The annual X Games celebrate the most extreme action sports, but the only action the Xtreme Eating Awards sees is moving fork to mouth. Meet the Xtreme Eating Awards: the annual awards by the Center for Science in the Public Interest that recognize the fast food and other chain restaurant dishes with the most calories, and highest sodium and fat content. This year’s group of winners (or losers, depending on if you chase them down with heartburn medicine!), all tipped the scale at over 2,000 calories. The average person’s calorie intake per day is between 2,000 and 2,500 calories.
The competition was tough, and full of layered meat and cheese, but the dish that came out on top was Red Robin’s Monster Meal burger: a 3,540-calorie meal that comes with a 1,670-calorie bacon cheeseburger, a bottomless shake, and bottomless fries, which all in all will cost you three and a half days of saturated fat.
Can you stomach more? Check out The Daily Meal's 15 Unhealthiest Chain Restaurant Dishes (Slideshow)
"When we were screening candidates for the first Xtreme Eating awards in 2007, we were shocked to see 1,500-calorie entrées," reads the CSPI website. "This year, nearly all of our “winners” hit (or just missed) the 2,000-calorie mark. And a few doozies topped 3,000 calories."
Wow. Other big winners included the “Big Hook Up” platter from Joe’s Crab Shack (a fried seafood platter with jalapeño cream cheese balls) at 3,280 calories; bruléed French toast from the Cheesecake Factory at 2,780 calories; and the 2,770-calorie “Big Slab” meal from Famous Dave’s, which resembles the rack of ribs from The Flintstone’s.
Out of the nine calorie bombs on the list, three dishes were awarded to The Cheesecake Factory.
For the latest happenings in the food and drink world, visit our Food News page.
Joanna Fantozzi is an Associate Editor with The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter@JoannaFantozzi
The 15 Highest-Calorie Restaurant Meals
Alright, so you're probably not heading to most of the places that made this list thinking "I'll have a nice, light meal this evening!" but you might not know the extent of what you're about to get into. That said, this sh*t's gooooooood.
What's in it: Deep-fried cheese curds on top of lettuce, tomato, onion, American cheese, a mayonnaise-based sauce, and two strips of bacon.
What it'll set you back: 1,950 calories, 53 grams of saturated fat, and 4,700 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: The meat, plus a dressed baked potato and blue cheese wedge side salad, as well as half a loaf of free bread with butter.
What it'll set you back: 2,400 calories, 71 grams saturated fat, and 3,650 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: Eggs stuffed with cheeseburger patty pieces, hash browns, tomatoes, onions, American cheese ketchup, mustard, and pickles, plus a side of buttered and syrup-ed pancakes.
What it'll set you back: 1,990 calories, 45 grams of saturated fat, and 4,580 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: A double patty with bacon, cherry pepper and ShackSauce on top. Plus a side of fries and a peanut butter shake.
What it'll set you back: 2,240 calories, 55 grams of saturated fat, and 3,170 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: Vanilla ice cream mixed with pineapple, salted caramel, and pie crust pieces.
What it'll set you back: 2,020 calories, 61 grams of saturated fat, 4.5 grams of trans fat, and 29 teaspoons of sugar.
What's in it: A giant quesadilla stuffed with Manchego and cheddar cheeses, pepperoni, and Italian sausage, which is then smothered in more cheese, pepperoni, and sausage. It's also got bacon and marinara sauce.
What it'll set you back: 1,970 calories, 67 grams of saturated fat, and 4,440 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: 40 chicken nuggets and the accompanying dipping sauces.
What it'll set you back: 1,880 calories, 20 grams of saturated fat, and 3,600 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: Three quarter-pound patties with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, onions, and condiments.
What it'll set you back: 1,090 calories, 30 grams of saturated fat, and 1,910 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: Polish sausage, pork ribs, and beef brisket with sides of fried onion tanglers and mac and cheese with an ice cream cone for dessert.
What it'll set you back: 2,500 calories, 49 grams of saturated fat, and 4,700 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: Three shrimp dishes (Parrot Isle Jumbo Coconut, Walt's Favorite, and Linguine Alfredo), french fries, Caesar salad, and a Cheddar Bay Biscuit with a 24-ounce Lobsterita.
What it'll set you back: 3,600 calories, 37 grams of saturated fat, and 6,530 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: Butter and cream-flavored pasta topped with Italian sausage, pepperoni, meatballs, and bacon.
What it'll set you back: 2,310 calories, 79 grams of saturated fat and 4,370 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: Scrambled eggs, bacon, chicken chorizo, cheese, crispy potatoes, avocado, peppers and onions . with a side of sour cream and black beans.
What it'll set you back: 2,730 calories, 73 grams of saturated fat, and 4,630 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: Four-cheese mac and cheese topped with crispy breaded chicken tenders that are tossed in honey pepper sauce and topped with bacon.
What it'll set you back: 1,830 calories, 92 grams of saturated fat, and 4,300 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: Applewood smoked bacon, cheddar cheese, crisp leaf lettuce, fresh tomato, sliced onion, and special sauce on double patties.
What it'll set you back: 3,500 calories, 88 grams of saturated fat, and 3,720 milligrams of sodium.
What's in it: A choice of baby back ribs, smoked brisket, jalapeño-cheddar smoked sausage, BBQ chicken breast, or chicken tenders with sides of roasted street corn, fries, chile-garlic toast, and garlic dill pickles.
What it'll set you back: At least 1,270 calories, depending on your combination choice, 20 grams of saturated fat, and 2,960 milligrams of sodium.
Fries, burgers and nuggets can be high in energy, saturated fat and sodium. Which is okay if you only eat them once a month or less, but regularly choosing this for your takeaway may take its toll on your heart and waistline. But, over the years, we’ve seen some healthier choices added to burger joint menus, including grilled options, wraps and salads.
Grilled Chicken & Aioli McWrap
2170kJ, 2.6g sat fat, 885mg sodium
The wholemeal Snack Wraps® and warm grilled chicken salad, with a small side of fries, also meet HFG meal recommendations.
Boost the fibre of any meal by choosing a salad side.
The Big Cheese could be half your daily energy requirements, more than your saturated fat and two-thirds of your sodium limits (4430kJ, 33.4g sat fat, 1540mg sodium). And it’s not the only one.
Think twice about the Almighty Angus ½lb Burger (4200kJ, 27.9g sat fat,1430mg sodium), The Boss (3570kJ, 26.3g sat fat, 958mg sodium) or the Double Quarter Pounder (3440kJ, 26.7g sat fat, 1160mg sodium). + add 967kJ, 1g sat fat, 222mg sodium for a serve of small fries.
Too good to be true?
Make sure you order the right Chicken & Aioli McWrap.
Choosing crispy rather than grilled chicken kicks the sodium up to 1010mg per serve. And the Loaded Lettuce Wrap may be lower in carbs but still has 10.3g saturated fat and 1270mg sodium with grilled chicken and 11.2g sat fat and 1480mg sodium with crispy chicken.
BBQ Chicken Burger
(1328kJ, 1.2g sat fat, 770mg sodium)
Carl’s CatchFish Burger
(2463kJ, 7.7g sat fat, 923mg sodium)
It’s easy to go nutritionally overboard at Carl’s Jr. Western Bacon Angus Double Burger, is twice our recommended meal amount for energy, and has whopping amounts of sat fat and sodium (5667kJ, 42.3g sat fat, 1776mg sodium). And all of that has just 3.8g fibre.
Also watch out for the Jim Beam Bourbon Angus Double Burger (5421kJ, 42.1g sat fat, 1662mg sodium). + add 1029kJ, 2.1g sat fat, 493mg sodium for a serve of small fries.
Too good to be true?
Don’t think vege options are always healthier. Carl’s Jr. Veggie Burger exceeds recommended limits, with 3165kJ, 7.3g sat fat, 1323mg sodium per serve.
Whopper JR, with 1364kJ, 4.7g sat fat and 468mg sodium, may be small but ticks the right boxes, even with a side of small fries. Add a side salad and it makes a good meal.
Other better choices are the BBQ beef burger (1363kJ, 4.6g sat fat, 774mg sodium). Whopper JR Cheese may be more satisfying with 1546kJ (7g sat fat and 562mg sodium).
Whopper Double Cheese (3970kJ, 24g sat fat, 1103mg sodium)
Brewers Angus Steakhouse (3730kJ, 19g sat fat, 1352mg sodium)
BK Chicken Hawaiian (3478kJ, 11.3g sat fat, 1504mg sodium)
+ add 930kJ, 1g sat fat, 39mg sodium for a serve of small fries.
Too good to be true?
Sounds good? Salad isn’t all you’ll get with the Salad Burger. It has 7.9g sat fat and 1128mg sodium.
Wholemeal Wraps (Peri peri and Caesar) are a step in the right direction for fibre, but they also pack a sodium punch with 1206mg and 1195mg respectively.
On their own, these are better choices, but take care if you’re adding a side of fries or a drink. The energy, saturated fat and sodium can quickly add up.
Colonel Burger (1580kJ, 1.8g sat fat 830mg sodium)
Aioli Twister (2068kJ, 2.7g sat fat, 711mg sodium)
Sweet Chilli Twister (1860kJ, 5.8mg sat fat, 750mg sodium)
Crispy Chicken Wrap (1046kJ, 1.3g sat fat, 453mg sodium)
Colonel’s Stack Zinger Burger (3631kJ, 10g sat fat, 2461mg sodium)
Aioli Bacon Zinger Burger (3341kJ, 8g sat fat, 1694mg sodium)
+ add 1180kJ, 1.4g sat fat, 288mg sodium for a serve of regular fries (there is no small fries option).
Too good to be true?
