Whether it’s been ingrained in us by cultural nostalgia or family tradition, we associate fast food places with the crispy, the tender, and the oily.
The Good, The Bad, And The Oily
It’s a Friday after the 5 PM bell rings. School is out and the weekend is in! Groups of harried students flock to malls and make their way to the nearest fried chicken place boasting unlimited servings of rice. Perhaps it’s a Sunday afternoon right after morning mass, where parents choose to treat their children to a snack of french fries, nuggets and chocolate sundae. Or maybe it’s the birthday celebration of an officemate when the team gets to feast on barbecue and palabok with chicharon toppings.
While there’s nothing wrong with a freshly-fried piece of chicken accompanied by white rice steeped in hot gravy, the body needs a balanced meal. Though we’ve come to connote healthy meals with empty wallets, did you know that fast food can be both affordable and nutritional?
Where did all the fast food begin?
Fast food was invented for people who are constantly on-the-go and can’t wait that long. Before the 18th century, restaurants only catered to people who were visiting the town or passing by. While inns and taverns served travelers, locals usually went out to drink coffee in the afternoons or alcoholic beverages in the evenings. People weren’t used to eating out for fun.
When McDonald’s applied the assembly-line system in food preparation in 1948, food production was made to be semi-automated and assembled in real-time. Other restaurants soon followed suit, resulting in the fast food system that we know and experience today.
At present, efficient food preparation extends to home deliveries on pizza nights or birthday celebrations. Gone are the days when we rely solely on family members or house help to cook our next meal.
Giving healthy fast food a shot
Today, fast food includes a number of healthier choices that people can choose from. When we say “fast food”, it doesn’t have to be limited to food that’s deep-fried in fat. Others are steamed, baked, grilled, or boiled—giving you the nutrients you need without the added calories.
As we celebrate National Fast Food Day, here are some healthier options to get your fill:
After their rebrand in 2016, Plato Wraps has gone for a healthier menu. Their classic Beef Gyros wrap has bits of beef and freshly chopped cucumbers, beautifully wrapped in flatbread. The veggie-meat combo gives the perfect dose Vitamin A and protein for someone on a quick break.
If you’re running late for work and would like to try something more substantial than a cup of coffee, Go! Salads offer green smoothies that are packed with fibers and healthy sugars. Their Breakfast Smoothie is a blend of apple, banana, cinnamon, oats, coco sugar, and soy milk, giving your body a boost of energy without the caffeine.
Tapa King is your home away from home, cooking up some of the best breakfast meals even during lunchtime. While tapa is an option for your noontime meal, their Pork Sinigang is packed with vitamin A, lycopene, and protein. This is your classic sinigang with pork, tomatoes, radish, and kangkong, swimming in a sour gabi broth. This meal is served with plain rice, completing your food pyramid.
The next time you go out with your family, check the menu for healthier options. You’ll never know—they might just end up tasting better than your usual picks.
Looking for more healthy choices? Download the foodpanda app today!