Special Report

The Healthiest Option at Every Fast Food Restaurant

Source: Courtesy of KFC

KFC: Whole Kernel Corn
> Serving size: 95 g (1 bowl)
> Calories: 100
> Total amount of sugar: 2.0 g
> Total amount of fat: 0.5 g
> Total amount sodium: 0 mg

Potatoes aside, the KFC menu isn’t big on vegetables, but in addition to cole slaw and green beans, it does offer this surprisingly low-calorie (and unsalted) serving of sweet yellow corn kernels, cut from the cob.

Source: Courtesy of Popeyes

Popeyes: Handcrafted Tenders – Blackened
> Serving size: 113 g (3 tenders)
> Calories: 170
> Total amount of sugar: 0.0 g
> Total amount of fat: 2.0 g
> Total amount sodium: 550 mg

Unlike other chicken specialties at this popular fried chicken chain — the third largest by U.S. sales — the blackened tenders have no breading or batter. These tenders (three to an order) account for about a quarter of the daily sodium intake recommended by the Food and Drug Administration — which sounds like a lot, until you realize that three of the regular tenders contain more than three times the sodium of the blackened ones (also more than two-and-a-half times the calories).

Source: Courtesy of Arby's

Arby’s: Chopped Side Salad
> Serving size: 128 g
> Calories: 70
> Total amount of sugar: 2.0 g
> Total amount of fat: 5.0 g
> Total amount sodium: 100 mg

“We love you, lettuce. You’re almost like a meat to us,” proclaims this meat-centric chain’s website. This side salad is made with lettuce (not too finely chopped, as it happens) with tomato wedges and shredded cheddar.

Source: Courtesy of Dairy Queen

Dairy Queen: Side Salad
> Serving size: 113 g
> Calories: 25
> Total amount of sugar: 3.0 g
> Total amount of fat: 0.0 g
> Total amount sodium: 15 mg

Lettuce, tomatoes, carrots, and red cabbage comprise this low-calorie salad. The chain offers 11 different Marzetti brand dressings for the salad, ranging in calories from 15 per portion for Light Italian to 210 for Thousand Island (but the bad news is that the Light Italian has the highest sodium count of any of them, with 730 milligrams.)

Source: vikif / Getty Images

Baskin-Robbins: Lemon Sorbet
> Serving size: 71 g (1 small scoop)
> Calories: 60
> Total amount of sugar: 11.0 g
> Total amount of fat: 0.0 g
> Total amount sodium: 0 mg

This venerable ice cream chain is famous for its uncommon flavors — Bourbon Street Pecan Pie, Cotton Candy, Pink Bubblegum, Creole Cream Cheese, and the like — but a small (kid-size) scoop of fancy flavors like those can have as much as 280 calories. Lemon sorbet is a fraction of that, with no fat or sodium added. (Baskin-Robbins regularly alternates flavors on its menu, so this option might not always be available.)