Shaker Salad may seem like a healthy option, but comes with 1278mg sodium. And a large
Mango Smoothie Crusher pushed the boundaries, with 2012kJ, 5.7g sat fat and 82g carbs per large serve.
We found at least 10 Websites Listing below when search with fattiest food in the world on Search Engine
10 Most Fattening Foods in the World HuffPost Life
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10 Most Fattening Foods in the World You might think that the United States, with its super-sized portions, absurdly high obesity rate, and uniquely American innovations like the Doritos Locos Taco, is home to the world's most fattening foods. But you'd be wrong!
The 13 Most Fattening Foods on Earth
- Fat is flavor, after all, so the more fat a food has the tastier it will be
- Add in copious amounts of salt or sugar, and you’ve got a prescription for addictive tastiness
- From ice cream to chicken fried steak, we’ve rounded up the 13 most fattening foods on the planet
- The 13 Most Fattening Foods on Earth (Slideshow)
The 13 Most Fattening Foods on Earth
- Ounce for ounce, nuts are the most fat-dense foods on earth, but thankfully the fat in them is very high in monounsaturated fat, which actually promotes overall health
- A one-cup serving of almonds, for example, weighs 92 grams and contains 45 grams of fat, meaning it contains nearly 49 percent fat. Good thing it’s a healthy fat!
What is the fattiest food in the world
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Now, any food which has excessive proportions of carbohydrates (especially sugars) and fats (especially saturated and trans - fats) with high calorie density can be considered a fattening food, for example, Indian traditional sweets, bakery foods, pastries, burgers, pizza, …
10 Most Fattening Foods in the World Boston.com
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You might think that the United States, with its supersized portions, absurdly high obesity rate, and uniquely American innovations like the Doritos Locos Taco, is home to the world’s most
20 Fattiest Restaurant Meals in America Eat This Not That
Eatthis.com DA: 15 PA: 27 MOZ Rank: 47
- Just when you thought the cheesecake was the fattiest food item on the menu at the Cheesecake Factory, they offer a meal such as this
- The sandwich packs 145 grams of total fat, 65 grams of which is pure saturated fat
- Sorry buddy, but this one may take a …
Unhealthy Foods: The 10 Fattiest Restaurant Meals in
Shape.com DA: 13 PA: 50 MOZ Rank: 69
- Too much of fat can be a bad thing
- These are the 10 fattiest restaurant foods in America
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What is the fattiest food on Earth
Trekbbs.com DA: 15 PA: 50 MOZ Rank: 72
- Real pemmican is very high in fat
- It's typically about 50% fat mixed with 50% dried meat (pounded into a powder) with a few berries thrown in
- Beef tallow is pretty commonly used these days, which is 1849 calories per cup (205 grams - with 205 grams of fat).
7 Of The Most Disgusting Foods In The World
Healthprep.com DA: 14 PA: 50 MOZ Rank: 72
- If Dracula had a favorite food, blood pudding would be it
- Also known as black pudding, blood pudding is made from cooked animal blood and fillers such as potatoes, fat or grains
- It is typically served with fried eggs, tomatoes, bacon, sausage, potatoes, and toast
- Black pudding is a type of blood sausage that is common in Ireland.
Top 10 Worst Foods in the World Fox News
Foxnews.com DA: 15 PA: 39 MOZ Rank: 63
- This dislike is a purely subjective one
- Dende oil is the cooking medium for much of the fried food in the Bahia region of Brazil
- It is extracted from local palm trees, and the origins of its use
World food: 50 best dishes CNN Travel
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- Marbled fat gives each mouthful texture as the beef melts away, leaving a subtle but distinctly classic beef flavor
- It's a result of being born in a land where the world's most delicious food
10 Foods That Are Highly Fattening
Healthline.com DA: 18 PA: 36 MOZ Rank: 65
- That being said, certain foods are more problematic than others, including processed foods high in added fat, sugar, and salt
- Here’s a list of 10 foods …
The 10 fattiest foods you must never eat while dieting
The 10 fattiest foods you must never eat while dieting Affiliate Disclosure In compliance with the FTC guidelines, please assume the following about all links, posts, photos and other material on
Pictures: 50 Fattiest Foods Across the Nation
Traditional American fare? You make the call as you gaze your eyes over and whet your taste buds on what Health.com has presented as the 50 fattiest foods …
Top 20 Spiciest Foods In The World (Not Even Hardcore
Therecipe.com DA: 17 PA: 32 MOZ Rank: 63
- Top 20 Spiciest Foods In The World (Not Even Hardcore Foodies Can Handle) Have a cool glass of milk (and maybe a doctor’s direct contact information) at the ready before daring to try one of these
- By Erynn Ruiz Published Dec 01, 2018
- Share Share Tweet Email Comment.
Top 10 Fattest Countries In The World
- Kuwait has become king of the fattest countries in the world in recent years
- It is commonly said that their love for fast food has lead to the alarmingly high rates of …
Weird Food Gallery Disgusting Food 2021 Rough Guides
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Weird foods around the world: disgusting, gross or just simply different to what you know? The different ways we put our food together varies tremendously around the world while travelling, some of us will seize any opportunity to try new …
25 Fattening Foods You Should Never Eat Health.com
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- The processed food is too high in fat and sodium for the average 8-year-old’s daily recommended intakes
- One Fun Pack: 470 calories, 20g fat, 880mg sodium.
50 Fattiest Foods in the States Health.com
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- Health's state by state guide to the 50 Fattiest Foods in America
- Find out whether your home state has the fattiest, greasiest, most unhealthy foods in the U.S.
Top 100 Worst Foods in America [Infographic] – Fresh n' Lean
Freshnlean.com DA: 18 PA: 22 MOZ Rank: 59
- With our disclaimer out the way, now let’s establish some basic criteria for determining our worst foods for your body
- Those found on our unhealthy food list include 30% or more of the DV for the following markers (or contain 20% or more of at least two markers – trans fat …
100 Unhealthiest Foods On the Planet Eat This Not That
Eatthis.com DA: 15 PA: 34 MOZ Rank: 69
- This chocolate bar made the list of our unhealthiest foods in both 2017 and 2018, thanks to the fact that it blends fatty chocolate with salty pretzels, creating a saturated-fat-and-sugar knockout
- With 20 grams of sugar, you better leave this bar in the candy aisle.
Top 10 Fattest People In The World
A1facts.com DA: 11 PA: 36 MOZ Rank: 68
- Food is definitely one of those things that one just can’t say no to
- People love to try as many types of food as possible, from the Asian cuisines to the Western specialties
- Most of the time, food becomes the agent of unity as people gather during mealtimes or even converse over a cup of coffee.Junk foods are very popular to people of all ages – youngsters, teens, furthermore as adults.
5 Fattiest Fast Foods – Plus Surprisingly Fatty Picks
Fattiest food: Double quarter pounder with cheese (2.5g trans fat, 19g saturated fat, 42g total fat, 750 calories) Fattiest surprise: Many of the McFlurrys, McCafe shakes, frappes, and hot
18 of the Most Nutrient-Dense Foods in the World
- Last Updated on December 3, 2019 by Michael Joseph
- There are many important nutritional topics, but focusing on nutrient density is one of the best ways to achieve a healthy diet.
- This article examines some of the most nutrient-dense foods in the world
- Half of the foods listed are animal-based foods and half are plant-based, so there is something for everyone.
The Best Fast Food and Street Food Around The World
Sausages are a fast-food and street food dish I've seen eaten in many countries, the best known are hot dogs consisting of a sausage of the Frankfurt type or Viennese boiled or fried, served on a long bread and accompanied by dressings, this dish is identified as from the United States although the idea was imported from Germany.
The world’s most nutritious foods
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- The world’s most nutritious foods
- these are the 100 most nutritious foods: Pork fat is more unsaturated and healthier than lamb or beef fat.
10 Most Fattening Foods in American Restaurants
- But there still remain plenty of food items that are loaded in unhealthy fats, sodium and unnecessary hidden calories
- Here’s a list of the fattiest foods currently circulating our favorite restaurants and other businesses.
Top 10 healthiest foods in the world (And How to Eat Them
Goodnet.org DA: 15 PA: 50 MOZ Rank: 92
- Increasingly, shops and restaurants around the world are getting on the healthy eating bandwagon - making it easier for people to treat their bodies right
- This list of 10 of the healthiest foods in the world is just a beginning guide - a way to understand the essential vitamins and minerals the human body needs to stay functioning at its best.
The 33 Healthiest Foods in the World On The Table
- Though tofu is both popular and beneficial, tempeh deserves great recognition and is measured as one of the world’s healthiest foods
- Comparing an equivalent 100 gram serving, tofu supplies a mere one gram of protein while tempeh boasts with nine! Find more on the disparities between tempeh and tofu, along with benefits and uses of each, here.
World's 50 best foods: Reader's choice CNN Travel
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- The world's most delicious food is not Massaman curry, as we suggested, but a meaty, spicy, gingery dish from west Sumatra
11 Most Eaten Fast Foods in the World GetsMag
Getsmag.com DA: 11 PA: 39 MOZ Rank: 80
- That is why most part of fast food are, actually “fat food”
- The high calorific value of these fast food is the highest concern of the modern society
- People are more and more eaten “fat foods” but is not healthy eating
- In the last 40 years, the obesity rate increased over 27%
- The result is 2,1 billion of people are obese.
