When research began for the new Eat This, Not That! For Kids! book, David Zinczenko and Matt Goulding discovered vast dietary discrepancies between many of the places Americans love to eat most. So to help you separate the commendable from the deplorable, they put 43 major chain restaurants under the nutritional microscope. They judged restaurants by calculating the average number of calories per kid entrée, then rewarded restaurants for having healthy adult options that would appeal to the young palette, and for providing healthy vegetable sides and non-soda drink options. Finally, they docked points for those restaurants still harboring nasty trans fats.
The result was a Restaurant Report Card that holds each eating establishment fully accountable for the fare they’re serving up to all of us — moms, dads, kids, teens, and twentysomethings — along with a survival strategy for making it through any meal unscathed.
Chick-fil-A, one of my favorite places to eat both breakfast and lunch, scored an impressive A+. None of Chick-fil-A’s sandwiches break the 500-calorie barrier. And, they use whole breast meat chicken in their sandwiches, Nuggets, and Chick-n-Strips, not pressed or formed meat. The chicken arrives raw at restaurants and each piece is filleted and breaded by hand. Of course, their research also suggests skipping salads with ranch or Caesar dressings, any sandwich with bacon, and all milkshakes. Which is just wrong, because nothing goes better with a chicken sandwich than a good chocolate milkshake.