Why Restaurants Don’t Show Calories in Their MealsAuthor: Mikki Donaldson
Calorie disclosure on restaurant menus – does it matter?
It’s natural to see a calorie count on a bag of chips or on an energy drink can, but who cares about calorie disclosure on restaurant menus? Does it matter to those who just want to enjoy a satisfying and pleasant tasting meal? Some believe not. It could be one reason why restaurants don’t bother to show calories in their meals. And here goes another…
Studies show little impact.
The Subway restaurant chain is notorious for its claim to provide low-calorie meals. The adverts made Jarred a weight loss icon, in fact. But the truth is, Jarred intentionally sought to lose weight. Typically, if we are not on a diet, we don’t inquire about calories and our eating habits don’t change when we go out to eat. At least, that’s what the Health Affairs journal reports as a consequence of a recently published study.
Most of the time, we order the same meal when we go to a particular establishment and don’t think about carbs, cholesterol or calories. In reality, the folks who look at nutrition guides and calorie count, don’t need to. They are often the “skinny” people who don’t gain a pound.
Foods that taste good are usually jammed packed with fat, unless you are eating off the low-calorie menu. And because you eat off the low-calorie menu, you could be faced with the temptation of having one large meal or two small meals. Let’s face it… a meal consisting of only 225 calories doesn’t sound filling when you consider the suggested consumption is 2000 calories.
Can you trust the calories listed by restaurants?
According to some other survey publicized in Health Affairs, food chains that automatically display calorie information to their customers are the ones who make available low-calorie meals. The question is, ‘Can you rely on restaurants to list calories accurately?’
For somebody who is attempting to shed a few added pounds, realizing how many grams are in the meal is important. To ensure nutritional values are accurate, link up with a restaurant nutrition app because it may not be that way. At the same time, you should acknowledge that not all calories have the same effect.
Many people don’t know that breads and things like refined sugar and precooked, frozen meals all stimulate the desire to eat again… and again. For this reason, Dr. Mercola maintains we should get our calories from healthier sources such as food with lots of protein, fiber and from unfermented vegetables. These nutrients incline to satisfy hunger cravings. This is why just considering calories isn’t enough.
Not all restaurants are created equal
If you think about it, people who eat at franchises like McDonald’s and Crackle Barrel aren’t disturbed. They already know that a meal from most fast food chains and buffet chains is fattening and toxic, so can you tell me how putting up a calorie counter will change our bad eating habits? It’s likely that it won’t.
Fortunately, not all restaurants are the same. Healthy food chains like Jason’s Deli is happy to announce its organic food menu. Not only that, but the website offers a Nutrition Calculator and an Interactive Nutrition Menu. However, if you are dining at a fine food establishment, chances are you will see a list of meals and a high price tag and not the amount of calories they contain.
Health Minister Leo Varadkar believes that if the information is visible, then people are able to make a smart choice. In efforts to fight obesity, a law now mandates that restaurants do their part in displaying the numbers associated with meals. It’s on the bag for carry-out and as well as on the menu. Varadkar also reminds us that a ‘healthy’ salad can have more calories than a burger.
Some helpful tools
The Affordable Care Act instructs eating establishments with more than 20 locations to list their menu items with the amount of calories, fat, sodium, carbohydrates, cholesterol and sugar.
Research as shown that while we have this data, it’s only good information if we use it. More than half of the population who eat out, have noticed the trend, but only a handful actually use it.
A great way to implement a good habit is to start young. Jessie Green, in a study by Arizona State, agrees that by putting a low-calorie menu into the school’s curriculum will help to reduce obesity. There’s also a terrific, handy application for your phone called The Restaurant Nutrition app that will help prevent overeating anywhere.
Why restaurants don’t bother to show calories in their meals? Simply because it doesn’t work, If there isn’t a particular goal in mind for counting calories, we, as the people, make choices. We eat what we want and we eat where we want. For those who choose to count calories, get the restaurant nutrition app to help meet your goals.