McWhaaaat: Top 25 Weirdest Fast Food Items From Around The
Therecipe.com DA: 17 PA: 43 MOZ Rank: 91
- Some of the best food in the world can be found in Italy and their culinary influence can be seen in many dishes across the world
- We have them to thank for pizza, panzerotti pasta, risotto, and many other delicious dishes
- It has over 2500 calories and is extremely high in fat and salt content
- Specifically, it has 144 grams of fat and 3
What The World’s Healthiest Diets Have In Common
Huffpost.com DA: 16 PA: 50 MOZ Rank: 98
Signature foods: Whole grain cereals like oats and rye local fruits and berries like rose hip, lingonberries and bilberries cruciferous and root vegetables like Brussels sprouts, broccoli, turnips, parsnips and beets rapeseed oil, vegetable-oil-based margarine and low-fat dairy like milk, fermented milk and cheese.Meats include beef, pork, lamb and reindeer, while seafood includes herring
The 13 Healthiest Foods In The World
Boldsky.com DA: 15 PA: 50 MOZ Rank: 98
- Right from improving digestion to enhancing your sex drive, walnuts are among the healthiest foods in the world
- They contain monosaturated fat that is extremely essential for the body
- Also, cardiovascular health is enhanced due to the rich presence of omega-3 fatty acids in walnuts.
The 10 Fattest Countries in the World
- The 10 Fattest Countries In The World
- 2014-11-28T16:52:00Z The letter F
- It indicates the ability to send an email
- high fat foods like fast food …
8 Healthiest Cuisines in the World
Spicesinc.com DA: 17 PA: 47 MOZ Rank: 99
- The Japanese only have 2% of the world's total population but consume 10% of all the fish eaten
- They prefer fatty fishes like fresh mackerel, salmon, and tuna
- They usually use white rice in their foods but you can substitute that with brown rice if you want your Japanese food …
10 Best Countries For Food: A Travel Guide for Foodies
- Mediterranean food, in general, is easily one of the best cuisines in the world, but the Greeks do it best I think
- From the amazing array of seafood meals to the Middle Eastern-inspired dishes like Gyros, Greek food is a culinary culmination of its neighbours and by mixing and melding the cultures, cuisines and ingredients, Greece has somehow
Top 10 Healthiest Foods In The World
- Date back to 10000 B.C the walnuts are the oldest known tree food in the world
- It mainly cultivates in U.S, France, Romania and China
- Walnut is a great healthy food and has numerous medicinal properties
- The walnuts contain three important omega 3 fatty acids – lenoleic acid, alpha-lenolenic acid and arachidonic acid.
The top 15 healthful foods: Pulses, vegetables, proteins
A lentil is a pulse that features prominently in many food cultures around the world, including those of Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, India, Bhutan, and Sri …
Top 10 Most Unhealthy Fast Food Chains In America
A recent report from 24/7 Wall St. identified the 10 least healthy fast-food restaurant chains in the U.S. Fast-food chains were evaluated using data from Nutritionix, a nutrition information database.
To determine which chains are the least healthy overall, 24/7 Wall St. compared menu items from the different chains against one another on the basis of saturated fat, trans fat, sodium, carbohydrate, sugar and calorie levels.
10. Burger King
Unhealthy breakfast and side items earn Restaurant Brands International Inc (NYSE: QSR)'s Burger King (and its 1,420-calorie Ultimate Breakfast Platter) the 10th spot on 24/7 Wall St.’s unhealthy restaurants list.
Over 75 percent of Checkers’ menu item meals have higher saturated fat levels than comparable meals at other fast-food chains.
While Chick-fil-A’s Grilled Chicken Sandwich is the healthiest meal selection across nearly every category of comparison, almost 45 percent of its side items have exceptionally high sugar content compared to the side items of other fast-food chains.
The Wendy's Co (NASDAQ: WEN)'s high-calorie Baconator hamburger contains almost half of the average adult’s daily value of calories and 115 percent of the recommended daily value of saturated fat.
6. Jack in the Box
Eight of the burgers on Jack in the Box Inc (NASDAQ: JACK)’s menu contain an entire day’s worth of saturated fat, and the Chicken Teriyaki Bowl on its lighter fare menu has more carbohydrates and sugar than 98 percent of the meal items at other fast-food chains.
The Wendy's Co makes its second appearance in the top 10 for its nearly 20 percent ownership stake in Arby's. All but one of Arby’s sandwiches ranked poorly in at least two of the six nutrition level categories, and one third of meal items on Arby’s menu—roast beef sandwiches included—contain trans fat.
The meal options at Quizno’s ranked the least healthy among all fast-food chains, with 21 of Quizno’s sandwiches containing over 1,000 calories.
Ninety percent of Whataburger’s side items contain more than the daily recommended value of at least one of the six nutrition categories examined by 24/7 Wall St., and over 50 percent of Whataburger’s meal items ranked in the top third among all fast-food chains for saturated fat.
Six of the breakfast sandwiches on Carl’s Jr.’s menu contain 6 grams of trans fat—a type of fat that is deemed unhealthy in any amount.
Nearly 50 percent of Sonic Corp (NASDAQ: SONC)’s menu items contain at least 1 gram of saturated fat, and 10 of Sonic’s hamburgers have more than 1,100 calories, making Sonic the least healthy fast-food chain on 24/7 Wall St.’s list.
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© 2015 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
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Boom in Chinese Firms Listing in the U.S. Comes to a Sudden Halt
(Bloomberg) -- At least three Chinese companies have put their plans to list in the U.S. on hold, heralding a slowdown in what’s been a record start to a year for initial public offerings by mainland and Hong Kong firms.A bike-sharing platform, a podcaster and a cloud computing firm are among popular Chinese corporates holding off plans for a U.S. float, put off by recent market declines, souring investor sentiment toward fast-growth companies and lackluster debuts by peers like Waterdrop Inc.Hello Inc., Ximalaya Inc. and Qiniu Ltd. are postponing plans to take orders from investors, even though the three had filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission well over two weeks ago. In the U.S., companies can kick off their roadshows two weeks after filing publicly and most typically stick to that timetable.“The recent broad market selloff, combined with the correction of the IPO market since the beginning of last month when some new issuers tanked during their debuts, may make the market conditions less predictable for newcomers who are ‘physically’ ready -- meaning they have cleared all regulatory hurdles for IPO -- to get out of the door,” said Stephanie Tang, head of private equity for Greater China at law firm Hogan Lovells. “Some participants may choose to monitor the market for more stable conditions.”The delays throw a wrench in a listings flood by Chinese and Hong Kong companies in the U.S. that already reached $7.1 billion year-to-date -- the fastest pace on record -- after booming in 2020. Demand for IPOs surged as a wave of global stimulus money, ultra-low interest rates and rallying stock markets lured investors despite Sino-American tensions and the continued risk of mainland stocks being kicked off U.S. exchanges.READ: Stock Market’s Million Little Dramas Come Down to a Supply GlutThe S&P 500 Index capped its biggest two-week slide since February on Friday amid mounting investor concern over inflation and its impact on tech and other growth stocks. China’s CSI 300 Index remains in a technical correction, having fallen more than 10% from a February peak, while the Nasdaq Golden Dragon China Index, which tracks Chinese companies listed in the U.S., has slumped 30% from its high that month.‘Less Predictable’Hello, which offers a bike-sharing platform plus electric scooters for sale, has delayed its planned launch and is still undecided on its prospective valuation given rising investor caution about new shares, Bloomberg News has reported. It had been planning to raise between $500 million and $1 billion in the offering, although the final number will depend on valuations, according to one person with knowledge of the matter.Online podcast and radio services startup Ximalaya and enterprise cloud services provider Qiniu have put their listings on hold after beginning to gauge investor interest at the end of April, people with knowledge of the matter said, asking not to be identified as the information isn’t public.The sounding out of investors, or pre-marketing process, generally comes after filing for an IPO and before formal order-taking in a roadshow. Hello declined to comment while Qiniu didn’t immediately respond to an emailed request for comment. Ximalaya’s IPO process is ongoing and the company will seek public listing at an appropriate time depending on market conditions, it said in response to questions.Weak DebutsThe poor performance of recent Chinese debutants has also sapped investor confidence. Insurance tech firm Waterdrop has plunged 40% from its offer price since going public earlier this month. Onion Global Ltd., a lifestyle brand platform, has fallen about 9% below its IPO price.In fact, almost 59% or specifically 20 of the 34 Chinese firms that have listed in the U.S. this year are under water, data compiled by Bloomberg show, among them the two largest IPOs -- e-cigarette maker RLX Technology Inc. and online Q&A site Zhihu Inc. Of the ones that listed in 2020, just 40% are trading below their IPO prices.The recent volatility in global markets has spooked U.S. companies as well. They have also been delaying floats or facing weak debuts.For some, the current challenges faced by Chinese listing hopefuls are likely to be transitory, with the hotly-anticipated IPO of ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing Inc., which has filed confidentially for a multibillion-dollar offering, set to prove the real test of investor appetite for the China story.“There is a natural strong growth in China which international investors will still want to invest in over the longer term,” said Gary Dugan, chief executive officer at the Global CIO Office in Singapore.More stories like this are available on bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
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China Braces for $1.3 Trillion Maturity Wall as Defaults Surge
