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Video: ‘Eat This, Not That!’: Salad shockers

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    >> i don't know what that music is. up next on "eat this, not that!" if you think ordering salad is always the healthy option, think again. david zinczenko is the editor in chief of men's health magazine and is the author of the "eat this, not that!" series.

    >> good to see you, matt.

    >> lettuce isn't fattening, but it's the salads today and all the extras where the fat and calories are.

    >> it's the extras. they fry this stuff. it's dressing. you go, get the salad , think you're making a sacrifice. hey, make fun of me friends, that's okay, i'm losing weight. they don't realize in some cases it's like the incredible hulk .

    >> the laugh is on you. you have five salad shockers here. the first is applebee's oriental chicken salad . this is a doozy in terms of fat and calories.

    >> if that's an oriental salad i am foo man chu. that's a kfc salad . they fried everything.

    >> 1300 calories, 93 grams of fat and 2,000 grams of sodium.

    >> it's a miracle they didn't fry the let sus. it's the equivalent of a mcdonald's double quarter pounder, fries and a coke.

    >> but they have a better option.

    >> go with the paradise chicken salad . you're cutting out 1,000 calories, 90 grams of fat. it has too much sodium at 2,000 milligrams. that's what you should get in a day. i guess paradise is a salt mine , but it is a big savings over what you would have eaten.

    >> a healthier option. wendy 's blt cobb salad with croutons and classic ranch. i think the croutons and the dressing are the problem.

    >> the croutons are stale sponges that soak up oil. the creamy dressing doesn't do you any favors. bacon, lettuce and maybe tummy for blt. this is the equivalent of two bacon cheeseburgers at wendy 's. it's not much of a savings there. it's still a big salad with a lot of calories and fat.

    >> okay. wendy 's has a healthier alternative. the apple pecan chicken salad with roasted pecans and pomegranate vinaigrette. let's go to quizno's. equal opportunity offenders here. the chicken caesar flatbread salad . 920 calories, 66 grams of fat and 2,090 milligrams of sodium.

    >> exactly, matt. this is the equivalent of having these three white castle sliders, bacon, cheese sliders, and three chicken rings.

    >> think about it. you have gone in to be healthy and this is technically what you are consuming in terms of fat and calories.

    >> it's a day's worth of calories. if you go to quizno's and don't want that thing, you can have the raspberry chipotle chicken salad . you will save 600 calories and 50 grams of fat.

    >> it's a little smaller.

    >> it's a good portion. it makes sense.

    >> this is tgi friday's santa fe chopped salad . 1,800 calories.

    >> i mean, any mexican-themed salad , stay away from.

    >> what's in there?

    >> it's this thick, creamy dressing right here. it's all the fried tortilla bits. it's just like, i don't know, let's make a deal with mexico. keep your salads, we'll keep salma hayek . [ laughter ]

    >> don't ever get a mexican mexican-themed salad .

    >> he works hard on these. he also works in the catskills on weekends.

    >> it just came to me. this is the calorie equivalent of a burger king double whopper , fries and a chocolate shake.

    >> the frosty?

    >> that's over here at wendy 's.

    >> oh, great.

    >> and the healthier alternative?

    >> a cobb salad .

    >> you save 1,300 calories.

    >> it's your only option on that menu.

    >> california pizza kitchen 's waldorf chicken salad with blue cheese dressing . that's a mistake right here.

    >> this is a fat farm . this has 1600 calories, almost a day's worth. this is the equivalent of this half pound double with cheese, fries, a medium frosty. the good thing about california pizza kitchen is you can make substitutions. if you get the half moroccan chicken salad you will save over 1,000 calories. this is the leaner half of the salad .

    >> what's our deal with mexico again?

    >> we're keeping salma.

    >> thank you.

    >> thanks, matt.

    >>> just ahead, teaching your teesh teenager to be money smart as they head to college

By

Explainer: 5 salads worse than a Whopper

  • Image: Wendy's BLT Cobb Salad
    Men's Health
    Wendy's BLT Cobb Salad has 740 calories and 50 grams of fat.

    I love Whoppers. I bet you do, too. Meat ... good. Ketchup and mayo ... good. Crunchy pickles ... good. What's not to like?

    I know what you're thinking: Dave, how could you of all people endorse the Whopper, a sandwich that perfectly encapsulates everything that's wrong with our nation's dining habits? Well, no one orders a Whopper thinking it's a sensible menu choice. It's an indulgence, an anti-diet food, and everyone knows it. Credit Burger King for being transparent with nutritional information.

    Which brings me to my point: Just as you wouldn't order a Whopper because you're trying to watch your waistline, you'd never order a salad because it sounds like the most delicious item on the menu. No, it's a concerted effort to put one of the healthiest foods on the menu into your body, flavor be damned.

