My daughter Emily and I were having lunch not long ago at Applebee’s in Owensboro. We’re both becoming more and more health conscious and try not to consume more than our day’s share or allotted calories. To that end, not long ago, I downloaded the Fast Food Calorie Counter App and use it religiously. This app has the foods listed for 106 different restaurants (including every fast food chain you can think of). It’s fast and easy to use and can help you make smarter decisions.
USUALLY (you know how those usuallys go), I consult my app before I even leave the house – so I have a game plan before I even touch the menu. However, this time we didn’t even decide where we were eating until we were practically in the parking lot! As we sat at the table, we’d both just about made up our minds when I decided to “double check” our choices – choices that seemed innocent enough. Can you say, “Nearly a day’s entire allottment of calories in one meal?!?!”
We wanted no part of that, so we entirely switched gears and made MUCH smarter and healthier choices. Emily, right then and there, asked me what app I’d just used and downloaded it to her iPhone on the spot.
Most people simply have no idea the number of calories they’re consuming. We tend to take in a whole lot more calories than we realize, especially when eating out. If you don’t have a device for using apps, do the next best thing – either buy a book that lists calories in restaurant foods or get into the habit of visiting a restaurant’s website before you even leave the house. You’ll be absolutely amazed by the number of calories in the food you’ve been eating! They add up ridiculously and are contributing to the growing problem we face with obesity and diabetes.
Below are a few shockers:
Applebee’s Reuben Sandwich – 1,150 calories
Applebee’s California Turkey Club – 920 calories
Applebee’s side of onion rings – 530 calories
Applebee’s side of French Fries – 400 calories
Applebee’s Oriental Chicken Rollup – 1,140 calories
Applebee’s Chicken Fajita Rollup – 560 calories
Applebee’s Chicken Parmesan – 1400 calories
Applebee’s Crispy Orange Chicken – 1510 calories
Applebee’s Fiesta Lime Chicken – 1140 calories
Applebee’s Provolone-Stuffed Meatballs with Fettuccine – 1530 calories
If you add the side of fries to the sandwich or rollup, you’ll see how an innocent looking lunch becomes a nightmare!
Some better choices at Applebee’s:
Applebee’s Weight Watchers Cajun Lime Tilapia – 350 calories
Applebee’s Spicy Pineapple Glazed Shrimp and Spinach – 310 calories
Applebee’s Black Bean Soup – 190 calories
Steak & Grilled Shrimp Combo – 530 calories
Applebee’s Chicken Caesar Salad – 300 calories
Applebee’s has an OUTSTANDING “Under 550 Calories’ Menu that I use just about every time. Each item on this menu is exceptional – and as filling as any of the other meals boasting much higher calories. It isn’t applicable at Applebee’s, but if you’re eating at a restaurant that keeps a steady stream of bread coming to your table, be sure to calculate each roll or bread stick into your meal. As a country, we’re simply eating way too many calories.
Something I’m trying to get better at is avoiding appetizers – we’re talking hundreds (often upon hundreds) of extra, unnecessary calories. Most appetizers aren’t good for you in any way whatsoever. It’d be much wiser to simply order a side salad if you’re starving and anticipate a wait. I have no idea why, but appetizers are SUCH a weakness for me – even more so than desserts.
Here’s the link to the wonderful calorie counter app for fast food. I wouldn’t dream of leaving home without it!