(Bloomberg) -- Even by the standards of a record-breaking global credit binge, China’s corporate bond tab stands out: $1.3 trillion of domestic debt payable in the next 12 months.That’s 30% more than what U.S. companies owe, 63% more than in all of Europe and enough money to buy Tesla Inc. twice over. What’s more, it’s all coming due at a time when Chinese borrowers are defaulting on onshore debt at an unprecedented pace.The combination has investors bracing for another turbulent stretch for the world’s second-largest credit market. It’s also underscoring the challenge for Chinese authorities as they work toward two conflicting goals: reducing moral hazard by allowing more defaults, and turning the domestic bond market into a more reliable source of long-term funding.While average corporate bond maturities have increased in the U.S., Europe and Japan in recent years, they’re getting shorter in China as defaults prompt investors to reduce risk. Domestic Chinese bonds issued in the first quarter had an average tenor of 3.02 years, down from 3.22 years for all of last year and on course for the shortest annual average since Fitch Ratings began compiling the data in 2016.“As credit risk increases, everyone wants to limit their exposure by investing in shorter maturities only,” said Iris Pang, chief economist for Greater China at ING Bank NV. “Issuers also want to sell shorter-dated bonds because as defaults rise, longer-dated bonds have even higher borrowing costs.”The move toward shorter maturities has coincided with a Chinese government campaign to instill more discipline in local credit markets, which have long been underpinned by implicit state guarantees. Investors are increasingly rethinking the widely held assumption that authorities will backstop big borrowers amid a string of missed payments by state-owned companies and a selloff in bonds issued by China Huarong Asset Management Co.The country’s onshore defaults have swelled from negligible levels in 2016 to exceed 100 billion yuan ($15.5 billion) for four straight years. That milestone was reached again last month, putting defaults on track for another record annual high.The resulting preference for shorter-dated bonds has exacerbated one of China’s structural challenges: a dearth of long-term institutional money. Even before authorities began allowing more defaults, short-term investments including banks’ wealth management products played an outsized role.Social security funds and insurance firms are the main providers of long-term funding in China, but their presence in the bond market is limited, said Wu Zhaoyin, chief strategist at AVIC Trust Co., a financial firm. “It’s difficult to sell long-dated bonds in China because there is a lack of long-term capital,” Wu said.Chinese authorities have been taking steps to attract long-term investors, including foreign pension funds and university endowments. The government has in recent years scrapped some investment quotas and dismantled foreign ownership limits for life insurers, brokerages and fund managers.But even if those efforts gain traction, it’s not clear Chinese companies will embrace longer maturities. Many prefer selling short-dated bonds because they lack long-term capital management plans, according to Shen Meng, director at Chanson & Co., a Beijing-based boutique investment bank. That applies even for state-owned enterprises, whose senior managers typically get reshuffled by the government every three to five years, Shen said.The upshot is that China’s domestic credit market faces a near constant cycle of refinancing and repayment risk, which threatens to exacerbate volatility as defaults rise. A similar dynamic is also playing out in the offshore market, where maturities total $167 billion over the next 12 months.For ING’s Pang, the cycle is unlikely to change anytime soon. “It may last for another decade in China,” she said.More stories like this are available on bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
China crypto mining business hit by Beijing crackdown, bitcoin tumbles
SHANGHAI (Reuters) -Cryptocurrency miners, including HashCow and BTC.TOP, have halted all or part of their China operations after Beijing intensified a crackdown on bitcoin mining and trading, hammering digital currencies amid heightened global regulatory scrutiny. It was the first time China's cabinet has targeted virtual currency mining, a sizable business in the world's second-biggest economy that some estimates say accounts for as much as 70% of the global crypto supply. Cryptocurrency exchange Huobi on Monday suspended both crypto-mining and some trading services to new clients from mainland China, adding it will instead focus on overseas businesses.
Battered Bitcoin claws back losses as oil rallies on recovery hopes
Consumer-related stocks helped tip London markets into the green, following two weeks of drops, helped by a weekend of Covid restrictions being eased. “It seems investors have had a good weekend and have realised how many other people have also been enjoying newly reinstated opportunities,” said Danni Hewson, financial analyst at AJ Bell. “From cinemas to restaurants, shops to bingo halls, real life has translated into share gains for companies like Primark owner Premier Foods, The Restaurant Group and the Rank Group.” The domestically-focused FTSE 250 index added 84.31 points to close at 22,483. Gambling company Rank Group led the leaderboard, rising 14.2p to 196.2p, followed by Mr Kipling’s parent Premier Foods, which gained 6p to 107.6p. Joining them in the top 10 was Frankie & Benny’s owner The Restaurant Group, which added 6.4p to 128.4p, as well as pub chain Wetherspoon. Similar types of blue-chip companies helped push the FTSE 100 to close in positive territory, though gains were tempered by miners which mostly fell after China’s commodity price warnings. Meanwhile, stocks globally struggled for momentum as investors awaited key US inflation readings for guidance on monetary policy. London’s benchmark FTSE 100 edged up 33.54 points to close at 7,051.59 Catering company Compass Group led the charge, up by 43p at £15.82. Gambling firms Entain and Flutter Entertainment also finished in the top 10, gaining 35.5p to £16.14 and 270p to £13.20 respectively. They were followed by hotel owners Intercontinental Hotels Group and Whitbread, which rose 98p to £49.22 and 59p to £31.50, respectively. Heavyweight oil stocks also performed well as oil prices extended Friday’s rally and climbed higher after Iran said that gaps remain in negotiations aimed at reaching a deal to end US sanctions on its crude. Iran said there are still differences around the timing of when countries will return to compliance with the original 2015 nuclear agreement, allaying some concern about a rapid ramp-up in the Persian Gulf nation’s output. While the market is anticipating the Islamic Republic’s supply will pick up again by late summer, the demand recovery will be strong enough to absorb it, according to Goldman Sachs. The bank expects Brent futures to hit $80 (£57) a barrel in the next few months. Royal Dutch Shell added 10.4p to £13.50, while BP rose 4.2p to 316.4p. Dominating the bottom of the rankings and dragging on the index, however, were miners including Fresnillo, Antofagasta, BHP and Evraz. RBC also cut its price target on Chilean miner Antofagasta. Elsewhere among companies, shares of FTSE 250 software firm Kainos fell 25p to £13.87 despite saying its annual pre-tax profit more than doubled in an eleventh consecutive year of growth, surging 124pc to £57.1m in the year through March. Revenue grew by 31pc to £234.7m while booking rose 6pc.
PG&E to Sell San Francisco Headquarters for $800 Million
(Bloomberg) -- PG&E Corp. has reached a deal to sell its iconic San Francisco headquarters to real estate joint-venture Hines Atlas for $800 million as the utility giant moves to cut costs after it emerged from bankruptcy last year.PG&E, which plans to move to Oakland next year, needs approval from state regulators to sell the 1.7 million-square-foot (158,000-square-meter) complex, which includes 77 Beale Street and 245 Market Street, according to a statement Monday.The sale comes as office markets around the globe have been battered by the coronavirus pandemic. One broker estimated in 2019 that PG&E’s headquarters could bring in more than $1 billion. The utility giant is one of the most high-profile companies to leave San Francisco for Oakland, a less expensive city located across San Francisco Bay.Nearly a dozen bids were submitted for the property, according to a person familiar with the matter. That level of interest suggests real estate investors are willing to bet on a rebound for office demand in the city.“It’s a fantastic bet on San Francisco,” said J.D. Lumpkin, executive managing director at commercial real estate brokerage Cushman & Wakefield in San Francisco, who wasn’t involved in the deal. “While San Francisco has taken its lumps through Covid, perhaps more than other cities, there’s a lot of evidence that we will rebound over the next two or three years.”PG&E didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment about the bids. The company’s shares rose as much as 2.1% Monday.Unlike some other large property sales in San Francisco since the pandemic, the complex will require a substantial amount of renovation. It also doesn’t have a tenant in place, so the buyers will have to fill it in a few years once the redevelopment is finished.Also See: KKR Said to Buy $1.08 Billion San Francisco Dropbox OfficesSan Francisco’s overall office vacancy rate in the first quarter shattered the previous record high hit during the dot-com bust at the turn of the century, according to CBRE Group Inc. That’s pushed rent down and weighed on the value of buildings.The sale price is about $200 million less than expected, Citigroup Inc. utility analyst Ryan Levine wrote in a research note Monday. That raises the prospect that PG&E may need to raise equity this year, he said.Offset BillsPG&E intends to distribute about $400 million from its gain on the sale to customers over five years to offset bill increases as it invests in safety and operational improvements. In an added benefit, most PG&E workers will have shorter commutes to their new office, the company said.CBRE’s San Francisco Capital Markets team brokered the deal.PG&E filed for bankruptcy in early 2019 after collapsing under liabilities from wildfires sparked by its equipment. Though the company exited Chapter 11 last year, it remains burdened by about $42 billion of debt, raising concerns about its financial durability and ability to make the investments required to fire-proof its grid.Hines is one of the biggest private real estate investors and managers in the world, according to its website. Hines Atlas is a joint venture between Hines and another investor, a Hines spokesman said. He declined to name the other investor.(Adds details of bid beginning in fourth paragraph.)More stories like this are available on bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
U.S. Treasury deputy chief sees G7 backing for 15%-plus global minimum tax
WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. Treasury Deputy Secretary Wally Adeyemo said he expects strong backing from G7 peers for Washington's proposed 15%-plus global minimum corporate tax, which should help solidify support in the U.S. Congress for domestic corporate tax legislation. "My sense is that you're going to see a lot of unified support amongst the G7 moving forward," Adeyemo told Reuters on Monday after France, Germany, Italy and Japan made positive comments about the Treasury's proposal.
IMF Official: ‘A World With More Than One Reserve Currency Is a More Stable World’
Tommaso Mancini-Griffoli said the world would be more stable if it diversified from the dollar, but also that crypto was too young and volatile to be a global reserve.
