Dining Out: Are Your Choices Healthy?

According to Restaurant and Institutions (R&I) 2010 New American Diner Study, 46% of consumers said they are making more healthful choices when dining out. It’s good news too, since this same study says American’s average 25% of their meals away from home, or 46% of their food dollar. That’s a huge investment of a family’s budget, and the reality of the situation is diner’s actual selections are not all that great, yet!

• Fried vegetables represent 46% of total vegetable consumption among children ages 2-18 (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey/The Ohio State University)

• 50% of grains or 3 in 6 servings should be whole grains. Americans average 1 serving daily. (Dr. Walter Willett, chairman, Department of Nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health)

• The recommended maximum daily sodium consumption for healthy adults who aren’t at risk for high blood pressure is 2300 milligrams. The average American male consumes 3,100 to 4,700 milligrams and the average female consumes 2,300 to 3,100 milligrams daily. (University of Colorado Extension)

• One free 20 ounce beverage refill brings your total beverage contribution to 480 calories and 30 teaspoons of sugar. That’s almost 25% of your caloric requirements in a single beverage from one meal alone, and way beyond the 6 teaspoon sugar limit per day for women and 9 teaspoons for men.
It can be a challenge to eat healthy when eating out, so arm yourself with knowledge if you are in the 25% crowd who eat out regularly. 59% of those participating in the R&I 2010 New American Diner Study said they would be interested in seeing calorie counts posted on in-store menus and menu boards. Would more information make you think twice about your selections?


Categories: Nutrition & Wellness, Recipes

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