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Nutrition

How Eating Out Can Kill You and Your Budget

We all know fast food isn’t good for you. Thanks to movies like Supersize Me, we know the ill effects that a burger and fries can have on the human body. But what about food at the more “upscale” eateries like Chili’s and Ruby Tuesdays? Are they better or worse than fast food?

Come to find out they’re worse. Way worse. Over at CNN.com they’ve done a report on the calorie content on some of the items served at Ruby Tuesday’s. According to the report, one Ruby Tuesday Colossal Burger has the calorie content equivalent to five McDonald’s Quarter Pounder with cheese. Five!
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OK, so the burger probably has lots of calories. That’s a given. What about some of the more “healthy” dishes. Take a Ruby Tuesday’s pasta dish served with broccoli and cream sauce. Pasta and broccoli. It has to be good for you, right? Wrong. One dish has has over 2,000 calories in it. You could eat two steaks, two potatoes, and two Cesar salads and still not reach the amount of calories in this pasta dish.

So, eating out is not so healthy. What frugal lessons can we take from this?

  • When you go out to eat, don’t eat the whole portion in one sitting. As soon as you get your plate, half it, and put one half in a box to take home. You can get an extra meal or two out of that other half.
  • Split a plate with someone else. You cut the calories and and the bill in half.
  • Eat out less. You’ll trim your waistline, while keeping your wallet fat.
  • Skip the soda. You’ll save about $1.50 and avoid consuming extra sugar.