    Except, more often than you realize, that salad is the worst choice on the menu. Restaurants across the country have learned that "nutrition" sells, so they put these caloric calamities on the "light choice" side of the menu with cute little heart icons that make you think you're making a healthy selection. What they haven't learned, though, is how to make food that is actually nutritious. Here we've rounded up five examples of salads so bad that you'd be better off ordering that Whopper — with its 670 calories, 40 grams of fat and 1,020 milligrams of sodium — after all.

  • Wendy’s BLT Cobb Salad with Croutons and Avocado Ranch Dressing

    740 calories
    50 grams fat (15.5 grams saturated)
    2,140 milligrams sodium

    Calorie equivalent: 2 Wendy's Jr. Bacon Cheeseburgers (700 calories)

    Don't be totally shocked by this high calorie count — this salad is sporting two of the biggest culprits when it comes to diet-busting greenery. First, check the avocado Ranch dressing. Any creamy dressing is going to be high in fat and calories. Replace it with vinaigrette and save big. Next, ditch the croutons, which are really just an extra load of totally empty calories and carbs.

    Eat this instead: Wendy's Apple Pecan Chicken Salad with Roasted Pecans and Pomegranate Vinaigrette Dressing

    580 calories
    27 grams fat (9 grams saturated)
    1,590 milligrams sodium

  • Quiznos' Chicken Caesar Flatbread Salad (with bread)

    920 calories
    66.5 grams fat (20.5 grams saturated, 0 grams trans fat)
    2,090 milligrams sodium

    Calorie equivalent: Three White Castle Bacon Cheeseburgers with 3-piece Chicken Rings (860 calories)

    Unless you have proof to the contrary, just assume that any Caesar salad in a restaurant is a bad salad choice. That’s because the Caesar dressing is exceptionally heavy — really, all creamy dressings are. And because most of these salads contain almost exclusively lettuce as the veggie ingredient, they don’t even offer that much nutritional value.  

    Eat this instead: Quiznos' Raspberry Chipotle Chicken Salad (small)

    350 calories
    13 grams fat (6.5 grams saturated)
    795 milligrams sodium

  • Applebee's Oriental Chicken Salad

    1,310 calories
    93 grams fat (15 grams saturated, 2.5 grams trans fats)
    1,470 milligrams sodium

    Calorie equivalent: Almost as much as a McDonald’s Double Quarter Pounder with Cheese, Medium Fries and Medium Coke (1,330 calories)

    Why is this salad so hefty? Part of the blame goes to the "tasty Oriental vinaigrette," for sure (the secret is always, at least partially, in the sauce). Another reason: It's topped with "crispy noodles" (carbohydrate overload). And to complete the triumvirate of dietary doom: Fried chicken to boot. What exactly makes this a "salad" again? Either order the Paradise Chicken Salad, or choose something off of Applebee’s new "Unbelievably Great Tasting and Under 550 Calories Menu."

    Eat this instead: Applebee's Paradise Chicken Salad

    340 calories
    4.5 grams fat (1 gram saturated)
    2,060 milligrams sodium

  • California Pizza Kitchen's Waldorf Chicken Salad with Blue Cheese Dressing

    1,570 calories
    30 g saturated fat
    2,082 mg sodium

    Calorie equivalent:
    Wendy's 1/2-Pound Double with Cheese, Medium Fries and Medium Chocolate Frosty (1,570 calories)

    California Pizza Kitchen's salad menu is littered with gigantic gut-bombs like this one. There's no reason that this salad should saddle you with three-quarters of your daily allotment of calories. According to the CPK website, it contains: "Field greens, chilled-grilled chicken breast, seedless grapes, Granny Smith apples, candied walnuts, celery and Gorgonzola cheese." When mixed together in reasonable proportions, there's nothing inherently wrong with these ingredients — in fact, most of them are good for you. It's just that CPK jumbo sizes their menu items. Choose the Half Moroccan Chicken Salad instead — just be aware that it's also the size of a solid sandwich, and consider it your main meal, not a starter dish.

    Eat this instead: California Pizza Kitchen's Half Moroccan Chicken Salad

    412 calories
    4 grams saturated fat
    309 milligrams sodium

  • T.G.I. Friday's Santa Fe Chopped Salad

    1,800 calories

    Calorie equivalent: Burger King Double Whopper, Medium Fries and Small Chocolate Shake (1,800 calories)

    This is the worst salad in America. T.G.I. Friday's doesn't reveal full nutritional information, so we don't know how much salt or fat this monstrous dish packs. Here's a hint: Never, ever order a Mexican-themed salad, no matter where you're eating. As in this case, they're usually huge dishes of heavy burrito toppings on a bed of lettuce leaves. The only salad you're safe to order at Friday's is the Cobb.

    Eat this instead: T.G.I. Friday's Cobb Salad

    590 calories

    Bonus tip: Avoid all items on our list of the worst foods in America.

    Related links:
    6 simple strategies for deeper sleep
    Cook This, Not That!
    The 20 worst drinks in America 2010
    100 best Men's Health fitness tips

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