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Making the Right Choices

I've now been doing this whole journey to sanctification thing for just over 3 months now, and I'm really starting to see how my decisions before were HORRIBLE! Like many of those out there, Chinese buffets used to be a downfall--Actually, ALL buffets used to cause me trouble! :) I would typically have 2 or 3 or 4 plates of food and a dessert. That's probably more food than I need in a couple days, much less one meal. I used to eat two frozen burritos as a snack! That's 600 calories of sin--before I topped it off with shredded cheese, sweet chili sauce, and sour cream. I feel gross just thinking about it now.

Last week, though, I had the most concrete revelation of the changes I've made. My friends and I love to go to Red Robin. Yum! But not always the best for you. Here's a picture of the nutritional info of what I used to order most times: A1 Peppercorn Burger with fries (and a refill) + sauces for the fries. Oh, and no soda; just water (like that does a lot of good!!):

Wow. That's more than a day's worth of Calories--and that would just be my dinner!! Sick, huh?

But with some more knowledge and a great interactive nutrition-burger building application, I now have a NEW favorite: Jamaican Jerk Chicken Burger with melon and an Ice Water. But with a couple of changes: I only get one piece of cheese (why does there need to be two??), I don't get the jerk seasoning (so much sodium), and melon on the side (instead of fries (not as good, but still so tasty!).

So, what's the difference?
Calories - 2140 less (25% of the old favorite)
Total Fat - 156g less (17% of the old favorite)
Sodium - 6130mg less (16% of the old favorite)
Carbs- 161g less (30% of the old favorite)
Dietary Fiber- 7g less (36% of the old favorite)
Protein- 26g less (62% of the old favorite)
Weight- 63g more (108% of the old favorite)

So, WAY WAY WAY better on the Calories, Fat, Sodium, and Carbs. Worse on the Dietary Fiber and the Protein (but I can get that other places). And More weight (which will help to make me feel fuller on less food).

The shocking thing for me is the change in the sodium. That's about a tablespoon's worth of salt.

Folks, grab a tablespoon; fill it up with salt; eat it. No, please don't! But just think, that's how much extra Sodium I was consuming. Now 1169mg is still a ton--almost 1/2 of the recommended daily allowance, but way better than before. And the fat. Wow, the fat. That's the equivalent of 17 KFC Extra Crispy Drumsticks! And the Calories would add an extra 7 pounds to my weight over the course of a year (if I only went once a month).

So glad my eyes have been opened!

So, folks, that's how big of a difference making informed decisions can make!


  South Beach Steve

July 14, 2009 at 6:44 PM

Like you, buffets have always been a weakness for me. For some reason, I always though I had to get my money's worth. I did that for sure, but I also helped ruin my health in the process. The comparison you did tonight on the burgers is also a good one. It is amazing how much we don't know about how we are furting ourselves.

Keep up your great work!