|Take advantage of healthier menu options|
|Written by The Vidette Editorial Board|
|Sunday, 10 February 2013 13:18|
Diets seem to be becoming a thing of the past, and many people are ditching fads and simply choosing healthier options. Seeing that several restaurants are now providing low-calorie menu items, some are now eating out more often. Lower-calorie food at restaurants are healthier alternatives when eaten in moderation and are providing more business to eateries.
Eating greasy hamburgers and French fries is already typical for many Americans, causing some citizens to become obese at an early age. Since it may seem more convenient to go through a drive-thru than to cook a home-made meal, many people lack the nutrition that is needed for a healthy diet. With restaurants such as McDonald’s and other fast food chains placing calories on the menu and providing healthier alternatives to unhealthy items, getting take-out may not be such a bad idea.
The biggest issue people face when dealing with weight concerns and eating habits are portion sizes. It is easier to put more on your plate than you’re actually going to eat, hence the phrase, “Your eyes are bigger than your stomach.”
Restaurants are helping to solve that issue by cutting down on monstrous portion sizes and offering smaller, satisfying food portions.
According to The New York Times, several restaurants are feeling the pressure from customer demands to offer more nutritious choices.
“Sbarro for example, is offering a ‘skinny slice,’ with a different mix of cheese and more vegetables at 270 calories. Longhorn Steakhouse has smaller portions of beef that qualify for its lower calorie Flavorful Under 500 menu,” the article explained.
Additionally, eating healthier items is beneficial to one’s health but it is imperative to note that eating too many low calorie menu items, such as two ‘skinny slices’ from Sbarro, defeats the purpose of choosing a healthier option.
Fast food should be eaten with self-control as it does not always provide the nutrition needed in a healthy diet due to the fact that a good amount of restaurant food is processed food — food that has been altered from its natural state, either for safety purposes or for expediency, by being canned or frozen.
Since many individuals are catching on to the idea that eating healthier is valuable to their well being, restaurants that have low-calorie menu items have been seeing an increase in their consumers and sales.
According to an article published in The Huffington post, “[A new study] discovered that the chains that had added more low-cal items had performed strikingly better than the ones that hadn’t. Between 2006 and 2011, visits went up 10.9 percent at the chains that had beefed up their healthy offerings, while they dropped by 14.7 percent at the restaurants that had decreased their low-cal offers.”
If fast food restaurants want to flourish they need to jump on the bandwagon and be more concerned with the health factors that are associated with their products. Not only is providing low-calorie options helping restaurants to gain business, but simply providing the amount of calories of specific items that are on the menu informs
Essentially, making smart food choices is up to the consumer and the blame should not be placed on restaurants, whose main objective is to obtain profit anyway.
Be wise about what foods you are putting in your body and be conscientious of the low-fat menus that some restaurants are now providing.