First Warning Sign in Global Commodity Boom Flashes in China
(Bloomberg) -- One pillar of this year’s blistering commodities rally -- Chinese demand -- may be teetering.Beijing aced its economic recovery from the pandemic largely via an expansion in credit and a state-aided construction boom that sucked in raw materials from across the planet. Already the world’s biggest consumer, China spent $150 billion on crude oil, iron ore and copper ore alone in the first four months of 2021. Resurgent demand and rising prices mean that’s $36 billion more than the same period last year.With global commodities rising to record highs, Chinese government officials are trying to temper prices and reduce some of the speculative froth that’s driven markets. Wary of inflating asset bubbles, the People’s Bank of China has also been restricting the flow of money to the economy since last year, albeit gradually to avoid derailing growth. At the same time, funding for infrastructure projects has shown signs of slowing.Economic data for April suggest that both China’s economic expansion and its credit impulse -- new credit as a percentage of GDP -- may already have crested, putting the rally on a precarious footing. The most obvious impact of China’s deleveraging would fall on those metals keyed to real estate and infrastructure spending, from copper and aluminum, to steel and its main ingredient, iron ore.“Credit is a major driver for commodity prices, and we reckon prices peak when credit peaks,” said Alison Li, co-head of base metals research at Mysteel in Shanghai. “That refers to global credit, but Chinese credit accounts for a big part of it, especially when it comes to infrastructure and property investment.”But the impact of China’s credit pullback could ripple far and wide, threatening the rally in global oil prices and even China’s crop markets. And while tighter money supply hasn’t stopped many metals hitting eye-popping levels in recent weeks, some, like copper, are already seeing consumers shying away from higher prices.“The slowdown in credit will have a negative impact on China’s demand for commodities,” said Hao Zhou, senior emerging markets economist at Commerzbank AG. “So far, property and infrastructure investments haven’t shown an obvious deceleration. But they are likely to trend lower in the second half of this year.”A lag between the withdrawal of credit and stimulus from the economy and its impact on China’s raw material purchases may mean that markets haven’t yet peaked. However, its companies may eventually soften imports due to tighter credit conditions, which means the direction of the global commodity market will hinge on how much the recovery in economies including the U.S. and Europe can continue to drive prices higher.Some sectors have seen policy push an expansion in capacity, such as Beijing’s move to grow the country’s crude oil refining and copper smelting industries. Purchases of the materials needed for production in those sectors may continue to see gains although at a slower pace.One example of slowing purchases is likely to be in refined copper, said Mysteel’s Li. The premium paid for the metal at the port of Yangshan has already hit a four-year low in a sign of waning demand, and imports are likely to fall this year, she said.At the same time, the rally in copper prices probably still has a few months to run, according to a recent note from Citigroup Inc., citing the lag between peak credit and peak demand. From around $9,850 a ton now, the bank expects copper to reach $12,200 by September.It’s a dynamic that’s also playing out in ferrous metals markets.“We’re still at an early phase of tightening in terms of money reaching projects,” said Tomas Gutierrez, an analyst at Kallanish Commodities Ltd. “Iron ore demand reacts with a lag of several months to tightening. Steel demand is still around record highs on the back of the economic recovery and ongoing investments, but is likely to pull back slightly by the end of the year.”For agriculture, credit tightening may only affect China’s soaring crop imports around the margins, said Ma Wenfeng, an analyst at Beijing Orient Agribusiness Consultant Co. Less cash in the system could soften domestic prices by curbing speculation, which may in turn reduce the small proportion of imports handled by private firms, he said.The wider trend is for China’s state-owned giants to keep importing grains to cover the nation’s domestic shortfall, to replenish state reserves and to meet trade deal obligations with the U.S.No DisasterMore broadly, Beijing’s policy tightening doesn’t spell disaster for commodities bulls. For one, the authorities are unlikely to accelerate deleveraging from this point, according the latest comments from the State Council, China’s cabinet.“Internal guidance from our macro department is that the country won’t tighten credit too much -- they just won’t loosen further,” said Harry Jiang, head of trading and research at Yonggang Resouces, a commodity trader in Shanghai. “We don’t have many concerns over credit tightening.”And in any case, raw materials markets are no longer almost entirely in thrall to Chinese demand.“In the past, the inflection point of industrial metal prices often coincides with that of China’s credit cycle,” said Larry Hu, chief China economist at Macquarie Group Ltd. “But that doesn’t mean it will be like that this time too, because the U.S. has unleashed much larger stimulus than China, and its demand is very strong.”Hu also pointed to caution among China’s leaders, who probably don’t want to risk choking off their much-admired recovery by sharp swings in policy.“I expect China’s property investment will slow down, but not by too much,” he said. “Infrastructure investment hasn’t changed too much in the past few years, and won’t this year either.”Additionally, China has been pumping up consumer spending as a lever for growth, and isn’t as reliant on infrastructure and property investment as it used to be, said Bruce Pang, head of macro and strategy research at China Renaissance Securities Hong Kong. The disruption to global commodities supply because of the pandemic is also a new factor that can support prices, he said.Other policy priorities, such as cutting steel production to make inroads on China’s climate pledges, or boosting the supply of energy products, whether domestically or via purchases from overseas, are other complicating factors when it comes to assessing import demand and prices for specific commodities, according to analysts.(Updates copper price in 11th paragraph.)More stories like this are available on bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Gold Price Futures (GC) Technical Analysis – Big Challenge for Gold Bulls at $1899.20 Retracement Level
The direction of the August Comex gold futures market on Monday is likely to be determined by trader reaction to the major 50% level at $1899.20.
Exclusive-HSBC CEO says Bitcoin not for us
LONDON (Reuters) -HSBC has no plans to launch a cryptocurrency trading desk or offer the digital coins as an investment to customers, because they are too volatile and lack transparency, its Chief Executive Noel Quinn told Reuters. Europe's largest bank's stance on cryptocurrencies comes as the world's biggest and best-known, Bitcoin, has tumbled nearly 50% from the year's high, after China cracked down on mining the currency and prominent advocate Elon Musk tempered his support. It marks it out against rivals such as Goldman Sachs, which Reuters in March reported had restarted its cryptocurrency trading desk, and UBS which other media said was exploring ways to offer the currencies as an investment product.
Stock market news live updates: Stock futures open slightly higher, extending gains as tech stocks rebounded
Stock futures opened slightly higher Monday evening following a rally during the regular trading day, with technology stocks outperforming as concerns over rising inflation were at least temporarily pushed to the side.
The term junk food dates back at least to the early 1950s, although its coinage has been credited to Michael F. Jacobson of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, in 1972.  In 1952, the phrase appeared in a headline in the Lima, Ohio, News, "'Junk Foods' Cause Serious Malnutrition", over a reprint of a 1948 article from the Ogden, Utah, Standard-Examiner, originally titled, "Dr. Brady’s Health Column: More Junk Than Food". In the article, Dr. Brady writes, "What Mrs. H calls 'junk' I call cheat food. That is anything made principally of (1) white flour and or (2) refined white sugar or syrup. For example, white bread, crackers, cake, candy, ice cream soda, chocolate malted, sundaes, sweetened carbonated beverages."  The term cheat food can be traced back in newspaper mentions to at least 1916. 
In Andrew F. Smith's Encyclopedia of Junk Food and Fast Food, junk food is defined as "those commercial products, including candy, bakery goods, ice cream, salty snacks and soft drinks, which have little or no nutritional value but do have plenty of calories, salt, and fats. While not all fast foods are junk foods, most are. Fast foods are ready-to-eat foods served promptly after ordering. Some fast foods are high in calories and low in nutritional value, while other fast foods, such as salads, may be low in calories and high in nutritional value." 
Junk food provides empty calories, supplying little or none of the protein, vitamins, or minerals required for a nutritious diet.  Many foods, such as hamburgers, pizza, and tacos, can be considered either healthy or junk food, depending on their ingredients and preparation methods.  The more highly processed items usually fall under the junk food category,  including breakfast cereals that are mostly sugar or high fructose corn syrup and white flour or milled corn. 
The United Kingdom's Advertising Standards Authority, the self-regulatory agency for the UK ad industry, uses nutrient profiling to define junk food. Foods are scored for "A" nutrients (energy, saturated fat, total sugar and sodium) and "C" nutrients (fruit, vegetable and nut content, fiber and protein). The difference between A and C scores determines whether a food or beverage is categorized as HFSS (high in fat, salt and sugar a term synonymous with junk food).   
In Panic Nation: Unpicking the Myths We're Told About Food and Health, the junk food label is described as nutritionally meaningless: food is food, and if there is zero nutritional value, then it isn't a food.  Co-editor Vincent Marks explains, "To label a food as 'junk' is just another way of saying, 'I disapprove of it.' There are bad diets - that is, bad mixtures and quantities of food - but there are no 'bad foods' except those that have become bad through contamination or deterioration." 
According to an article in the New York Times, "Let Us Now Praise the Great Men of Junk Food", "The history of junk food is a largely American tale: It has been around for hundreds of years, in many parts of the world, but no one has done a better job inventing so many varieties of it, branding it, mass-producing it, making people rich off it and, of course, eating it."  Cracker Jack, the candy-coated popcorn-and-peanuts confection, is credited as the first popular name-brand junk food it was created in Chicago, registered in 1896, and became the best-selling candy in the world 20 years later.  
Junk food in its various forms is extremely popular, and an integral part of modern popular culture. In the US, annual fast food sales are in the area of $160 billion,  compared to supermarket sales of $620 billion  (a figure which also includes junk food in the form of convenience foods, snack foods, and candy). In 1976, "Junk Food Junkie", a US Top 10 pop song, described a junk food addict who pretends to follow a healthy diet by day, while at night gorges on Hostess Twinkies and Fritos corn chips, McDonald's and KFC.  Thirty-six years later, Time placed the Twinkie at #1 in an article titled, "Top 10 Iconic Junk Foods": "Not only. a mainstay on our supermarket shelves and in our bellies, they've been a staple in our popular culture and, above all, in our hearts. Often criticized for its lack of any nutritional value whatsoever, the Twinkie has managed to persevere as a cultural and gastronomical icon." 
