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TOPIC: I was fooled at Arby's!!

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February 10, 2011 9:22 AM
Ok so last night I decided I was getting fed up of eating the same thing almost every night (im buying some cookbooks this weekend to venture out past chicken and veggies) so me and the hubby agreed to go out and get something to eat. Obviously my choices are very limited so no fast food. Well we drive by an Arby's and i feel like that would be ok. I order a turkey and swiss on whole wheat with a tiny bit of mayonnaise and lettuce sandwich, i felt all pleased with myself, it was yummy and with the ingredients, i figured it was healthy. Well I look it up when I get home, 700 calories!!!!! WTH!!!! How is that possible???? I look up a homemade sandwich with the same stuff in it, 300 calories. What on earth is in that Arby's sandwich that makes the calories so high? The sodium levels for the sandwich are also through the roof! I thought I was making a good choice so I treated myself to two of those small potato cakes with it, as i worked out hard today and i figured i would be fine on the calorie counting, but once i added the sandwich, i was over. SO MAD!!!! Can anyone explain what went wrong?
February 10, 2011 9:26 AM
When I go to Arby's, I get a ham and turkey salad, with no dressing and I'm only out 250 calories. Get a salad next time! =)
February 10, 2011 9:27 AM
What I learned about fast food places is that everything is usually genetically modified or completely processed, making the calories extremely high! That is why you would think that sandwich would only be 300, but it turned out to be 700! I'm sorry but don't worry too much. At least you learned a good lesson :)
February 10, 2011 9:27 AM
A lot it is just the size of their sandwiches. if you only had half a sandwich (which is pretty filling) it would only be about 350, much more in line with what you could make at home. If you know that going in, you can always put a half aside before you even start eating and save it for later. I find if I make that decision up front, I am less tempted to plow through the other half. I also try to note my calories in my phone before I get the food. That way if something is deceptively high (like a lot of salads), I can plan accordingly. BTW, I love your quote!
February 10, 2011 9:27 AM
It's the bread. It's really thick and it's generally full of sugar.
February 10, 2011 9:28 AM
Not trying to be snippy, but the problem was thinking that fast food can be low calorie. Now there may be some cases where this is possible, but I"d say on the whole, if you're looking for low calories, fast food is not the way to go. It's crazy, but some of the McDonald's Salads have more calories than a Big Mac. Not only is fast food high calorie, it is usually also high fat and mega high on sodium.

Now, that being said, please don't get too hung up on this experience. Look on it as a lesson learned. I've found that one of the best things you can do is look up what you're going to have BEFORE you go to a restaurant so there are no surprises when you get home and add the calories.
February 10, 2011 9:28 AM
You trusted a fast food restaurant to use real food. I'm not sure WHAT they use. Whatever it is, it's full of fat, sodium and hidden calories so you'll crave more! Consider last night a lesson learned. (And the ones painfully learned are always remembered.)

Next time, do your nutrition research BEFORE going out. Go ahead & look online now at all the restaurants in your area just to have an idea. Then you can avoid that horrible shock when you get home.

Best of luck to you.
February 10, 2011 9:28 AM
That's how it is with all fast food. I'm still trying to figure out how they pack that many calories into their foods.
February 10, 2011 9:28 AM
I made myself a cheat sheet of okay choices at all the fast food places I sometimes eat at and keep it in my purse. That way if I'm caught off-guard I know at least one meal I can eat there. Also when in doubt, order a kids' meal.
Edited by mommyskis On February 10, 2011 9:30 AM
February 10, 2011 9:28 AM
That's fast food for ya. I try to look up the nutrition facts for restaurants we might want to go to. Your best bet is going to Subway but some of their items like the roasted chicken is high in sodium. You might as well just eat at home, this way you know what's in your food.
February 10, 2011 9:29 AM
They market these things as "healthy," when really they're just not fried." They put more meat on the sandwich than we would, and probably more sauce. Their bread is different from what you'd buy yourself too -- you notice how thick the slices are. It's like eating 4 slices of store-bought bread.

On a side note, the potato cakes ARE a better choice calorie-wise than the fries, as I found out last time I ate there. I don't remember the calorie difference, and it's not a lot, but it's something.

Don't beat yourself up over this. It happens to the best of us, and one meal isn't going to kill you. Next time if you're planning to go out, try to look at the nutritional info on the restaurant's website so you can make more informed choices. All the chains have nutritional info for all their menu items on their websites (although sometimes it's hard to find).
February 10, 2011 9:29 AM
I know how that's frustrating as hell! Even seemingly "safe" sandwiches can be high in calories and sodium. Even Panera Bread has sandwiches weighing in near 1,000 calories. Your best bet at Arby's would be the Roast Beef Jr. sandwich (200 calories) and a small side salad. Don't be too hard on yourself! Just learn and move on! You're already working hard on your journey!
February 10, 2011 9:29 AM
I used to get that sandwich all the time. The last time I got it I was eating it here at work and checked the nutrition info. I about fell off my chair. So I ate half and just ate the turkey off of the other half. Its probably way high in calories because of the size of the bread, mayo is very high in calories, and the cheese. If i treat myself to arbys i get the chicken sandwich or french dip and swiss, if i'm okay on my sodium for that day. Both are way better options but the dip has tons of sodium because of the au ju. I try not eat out. If I do I go to subway. Most salads are worse then a hamburger. Its crazy! I've become obsessed with looking up nutrition facts on everything..
February 10, 2011 9:29 AM
The amount of bread, there is extra meat too might attribute to that. If you made it at home the bread is a slice versus a bun. Yeah eating out really is hard, but don't sweat it, sometimes it is good to fool the body with other foods once in a while, plus I bet you made you husband happy!
February 10, 2011 9:30 AM
Oh my, yes they can be deceiving. Here's a little insight from a girl who used to work at Arby's in highschool (long time ago). The wheat bread that you think is healthy is pumped with sugar. The turkey has been roasting in it's own fat juices for at least a couple hours. And I'm betting that they put a butter-substitute liquid on the buns when they ran it through the bun toaster (but you probably didn't even taste it). Also - if it was a market fresh sandwich, those bread slices are huge!

