We all eat fast food, especially when we’re busy taking kids to school, sports and activities. Being on the go so often makes a drive-thru very tempting. A little bit of fast food is okay, but it can get out of hand real quick. So, here are 4 ways to eat less fast food, even when you’re a busy parent.
1. Choose higher quality fast food restaurants, and stick to it. All fast food is not created equal. Pay attention to food quality, overall cleanliness and customer service when you eat on the go, and only eat from places that excel in all of those categories (this will narrow things down real quick – trust me).
2. Plan ahead. I know, I know. It’s not always easy to plan ahead when things get hectic. But deciding which nights you’ll eat out for dinner each week can really help you eat out less. At our house Tuesday evenings are busy because my son has soccer practice. So on Tuesdays we eat Chick-Fil-A for dinner at the soccer field before practice starts. We also eat burgers once and pizza once on weekends. Having 3 fast food meals per week gives our family a few fun treats to look forward to each week without being excessive.
3. Make your own fast food. Have taco night, burger night or pizza night at home by making these foods yourself. This way you can add some extra veggies to the burgers, use lean turkey meat for your tacos, or use fresh, healthier ingredients on your pizzas. Dinners don’t always have to be chicken, rice and veggies. If you make some of your favorite “fun” foods at home, you won’t feel the need for fast food as often.
4. Take snacks with you everywhere. You probably already do this if you have children under the age of 6. But don’t forget to pack something for yourself, as well. A 150 calorie nutrition bar, a little baggie of almonds, some snack crackers or a banana can help calm your entire family’s tummies while you’re out and about. It’s almost impossible to get a healthy snack at most fast food joints.
You can do this, parents. If you follow these tips and have enough self control to drive BY, not THRU, the fast food restaurants surrounding you, your entire family will be better off.