America also celebrates an annual National Junk Food Day on July 21. Origins are unclear it is one of around 175 US food and drink days, most created by "people who want to sell more food", at times aided by elected officials at the request of a trade association or commodity group.  "In honor of the day," Time in 2014 published, "5 Crazy Junk Food Combinations". Headlines from other national and local media coverage include: "Celebrate National Junk Food Day With… Beer-Flavored Oreos?" (MTV)  "National Junk Food Day: Pick your favorite unhealthy treats in this poll" (Baltimore)  "Celebrities' favorite junk food" (Los Angeles)  "A Nutritionist's Guide to National Junk Food Day" with "Rules for Splurging" (Huffington Post)  and "It's National Junk Food Day: Got snacks?" (Kansas City). 
As for the source of junk food's appeal, there is no definitive scientific answer, both physiological and psychological factors are cited. Food manufacturers spend billions of dollars on research and development to create flavor profiles that trigger the human affinity for sugar, salt, and fat. Consumption results in pleasurable, likely addictive, effects in the brain. At the same time, massive marketing efforts are deployed, creating powerful brand loyalties that studies have shown can trump taste. 
It is well-established that the poor eat more junk food overall than the more affluent, but the reasons for this are not clear.  Few studies have focused on variations in food perception according to socio-economic status (SES) some studies that have differentiated based on SES suggest that the economically challenged don't perceive healthy food much differently than any other segment of the population.  Recent research into scarcity, combining behavioral science and economics, suggests that, faced with extreme economic uncertainty, where even the next meal may not be a sure thing, judgment is impaired and the drive is to the instant gratification of junk food, rather than to making the necessary investment in the longer-term benefits of a healthier diet.  
When junk food is consumed very often, the excess fat, simple carbohydrates, and processed sugar found in junk food contributes to an increased risk of obesity, cardiovascular disease, and many other chronic health conditions.  A case study on consumption of fast foods in Ghana suggested a direct correlation between consumption of junk food and obesity rates. The report asserts that obesity resulted in related complex health concerns such as an upsurge in the rate of heart attacks.  Studies reveal that as early as the age of 30, arteries could begin clogging and lay the groundwork for future heart attacks.  Consumers also tend to eat too much in one sitting,  and those who have satisfied their appetite with junk food are less likely to eat healthy foods like fruit or vegetables. 
Testing on rats has indicated negative effects of junk food that may manifest likewise in people. A Scripps Research Institute study in 2008 suggested that junk food consumption alters brain activity in a manner similar to addictive drugs like cocaine and heroin. After many weeks with unlimited access to junk food, the pleasure centers of rat brains became desensitized, requiring more food for pleasure after the junk food was taken away and replaced with a healthy diet, the rats starved for two weeks instead of eating nutritious fare.   A 2007 study in the British Journal of Nutrition found that female rats who eat junk food during pregnancy increased the likelihood of unhealthy eating habits in their offspring. 
Other research has been done on the impact of sugary foods on emotional health in humans, and has suggested that consumption of junk food can negatively impact energy levels and emotional well-being. 
In a study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the frequency of consumption of 57 foods/drinks of 4000 children at the age of four and a half were collected by maternal report. At age seven, the 4000 children were given the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ), with five scales: hyperactivity, conduct problems, peer problems, emotional symptoms and pro-social behavior. A one standard deviation increase in junk food was then linked to excessive hyperactivity in 33% of the subjects, leading to the conclusion that children consuming excess junk food at the age of seven are more likely to be in the top third of the hyperactivity scale. There was no significant correlation between junk food and the other scales. 
A number of countries have taken, or are considering, various forms of legislative action to curb junk food consumption. In 2014, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to health, Anand Grover, released his report, "Unhealthy foods, non-communicable diseases and the right to health", and called for governments to "take measures, such as developing food and nutrition guidelines for healthy diets, regulating marketing and advertising of junk food, adopting consumer-friendly labeling of food products, and establishing accountability mechanisms for violations of the right to health." 
An early, high-profile and controversial attempt to identify and curb junk food in the American diet was undertaken by the McGovern Committee (United States Senate Select Committee on Nutrition and Human Needs, chaired by Senator George McGovern) between 1968 and 1977. Initially formed to investigate malnutrition and hunger in the US, the committee's scope progressively expanded to include environmental conditions that affected eating habits, such as urban decay,  then focused on the diet and nutritional habits of the American public. The committee took issue with the use of salt, sugar and fat in processed foods, noted problems with overeating and the high percentage of ads for junk food on TV, and stated that bad eating habits could be as deadly as smoking. The findings were heavily criticized and rebutted from many directions, including the food industry, the American Medical Association, and within the committee itself. In 1977, the committee issued public guidelines under the title, Dietary Goals for the United States, which became the predecessor to Dietary Guidelines for Americans, published every five years beginning in 1980 by the US Department of Health and Human Services.  
In an attempt to reduce junk food consumption through price control, sin taxes have been implemented. Targeting saturated fat consumption, Denmark introduced the world's first fat-food tax in October, 2011, by imposing a surcharge on all foods, including those made from natural ingredients, that contain more than 2.3 percent saturated fat, an unpopular measure that lasted a little over a year.    Hungary has imposed taxes on foods and beverages high in added sugar, fat, and salt.  Norway taxes refined sugar, and Mexico has various excises on unhealthy food.  On April 1, 2015, the first fat tax in the US, the Navajo Nation's Healthy Diné Nation Act of 2014, mandating a 2% junk food tax, came into effect, covering the 27,000 sq mi (70,000 km 2 ) Navajo reservation the Act targeted problems with obesity and diabetes among the Navajo population. 
Restricting advertising to children Edit
Junk food that is targeted at children is a contentious issue. In "The Impact of Advertising on Childhood obesity", the American Psychological Association reports: "Research has found strong associations between increases in advertising for non-nutritious foods and rates of childhood obesity."  The World Health Organization recommends that governments take action to limit children's exposure to food marketing, stating, "Many advertisements promote foods high in fats, sugar and salt, consumption of which should be limited as part of a healthy diet. . Food advertising and other forms of marketing have been shown to influence children’s food preferences, purchasing behaviour and overall dietary behaviour. Marketing has also been associated with an increased risk of overweight and obesity in children. The habits children develop early in life may encourage them to adopt unhealthy dietary practices which persist into adulthood, increasing the likelihood of overweight, obesity and associated health problems such as diabetes and cardiovascular diseases." 
In the UK, efforts to increasingly limit or eliminate advertising of foods high in sugar, salt or fat at any time when children may be viewing are ongoing.  The UK government has been criticized for failing to do enough to stop advertising and promotion of junk food aimed at children.  A UK parliamentary select committee recommended that cartoon characters advertising unhealthy food to children should be banned, supermarkets should have to remove unhealthy sweets and snacks from ends of aisles and checkout areas, local authorities should be able to limit the number of fast food outlets in their area, brands associated with unhealthy foods should be banned from sponsoring sports clubs, youth leagues and tournaments, and social media like Facebook should cut down junk food advertising to children—all are currently just recommendations. 
In Australia, a Wollongong University study in 2015 showed that junk food sponsors were mentioned over 1,000 times in a single Australian cricket match broadcast, which included ads, and branding worn on players' uniforms and on the scoreboard and pitch. A coalition of Australian obesity, cancer and diabetes organizations called on Cricket Australia, the sport's governing body, to "phase out sponsorships with unhealthy brands", emphasizing that cricket is a "healthy, family-oriented sport" with children in the audience. 
Restricting sales to minors Edit
Several states in Mexico banned sales of junk food to minors, starting in August 2020. 
This Is What 2,000 Calories A Day Actually Looks Like
Ever wondered what the recommended daily energy intake looks like in a day? And not the social media recommended diet of 500 calories' worth of fruit and acai bowls. A realistic, balanced, healthy amount of energy in a whole day.
In Australia, the benchmark figure for an adult's average daily energy intake is 8,700 kilojoules, or 2,000 calories.
But that's just a bunch of numbers to many of us. To help us understand what 2,000 calories of food actually looks like in one day, The Huffington Post Australia spoke to two dieticians.
"According to Food Standards Australia New Zealand, we eat on average around 8,700 kilojoules a day. This figure is widely used as a benchmark as the basis of food labels, such as the 'Percent Daily Intake' values," dietitian Robbie Clark told HuffPost Australia.
Although used as a guide, the amount of energy we need varies between individuals and depends on our age, height, metabolism, weight, exercise activity and more.
"8,700 kilojoules has been defined as the average daily energy requirement for Australian adults. Obviously this is just an estimate as, for example, taller people, men and people who do more activity have greater needs than others," accredited practising dietitian, Jemma O'Hanlon, told HuffPost Australia.
"It's a little like body mass index (BMI) being an estimate of how healthy your weight is. It's only an estimate and is not meant to be applied to the individual person."
"The actual number of kilojoules you require will vary depending on your age, gender, life stage (if you're growing or are pregnant as this requires more energy), weight, height, disease state, how physically active you are and what type of activity you engage in," Clark added.
To find out how much energy you need each day, use this calculator as a guide.
Regardless of how many kilojoules or calories you need, it's important we get our energy from a healthy, varied diet. Despite what we believe, the calories in a pizza are not the same as calories from a healthy stir fry.
Unhealthy food is unhealthy food, no matter how many calories it has. Calories from nutrient-dense foods versus nutritionally-poor foods will have different effects on the body.
"Firstly, not all calories are created equal. This is a very common misconception -- that a calorie from fruit is the same as a calorie in pizza," Clark said.