So yes, I can believe that it would be 700 calories. Sorry yuu had to learn the hard way! I feel like it's always the "hey this looks healthy" items at fast food restaurants are usually anything but healthy.
February 10, 2011 9:31 AM
Don't beat yourself up. Consider it a lesson learned. Another eye-opening step on your journey. You can consider it a blessing in disguise, because now you know. Get a little book from Carry it around with you (purse, car) and it has all this nutrition information from tons of restaurants and foods in the grocery store. Or if you can use the MFP app, that would also be helpful. Most restaurants have nutrition information posted on their websites. One of the things I've learned on this journey is that I never order anything at a restaurant without knowing how many calories are in it. I try to plan what I am going to order ahead of time.

It's got to be the cheese and the bread loading up those calories. I looked it up and the difference without the cheese and bread is about 550 calories. Yikes!!! It looks like none of their market fresh sandwiches are healthy! Dang, I used to love those! Sheesh...that's why I'm here, though. Sorry that happened. But at least you know now. Knowledge is power, my friend.
Edited by kappyblu On February 10, 2011 9:34 AM
February 10, 2011 9:32 AM
At FF places you have to be REALLY careful when they have their sandwiches like that for sales. 99% of the time, they are more in calories than their fries and a burger ever thought of being.

BUT....look on the good now know what you are getting into at FF places.
February 10, 2011 9:34 AM
I work in a nice sit down restaurant and just recently looked at some of the calorie counts on some things you would think would be good choices for people on a diet...a plain hamburger on our menu has 929 calories and 55 grams of fat, our turkey burger (no cheese or mayo has 700 calories and 40 grams of's crazy! When need a change I usually go to Burger King and get a whopper junior with no mayo, I think that it has somewhere around 260 calories
February 10, 2011 9:36 AM
ive got a pretty nifty app on my phone that lists tons of resturants and fast food places,thier menus and nutritional info.its really cool and helps me make the best decision no matter where im at
February 10, 2011 9:37 AM
If anything, at least it only took you ONE time to learn. I have heard people boast and brag about the choices they make at fast food places and believe they are making the right decisions when they have absolutely no clue just how bad that "food" is for you. And yes, the salads at McDonald's are horribly bad, and a lot more calories than you think a salad would be. Very decieving. THe best thing to do is to avoid fast food all together because you can never trust it. And if you ever have noticed, there's just a certain taste and smell to fast food that we just don't get at home...and I don't mean just the greasy smell, but the smell of overprocessed and modified food products. None of it is good, and the sooner you stop going to those places, the sooner you won't miss it. And you won't miss the guilt of have eating there and believing their sales pitches!
February 10, 2011 9:37 AM
The 700 calories for a market fresh doesn't surprise me - those sandwiches are HUGE!!! My usual restaurant thing is to cut the sandwich in half before I even start; then set that 2nd half aside so I'm not tempted. If I order a salad anywhere, I order dressing on the side and drizzle a bit on as I eat; never dump the whole dressing packet or bowl on. Another good trick is to order some type of vinagarette dressing instead of creamy; try raspberry vinagarette or balsamic vineagar - both are yummy!! I gave up on caesar dressings - can't find one that tastes even halfway decent that's not loaded with sodium and fat!
February 10, 2011 9:38 AM
I have these books called Eat This, Not That for when I go out. Turns out they add sugar or honey to make the wheat bread taste better. They compared the Market Fresh Roast Turkey and Swiss(710 calories, 30 grams of fat/8 sat, 1,680 mg sodium) with the Arby's Melt (298 calories, 12 grams of fat/4sat, 922 mg sodium).
February 10, 2011 9:38 AM
Check out "Food, Inc." on Netflix or at Blockbuster. That will give you your answer. =)
February 10, 2011 9:38 AM
Check out "Food, Inc." on Netflix or at Blockbuster. That will give you your answer. =)
February 10, 2011 9:40 AM
Also, most restaurants use what's called "super premium" products like mayo. It uses the highest fat containing ingredients, and is higher fat than you'll ever find in a grocery store. (That's why it tastes better. Lets face it, if it didn't, you wouldn't pay for it.) Mayo, ketchup, basically anything that isn't a vegetable, think of it as at least twice as many calories as what you have at home. Same with bread, anything fried. But lets not focus on negative, you did probably make the best choice available going for the turkey. Just keep in mind, when you go out, you're really eating twice what you think you are.


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