Can I Still Eat Burgers and Fries on a Diet

These dietitian tips can help you order the best burger to accommodate your craving.

Healthy Food

Q: I don’t want to give up my favorite burgers and fries.  What’s the best burger to order?

A: We hear lots of questions about burgers and fries, popular foods that many people enjoy. Traditional burgers and fries can be notoriously high in calories, fat and even sodium.  If you’re watching your weight or making healthier choices in your diet, you’ll want to be smart about how and how often you order burgers and fries. 

These dietitian tips can help you order the best burger to accommodate your craving:

  1. Go with leaner burger choices – Leaner cuts of beef (such as sirloin), chicken/turkey and especially veggie burgers can be good choices. Get the inside scoop on veggie burgers here.
  2. Rethink your burger bun – Opt for a whole grain bun or skip it altogether to cut calories.  Many restaurants now offer “low-carb” or “protein-style” lettuce wraps in place of traditional burger buns.
  3. Choose extras wisely – Load up on the veggies like lettuce, tomatoes and onions to add nutrition and fiber, and go easy on the cheese and sauces to control calories and fat.
  4. Skip or share the fries – Order a green or fruit salad with your burger whenever possible in place of fries.  These lower-fat and calorie choices make for a balanced meal without the guilt.  If you can’t resist the flavor of fries with your burger, share a small order with a friend.  Even sweet potato fries should be enjoyed in moderation.
  5. Check the nutrition information – Having the facts in black and white can be a great motivator to help you make the best choices at restaurants.  Whatever your health goals, nutrition information can help you stay on track.  It’s now easier than ever to find detailed nutrition information at restaurants.  Many restaurants have already started posting this information and many more will start in the coming months as a result of menu labeling legislation.

Are you a fan of burgers and fries?  If so, what are your tips for ordering the best burger?