Best and Worst Fast Food: McDonald's Edition
No matter how well you plan, every day can't be an ultra-healthy, bring-your-own-lunch-to-work day. But just because you're eating at a fast food place doesn't mean all bets are off. Get to know your options with the healthiest and unhealthiest foods at McDonald's.
To put this post together, we pored over the nutritional fact sheets for all the items at McDonald's. The following list of healthiest and unhealthiest foods was compiled based on several factors, including total calories, fat, and sodium content. It's up to you to decide which dietary trade-offs you're willing to make, because when you indulge in a little fast food, trades-offs are inevitable. Need a lot of protein? You'll be eating a lot of salt and fat too. Trying to avoid high sodium content? Good luck with that; you'll rarely find any truly low sodium items at any fast food restaurant outside of ordering fries with no salt.
Below you'll see our galleries for both the healthiest and unhealthiest items at McDonald's. Click through on each for the full run-down.
Five Healthiest Foods at McDonald's
Five Unhealthiest Foods at McDonald's
The biggest key to eating healthier at a fast food place—which will come as a surprise to no one—is portion control. If you're going to grab McDonald's for lunch, you really need to ask yourself how important getting a huge meal like a Quarter Pounder with Cheese, a large fry, and a chocolate shake is, compared to a more moderate meal like a regular hamburger, a small fry, and a small Coke. The former provides for the entire daily caloric needs of an average size adult, while the former leaves plenty of room for breakfast and dinner.