In a perfect world, there’s always time to start the morning with a healthy breakfast. Yogurt, oatmeal, chia pudding, and a veggie omelet sound perfect, but sometimes you just don’t have the time and energy to make a whole meal from scratch or even sit down and eat it.
Many of the top fast-food restaurants across America have found ways to fill this niche and give morning commuters something easy to eat on their way to work. While you shouldn’t have a hard time finding a quick bite on the move, not every fast-food breakfast checks off all the nutritional boxes if you want to watch your diet. A ton of menu items pack in fat, carbs, sugar, and salt in order to help make certain items delicious. While these options have found their fair share of fans, these foods also can easily derail any eating plan.
With so many less-than-wholesome fast-food breakfast items on the market, trying to figure out which ones to avoid feels like a nightmare. Luckily, Eat This, Not That! consulted a handful of experts to narrow down the 9 worst menu items you need to cross off your list. If you don’t have the time to start your day any other way, make sure you grab one of the 12 Healthy Fast Food Breakfasts Under 360 Calories next time you visit your favorite fast food restaurant in the morning.
The danger of the Dunkin’ Coffee Cake Muffin lies in the massive amount of sugar packed into each pastry, in addition to the huge portion of refined carbs.
“Refined carbs, also known as simple or processed carbs, are grains that have been stripped of their beneficial nutrients like fiber, B vitamins, and iron making them empty calories, Best continued. “They are quickly processed by the body which raises blood glucose and insulin rapidly after meals. These characteristics all lead to a slow metabolism and weight gain. As the body is not obtaining beneficial nutrients from the refined carb muffins, but rather inflammatory and gut damaging nutrients.”
If you crave a muffin and need to stick to a healthy eating plan, you can’t go wrong making these pastries at home. Opt for 16 Cozy Muffin Recipes That Are Perfect for Weight Loss and discover your new favorite muffin.
The Dunkin’ Coffee Cake Muffin can’t do your diet any favors, but it isn’t the only fast food breakfast offering that loads up on a walloping amount of carbs. Einstein Bros’ Apple Cinnamon Bagel ends up looking much closer to a pastry thanks to the massive amount of carbs and sugars the bagel packs in per serving.
“A bagel on its own is just empty carbohydrates with very little fiber,” Juliana Tamayo, RD, MS at LDN at FitnessClone.com said. “Most people eat bagels with only cream cheese, which does not add any fiber or protein to your diet. In most cases, bagels are high in carbohydrates and are absorbed quickly, making your satiety short-lived.” If you need to watch your daily diet, avoid this very sweet bagel.
If you need to hit the road and don’t have time for a proper breakfast, Carl’s Jr. Monster Biscuit sounds tempting, especially if you wake up hungry. While this biscuit sandwich comes with sausage, bacon, cheese, and eggs, it also packs in almost half of a day’s worth of calories and a ton of fat in each serving. The salt content of this biscuit sandwich exceeds the FDA recommendation of sodium you should eat each day, while the bacon in this sandwich takes the item to whole new unhealthy levels.
“Regular bacon is a fan favorite, but not necessarily a good breakfast option,” Tamayo said. “It is high in sodium, saturated fats, and nitrites. Bacon is going to raise your blood cholesterol levels, while also causing fluid retention due to excess sodium. Nitrites are also known carcinogens present in deli meats and usually used [to] keep products from [spoiling].”
If you need a new breakfast sandwich, don’t settle for a calorie-packed biscuit. Instead, reach for 16 Delicious Breakfast Sandwich Recipes You Won’t Believe Are Healthy.
At first glance, this unassuming yogurt parfait might not seem that bad, especially in comparison to greasy breakfast sandwiches or sugar-packed muffins. Underneath this blueberry yogurt’s healthy-looking exterior lurks a ton of sugar that can easily derail your day before it even starts.
“Although yogurt is usually recommended, there are some types you might want to avoid,” Tamayo said. “In general, plain flavored yogurt is high in sugar and preservatives and has very little protein. Greek yogurt is the recommended kind because it contains more protein and probiotics. Regular yogurt is high in calories and will often have very little protein. It can cause high blood sugar and will not keep you full [for] long.”
Steer clear from this sugar-packed yogurt, even if it sounds like a healthy option