Fast food is exceptionally popular in Singapore and the industry has been consistently growing over the years. Why wouldn’t it? It’s fast, easy and most importantly, convenient. Even though fast food is almost always unhealthy, the benefits simply outweigh the drawbacks for those who do not have time. With Singapore’s busy & hectic lifestyle, it’s a no-brainer that many would turn to fast food as their main food source.
The king of the industry is, of course, McDonald’s. It is the most popular fast food chain in the world, according to a report in QSR magazine, raking in 35.8B in 2015. And one of the most sought-after items on the menu is the McSpicy, which is par for the course considering Singapore’s love for spicy food. However, everyone knows how unhealthy the McSpicy is by now. Just by looking, you can tell that it definitely will not help you to stay fit. Are McSpicy calories really as high as they seem to be?
How Healthy Is The McSpicy?
Well, we did some research on McDonald’s own nutrition calculator and found that the McSpicy packs a whopping 522 calories. While this might seem reasonable, a whole cup of cooked rice has only 280 calories in total. Not only that, but it is loaded with fat. 25g, to be exact. 5.1g of that consists of saturated fat, which increases your cholesterol levels and puts you at a higher risk of heart disease. It also contains 1.28g of salt, which makes up more than 1/5 of the daily salt intake recommended by HealthHub. Notably, these statistics do not include the fries or drinks that come with the meal.
Even just getting small fries as a snack may not be ideal (although they are delicious). The default option for a meal, which includes small fries and a small coke, adds almost as many calories as the burger itself, with 436 calories. The fries by itself has 14g of fat, with 2.1g being saturated.
However, there are ways to make your McDonald’s dining experience a little easier on the arteries.
How To Eat Healthier At McDonald’s
1. A Side Of Healthiness
Instead of having a set meal with fries and coke, change it to a corn cup and plain water. The corn cup, unlike the fries, is actually healthy. It has 66 calories and only 1g of fat, with only 0.2g of it being saturated. Changing your drink to plain water helps to cut your carb intake by 39g as well as lowering your calorie intake by 153 calories.
2. Deserting Your Desserts
Instead of ordering a McFlurry or Chocolate Fudge Sundae, try the vanilla cone. While ice cream itself is generally not healthy, the vanilla cone is by far the best option if you have a sweet tooth. The McFlurry has 402 calories with 14g of fat (6.7g saturated), while the Sundae contains 343 calories with 11g of fat (6.7g saturated). On the other hand, the vanilla cone only has 147 calories and 4g of fat (2g saturated). Your winner: the vanilla cone.
3. The Main Change
As much as we don’t want to admit it, most of the food in McDonald’s is unhealthy. But, there are a few items on the menu that are actually really healthy for you. One of these items is the Grilled Chicken Salad Delight 500 w/ Coke Zero. So just how good is it? It’s really good. It only has 261 calories, 25g of carbs, 23g of protein, and only 7g of fat (1.9g saturated). It’s perfect for a light snack or to pair with another small meal. The other item is the Skinless Grilled Chicken McWrap with wholegrain bread. While not as healthy as the salad, it does have its merits. It has 337.6 calories, 22g protein, 16g fat (4.2g saturated fat), 26.4g carbs and 889mg sodium. Even though the sodium count is high, the McWrap might be your best shot at eating a decently healthy meal at McDonald’s.
By Muhd Farhan