"This may be true when they're on the plate since all 'calories' have the same amount of energy. However, the calories on paper are not necessarily the calories we actually receive due to the human body being a highly complex biochemical system with elaborate processes that regulate energy balance."
Furthermore, the calories in fat, protein and carbohydrates (the three macronutrients) have a different biological influence on satiety, metabolic rate, brain activity, blood sugar and the way our body stores fat.
"Secondly, unhealthy food is unhealthy food, no matter how many calories it has. Calories from nutrient-dense foods versus nutritionally-poor foods (for example processed or refined carbs) will have different effects on the body," Clark explained.
"Healthy, nutrient-dense foods will keep hunger at bay, help maintain stable blood glucose levels, reduce cravings, and allow your brain to signal to your stomach that it's full. Nutrient-poor foods will have the opposite effect, causing hormonal dysfunction, spiking insulin levels, increasing cravings, suppressing satiety signals and encouraging overeating."
O'Hanlon agrees, saying it's important we focus on the bigger picture when it comes to our diets, and to not get too caught up in counting calories.
"All kilojoules certainly aren't made equal. We could eat two Dominos ham and cheese pizzas and hit out daily target of 8,700 kilojoules or we could eat 20 Tim Tams and have the same result, but this doesn't make up a nutritionally balanced diet," O'Hanlon said.
"It doesn't give us the vitamins and minerals that our bodies need every day, nor does it provide the right balance of carbohydrates, proteins and good fats.
"[Counting calories] is such an odd an unnatural way of eating. It would be very hard to maintain the social enjoyment of eating if the focus was purely on kilojoules."
However tasty junk foods are, constantly eating this way could be a recipe for ill health.
"Vitamin and mineral deficiencies can also cause us to get sick. For example, if we're not getting enough iron, we can feel tired and lethargic all the time, and are more likely to catch a cold," O'Hanlon said.
By eating a variety of nutritious whole foods -- such as whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables and lean protein -- it helps your body function at its best.
"To put it simply, it's important to eat enough food so you are meeting your recommended dietary intake of nutrients to sustain good health," Clark said. "If you're not consuming enough calories or lack variety in your diet, you will be at risk of malnutrition and possible nutrient deficiencies."
"Our bodies are well conditioned vehicles, but we need to provide them with the right type and amount of fuel to allow them to function at their best," O'Hanlon said.
"If we only put half a tankful in, we're not going to be able to get very far. And there's no point in overfilling the car, because it's made to hold a certain amount."
Here's what 2,000 calories of food look like in one day for a range of different diets.
Mini Panamanian Beef Empanadas
In a food processor, pulse the flour with the sugar and salt. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Beat the eggs with the wine and vinegar and drizzle over the flour mixture. Pulse until the dough just comes together. On a lightly floured work surface, gently knead the dough until smooth. Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
In a medium skillet, heat the oil. Add the achiote seeds and cook over moderately high heat until the seeds darken and the oil is orange, about 1 minute. Discard the seeds. Add the ground beef to the skillet and cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, until no pink remains, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic, onion and bell pepper and cook over moderate heat until the onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato, tomato paste and chicken stock and simmer over moderate heat until the liquid has nearly evaporated, about 3 minutes. Stir in the cilantro and season with salt and pepper. Let cool.
On a generously floured work surface, roll out the dough 1/8 inch thick. With a 3-inch round biscuit cutter, stamp out as many rounds as possible (you should have about 24). Reroll the dough scraps and stamp out additional rounds if possible. Brush the excess flour off the rounds. Working with 1 round at a time and keeping the rest covered with plastic wrap, form the empanadas: Spoon 2 teaspoons of the filling on one side of the dough round. Fold the dough over to enclose the filling and crimp the edges with a fork to seal. Cover with plastic wrap while you form the remaining empanadas.
Preheat the oven to 350°. In a deep skillet, heat 1/2 inch of oil to 350°. Fry 4 empanadas at a time, turning once, until browned and crisp, 2 minutes. Drain on paper towels and transfer to a baking sheet. When all of the empanadas have been fried, reheat them in the oven and serve.
What 2,000 Calories Looks Like
Editor’s note: This article was first published in 2014. Although we cannot guarantee all the restaurants mentioned are offering exactly the same dishes, we believe this will provide guidance in estimating calorie counts when eating out.
Even as restaurants talk about smaller portions, they continue to serve a full day's worth of calories in a single meal — or even a single dish.
Editor’s note: This article was first published in 2014. Although we cannot guarantee all the restaurants mentioned are offering exactly the same dishes, we believe this will provide guidance in estimating calorie counts when eating out.
The nation’s largest restaurant chains have made a big deal in recent years about introducing smaller portion sizes. McDonald’s eliminated the Supersize menu, while T.G.I. Fridays and others have introduced small-plate items. Yet the restaurants have also been doing something else, with less fanfare: continuing to add dishes so rich that a single meal often contains a full day’s worth of calories.
Here, we show you what roughly 2,000 calories looks like at some large chains. (Depending on age and gender, most adults should eat between 1,600 and 2,400 calories a day.) Researchers have long understood that people are more likely to finish what’s on their plate than to stop eating because they’ve consumed a given amount of food. It’s “the completion compulsion,” a phrase coined in the 1950s by the psychologist Paul S. Siegel. Combine that compulsion with the rising number of restaurant meals Americans eat and the substance of those meals, and you start to understand why we’ve put on so much weight. But there is some good news: As you’ll see below, it’s not so hard to eat bountifully and stay under 2,000 calories. It’s just hard to do so at most restaurants.
Healthy Guide to Eating Out
It's a modern-day Norman Rockwell moment: After a hectic day, the family hops in the car and heads to a favorite neighborhood restaurant &mdash no cooking required, no dishes to be done, just a welcome opportunity to get out of the house and share a meal.
But what's served up at many restaurants could make you lose your appetite. The meals that are specially designed for kids can be some of the worst nutrition deals to be found: At Chili's, a child's Pepper Pals Little Chicken Crispers plus a side of Pepper Pals Homestyle Fries has a whopping 57 grams of fat &mdash that's 6 grams above the recommended daily allowance for an 8-year-old. At Ruby Tuesday, a meal of Kids' Minis (burgers and fries) weighs in at a jaw-dropping 917 calories, 71 percent of the 1,290 calories a child age 4 to 8 should eat in a day. A 2008 analysis of 1,474 kids' meals from national chain restaurants found 93 percent had more calories and 45 percent had more saturated fat and trans fats than kids need. That kind of eating sets the stage for obesity, says Margo G. Wootan, D.Sc., nutrition policy director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, a watchdog group based in Washington, DC Wootan led the research.
Restaurant and fast-food meals are a major contributor to the excess fat, sugar, calories, and blood pressure &mdash raising sodium in kids' diets, other studies show. Equally troubling is what kids' meals don't deliver &mdash fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and bone-building calcium. In one University of Minnesota Project EAT study of seventh through 12th graders, for example, those who ate fast food three or more times per week got about 25 percent less produce and about 21 percent less milk than those who didn't eat any fast food. And in a Children's Hospital Boston study of 6,212 kids ages 4 to 19, consumption of produce, fiber, and milk decreased significantly on days when the kids had fast food. "Combined with the overload of saturated fat, sodium, and calories, these nutrition gaps raise kids' risk for developing serious health problems, including heart disease and diabetes &mdash which are showing up in teens and even younger kids in increasing numbers," says Samantha B. Cassetty, M.S., R.D., nutrition director of the Good Housekeeping Research Institute.
Given that American kids now get more than 30 percent of their daily calories from foods consumed away from home, these fat- and calorie-laden meals are more worrisome than ever before. And in a down economy, the quest for healthy restaurant meals is even more important: Surveys show that most Americans continue to eat out at least once a week, but to save money, they're choosing fast food more often. "Every meal matters," says Bridget Swinney, R.D., author of Healthy Food for Healthy Kids. "If you eat out more than once or twice a month, it's important to steer your kids to healthier choices for their health and their weight &mdash and so they'll learn, in their formative years, how to navigate a restaurant menu successfully."
Getting your kids to eat well when they eat out requires some education, planning, and patience. To help you, Good Housekeeping analyzed nutrition information from dozens of the nation's top fast-food, pizza, and casual-dining chains. We polled top pediatric and adolescent nutrition experts, as well as parents of young children, tweens, and teens, for their best success tactics. Here, and in our nutritionist-approved meal guide, we'll show how to put healthier fare in front of your kids and actually get them to eat it.
Step 1: Know before you go.
Opt for a sit-down restaurant. You should make fast food your very last resort, and here's why: In a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill study that tracked more than 3,000 young adults for three years, each additional fast-food meal per week increased weight by a couple of pounds. But adding an extra restaurant meal didn't &mdash presumably because larger menus offer healthier options and smaller portions. So pick casual restaurants, even your local diner, over fast-food places. "In a fast-food restaurant, everything &mdash the signs, the aromas, the meal packaging &mdash is designed to push the big fries, burgers, and sodas," says Harvard Medical School pediatrician David Ludwig, M.D., Ph.D, director of the Optimal Weight for Life Program at Children's Hospital Boston. "It's very difficult to get a salad or fruit instead of a burger and fries and feel satisfied."
If you don't have time for a table-service meal, try delis and chain sandwich shops such as Subway, suggests Wootan, where you can find lower-fat deli meats, opt for whole-grain breads, and ask for extra veggies on your sandwich. "You'll find more choices that are lower in calories and fat than at a burger place," she says.
