Special Report

The Healthiest Option at Every Fast Food Restaurant

Source: Courtesy of Starbucks

Starbucks: Classic Oatmeal
> Serving size: 42 g (1 bowl)
> Calories: 160
> Total amount of sugar: 0.0 g
> Total amount of fat: 2.5 g
> Total amount sodium: 125 mg

Oats are considered one of the healthiest of all grains as they are full of nutrients. They are gluten-free, and, as a good source of fiber, are believed to help control blood sugar and reduce LDL (“bad”) cholesterol. This Starbucks breakfast option is made with whole-grain rolled and steel-cut oats as well as oat flour. It’s served without sweetener, but be aware that adding sugar or honey will also add calories.

Source: Courtesy of McDonald's

McDonald’s: Chicken McNuggets
> Serving size: about 64 g (4 nuggets; individual size varies)
> Calories: 186
> Total amount of sugar: 0.0 g
> Total amount of fat: 11.6 g
> Total amount sodium: 404 mg

In 2016, McDonald’s announced that artificial preservatives would be removed from McNuggets, the chain’s deep-fried boneless chicken white meat pieces. Though more than half their calories come from fat, a four-piece serving is still relatively virtuous simply because it isn’t very big. Be careful with the dipping sauces, though, as they can add calories, sodium, and fat (the Creamy Ranch Sauce is the most caloric, at 110 calories per serving).

Source: Courtesy of Wendy's

Wendy’s: Plain Baked Potato
> Serving size: 9.5 to 12 oz (1 potato; serving size varies)
> Calories: 270
> Total amount of sugar: 3.0 g
> Total amount of fat: 0.0 g
> Total amount sodium: 25 mg

The third largest burger operation by total U.S. sales, Wendy’s is the only major chain offering baked potatoes at all of its American locations. The company sells a million of them a week — 52 million a year — according to Thrillist. Wendy’s serves its spuds with nothing added (potatoes naturally contain small amounts of sodium and sugar), but adding such condiments as cheese, bacon bits, butter, sour cream, and/or salt makes them somewhat less healthy.

Source: Courtesy of Taco Bell

Taco Bell: Seasoned Rice
> Serving size: 73.7 g (1 bowl)
> Calories: 120
> Total amount of sugar: 0.0 g
> Total amount of fat: 2.0 g
> Total amount sodium: 190 mg

Enriched long-grain rice accented with tomatoes, bell peppers, various spices, and other ingredients, Taco Bell’s Seasoned Rice is a good choice for the diet-conscious. The chain

suggests numerous possible upgrades, add-ons, and sauces, including guacamole, nacho cheese sauce, beans, seasoned fries, shredded chicken, and creamy jalapeño sauce that can add 30, 80, and even 110 calories per serving.

Source: Courtesy of Jack in the Box

Jack in the Box: Grilled Chicken Salad
> Serving size: 373 g
> Calories: 250
> Total amount of sugar: 13.0 g
> Total amount of fat: 9.0 g
> Total amount sodium: 750 mg

This salad is a smaller version of the chain’s main course chicken salad. It is made with white meat of chicken, lettuce, grape tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots, and shredded cheddar cheese. The nutritional values here don’t include dressing (Jack in the Box’s creamy Southwest dressing has 190 calories for a 1.8 oz. serving), unfortunately, nor do they include the corn sticks that are a standard accompaniment (another 60 calories per stick).