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Save calories on your next fast food splurge

Friday, September 28, 2007 | 3:00 p.m. CDT; updated 6:36 a.m. CDT, Friday, July 18, 2008

The bad news? It’s hard to eat right away from home, and too many calorie-dense meals out can mean death for your diet. The good news? A fast food splurge doesn’t have to leave you with a case of eater’s remorse. The next time a ready-made craving hits, swap out your favorite fare for a lighter menu option and chow down without guilt.

McDonald’s

Instead of: A sausage biscuit with egg (500 calories, 32 grams of fat)

Try: An Egg McMuffin (300 calories, 12 grams of fat)

You save: 200 calories and 20 grams of fat

Avoid: Any of the breakfast combination meals, which contain up to 1,140 calories and 59 grams of fat. Would you like the name of a good heart surgeon with that?

Taco Bell

Instead of: A beef burrito supreme (410 calories, 17 grams of fat)

Try: A Fresco-style beef soft taco supreme (190 calories, 7 grams of fat)

You save: 220 calories and 10 grams of fat

Avoid: The fiesta taco salad. With 840 calories and 45 grams of fat, it’ll have you making a run for the treadmill.

Starbucks

Instead of: The grande caramel frappuccino blended coffee with whipped cream (380 calories, 15 grams of fat)

Try: A tall caramel frappuccino light blended coffee sans whip (140 calories, 1.5 grams of fat)

You save: 240 calories and 13.5 grams of fat

Avoid: The blueberries and creme frappuccino with whipped cream. This frosty treat tips the nutrition scales at 470 calories and contains 15 grams of fat. Yikes!

Panera

Instead of: A chicken-salad sandwich on sesame semolina bread (670 calories, 25 grams of fat)

Try: A smoked turkey breast sandwich on sourdough (430 calories, 14 grams of fat)

You save: 240 calories and 11 grams of fat

Avoid: The tuna salad sandwich, which packs a hearty wallop at 840 calories and 44 grams of fat.

Sources: McDonald's; Taco Bell; Starbucks; Panera


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