Look up nutrition info for your top three spots. When University of Arkansas researchers asked 193 people to guess the number of calories in samples of less-healthful restaurant meals, participants underestimated by more than 600 calories. In other studies, even nutritionists have lowballed calorie counts. The lesson here: The more you know up front, the better the choices you and your kids can make. "Most families go to the same fast-food places over and over, because they're conveniently located," notes Swinney. So quickly research the nutritional content of the food served by going online to big chains' Web sites. Also check the eye-opening photographs of 13 chain restaurants' menu boards &mdash complete with calorie counts, which are required in some U.S. cities &mdash at menulabeling.org. Since your local diner generally won't have its nutritional info listed anywhere, your best bet is of course to avoid what's fried and swimming in sauce. Beyond that, consider steering your kids to the breakfast section of the menu: Two eggs, two slices of bacon, a slice of wheat toast, and a fruit cup can make a perfectly acceptable meal &mdash plus the fun of eating A.M. food at night.
Snack strategically. Offer up fruit or low-fat cheese sticks as you're about to head out the door, so kids won't gorge when they get to the restaurant. "A healthy snack en route fills nutritional gaps in the meal ahead and takes the edge off hunger, so the bread basket or supersized portions won't be as tempting," says Swinney.
Step 2: Drink to their health
Surprisingly, you should encourage your kid to drink milk when dining out. An 8-ounce carton of low-fat milk packs 30 percent of your kid's daily calcium, 8 percent of magnesium, 11 percent of potassium, and 25 percent of vitamin D &mdash bone-building, blood pressure-lowering nutrients shortchanged in many kids' diets. It also supplies 8 grams of fill-you-up protein, all for just 100 calories. The USDA recommends that kids get two to three servings of low-fat or fat-free dairy a day, but they're not getting enough: In one study that tracked 2,371 girls for a decade, milk consumption dropped more than 25 percent while soda consumption almost tripled. "It's difficult for kids who aren't getting three servings of milk or other dairy products a day to meet their calcium needs," Swinney notes. To control calories and saturated fat, ask for fat-free or low-fat milk we discovered that many chains stock it, even if it's not on the menu. If a restaurant doesn't stock low-fat, go for chocolate, which is usually made with low-fat milk. Even whole milk is all right on occasion &mdash the nutrients are worth a few extra calories. (Steer clear, however, of ultra-rich hot chocolate, which at Panera Bread packs a hefty 390 calories and 12 grams of saturated fat low-fat chocolate milk, on the other hand, contains just 158 calories and 2.5 grams of saturated fat.)
Just say no to juice. "Parents think it's a good way to get another serving of fruit, but it lacks fiber and is high in calories," says Wootan. "Whole fruit is always a better choice." Of course, avoid soda, milkshakes, and fruit drinks &mdash they're essentially liquid candy that encourages weight gain. The damage: A child-size cola packs about 95 to 110 calories a 32-ouncer, a whopping 250 to 400. Milkshakes contain 350 to more than 1,000 calories apiece (and 10 to 26 grams of fat), and fruit drinks and slushes aren't much better, with 100 to 600-plus calories per serving.
Step 3: Get produce on their plates
Rare is the child who spontaneously orders mixed greens with balsamic vinaigrette. In fact, researchers at the National Cancer Institute found that nearly all children and teens (75 to 95 percent) don't get enough veggies, especially dark green or orange varieties, and a quarter of children ages 1 to 8 and three quarters of older children and teens don't get enough fruit. What's more, those who eat fast food frequently get even less than those who do not. "Make produce &mdash not french fries &mdash the side dish of choice with burgers, sandwiches, even pizza," Cassetty says. "Kids need the fiber, the antioxidants, the vitamins and minerals. Vegetables also fill you up for very few calories, so they counter the calorie and fat overload of restaurant food."
For kids who turn up their noses at the usual menu options (salads or cooked broccoli), try these tips:
Look for fun stuff. KFC and Chili's were among the eateries offering corn on the cob. A 51&frasl2-inch ear of corn with butter flavor at KFC had 140 calories, almost no sodium, and 4 grams of fiber. "Veggies you can pick up to eat are fun, and they take longer to eat, so your child will fill up on fewer calories," Swinney notes. (Yes, corn is starchy, but it's fiber-rich and lower in calories and fat than fries just avoid adding extra butter.)
Customize your pizza with several vegetable toppings and half the cheese. You'll cut the fat, and kids could get at least one official vegetable serving in two slices.
Check the adult options if you or your kid doesn't like the veggies on the kids' menu. Red Lobster offers fresh asparagus in season, Chili's has marinated portobello mushrooms, Bob Evans has glazed carrots, and Ruby Tuesday has creamy mashed cauliflower that delivers 5 grams of fiber, among other options. Bonus tip: Let "Why don't you just try it?" be your fallback phrase. Swinney says it takes 10 to 15 exposures to a new food for a kid to really know whether she likes it.
Don't forget about fruit. "Since it's usually raw, there's no added fat or sodium the way there can be with vegetables," Swinney notes. We found apple slices at McDonald's, Burger King, and Subway mandarin oranges at Wendy's and Chili's seasonal fresh fruit and cinnamon apples at Denny's melon wedges at Red Robin and fruit salad or fruit cup at Chik-fil-A, Così, and Panera Bread &mdash to name just a few.
Step 4: Nudge them toward lean main dishes.
Subtract the sauce, cheese, and bacon. This makes a tremendous difference: A plain Whopper Jr. has a reasonable 290 calories and 12 grams of fat &mdash fine for a tween or teen once in a while &mdash but add cheese and mayo, and the numbers catapult up to 420 calories and 25 grams of fat. At Red Robin, a California Chicken Burger with everything on it packs 57 grams of fat hold all the sauces, cheese, guacamole, and bacon, and it plummets to a manageable 9 grams of fat.
Give up the crunch. We know, we know: You've heard before that you should point your kids toward grilled &mdash not crispy or fried &mdash chicken and fish. But let these numbers convince you just how vital this is: At Red Lobster, the kids' broiled fish has 150 calories and just 1 gram of fat, while the kids' chicken fingers pack 414 calories and 24 grams of fat. At Chili's, the Pepper Pals Grilled Chicken Platter for kids has a reasonable 150 calories and 1 gram of fat, while the Country Fried Chicken Crispers have an astounding 560 calories and 37 grams of fat. (If your kid really craves something crunchy, order him a side salad &mdash with dressing is OK &mdash and ask your server to go heavy on the crisp veggies like carrots, cucumbers, and bell peppers.)
Turn appetizers and soups into entrées. Scope out the starters on the adult menu for wise nutritional buys. Among the options we found were a 160-calorie bowl of low-fat chicken noodle soup at Panera Bread (pair with a salad or whole-grain bread) and 440-calorie Asian dumplings at Ruby Tuesday (with a side veggie). Perfect for smaller, adventurous appetites. Tip: Steer your kid toward bean soups, if possible they're high in fiber and antioxidants.
Borrow from the main menu. Granted, grown-up dinner entrées can be expensive, but if two family members split a dish, it can be a win-win, nutritionally and financially. At Chili's, the Guiltless Grilled Salmon has just 395 calories and 6 grams of saturated fat (add some side dishes to make a meal of it) the chicken fajitas at Red Robin with guacamole and sautéed vegetables (hold the sour cream, melted margarine, and garlic-parmesan spread) clock in at 810 calories and 21 grams of fat.
Step 5: Orchestrate Their Orders
It is, of course, much easier to order for little kids (or at least steer their choices) than it is to convince a teenager that what he really wants is a nice chopped salad and some milk versus a chili-cheeseburger and a bottomless glass of root beer. But it can be done, if you know how to guide a tween's or teen's choices:
Walk the talk. Order first &mdash before your kids do &mdash and order wisely, suggests Dianne Neumark-Sztainer, Ph.D, a professor of public health at the University of Minnesota and author of I'm, Like, SO Fat!: Helping Your Teen Make Healthy Choices About Eating and Exercise in a Weight-Obsessed World. "If you order salad, your kids will be more likely to do so," she notes. "It sets the tone."
Steer tweens around the menu. Laura Plunkett, 45, a mom of two teens in Marblehead, MA, took control by reading through the menu and suggesting choices to her kids when they were preteens. "We kept it positive," Laura says. "We'd say things like, 'The kids' menu doesn't have good options today' and 'Here are items that look good from the regular menu.' That really helped guide their choices."
Don't dictate to teens. "Telling teens what to order or criticizing a choice they've made is counterproductive," says Anne Fletcher, R.D., author of Weight Loss Confidential: How Teens Lose Weight and Keep It Off &mdash and What They Wish Parents Knew. "They're going to exercise independence in a restaurant. One thing that's worked is to suggest sharing things to minimize the damage &mdash 'Why don't you share the fries?' or 'Let's split that milkshake.'"
Arm them with info. "People don't give teens enough credit for caring about healthy food," says Sage Farrar, who teaches kids about nutrition as a HealthCorps coordinator at Miami Coral Park Senior High School in Miami. "They crave information and they can be trusted to do the right thing. Compare food labels together, talk about the fat and calories in fast food (say, compare grilled chicken with extra crispy and ask why they think there's such a big difference). Tell them that eating healthy will help fill them up and give them energy. You'll make a lot more progress that way than if you try to mandate what they should or shouldn't eat." Says Fletcher: "Think about things that might motivate them: Tell them that they'll also get stronger faster, look better, do better in school and in sports, and have more energy. They listen much more than you think." And that's a fact you should work to your advantage &mdash for their health's sake.
3 Health Busters to Avoid
Table Talk. Since bread baskets and fistfuls of chips can ruin even the most nutritious meal, tell your server once you're seated, "No bread [or chips] for us tonight, thanks."
Sneaky Salads. Encourage your kid to dip veggies into mild salsa or vinaigrette dressing instead of the ubiquitous ranch dressing that turns up at many eateries 2 tablespoons pack 146 calories and 16 grams of fat.