In spite of popular belief, restaurant food can be just as unhealthy as fast food, or at the very least, it’s not too much of an improvement when it comes to nutrition and dietary purposes. They might look healthier, lacking the usual grease and overly-oiled products, but they’re not the much better option.
A recent study done by the University of Illinois has revealed that the general population does not know as much about full-service restaurants as they believed. Around 18,000 adults were asked questions about their food pallets and dietary habits over a period of two days before the survey.
Out of the participants, one third has admitted to eating at a fast food in either one or both of the two days, and 25% claimed that they ate at a full-service restaurant in at least one of them. When compared to volunteers who ate home-cooked meals, the contrast was not stark between franchises, be it restaurant or fast-food chain.
Those who chose a cooked meal over a burger and fries only showed a slightly healthier diet, but the differences were so minimal that they were essentially irrelevant. The conclusion formed that eating in any kind of restaurant will increase the amount of calorie, sugar and fat intake. In fact, unsurprisingly, home-cooked meals still remain in the top as far as healthy diets are concerned.
However, there did seem to be a different in eating restaurant food at the actual establishment or eating it at home. Apparently, while the food content was the same, the tendency to overeat was eliminated by the trip and time. Eating fast food or restaurant food at home lowers the amount of calories taken, along with lowering the sodium and fat levels.
Home-cooking is the only way to properly control and know exactly what is in our food, in comparison to dining out which leaves it completely in the hands of the chef or cooks. We can properly manage the fat and sugar, along with adding as much vegetables as we wish, which could be used to prevent overeating as well.
The FDA has demanded restaurants to now provide a full list of calorie, fat and sugar content for each item on their menu in at least 20 locations, but most have failed to comply so far. However, people are still encouraged to browse their websites for more information before visiting a specific restaurant.
Dieticians are allegedly not surprised with the findings, who still emphasize the need to learn how to cook our own meals if we wish for a healthy food pallet. We can pick and choose what goes into our meal, prepare it as we please, and it’s also important to properly savor our food, take our time and chew.
Slowing down how fast we eat is another way to prevent overeating and stop at the strictly necessary amount.
Image source: thechart.blogs.cnn.com