger with small ocean water: 490 calories

  • STAY AWAY FROM: Large blue coconut slush: 450 calories


I found all of the nutritional information on each restaurant’s website. Surprisingly, the options I thought would have the least caloric value, such as salads, had just as many or even more calories as a burger! Luckily, eating out doesn’t have to result in weight gain. While I don’t recommend eating fast food for the majority of the time, when its necessary, there are choices that can be made that won’t result in guilt at the end of the day.


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This entry was posted on April 18, 2014 by in Healthy Lifestyle and tagged , , .
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