While we often think of fast food as the pinnacle of ill health, it turns out that consumers are more likely to overeat at big restaurant chains such as Nando’s, Hungry Horse and Harvester, according to a study published in BMJ.
In an effort to study the link between eating out and obesity, researchers at the University of Liverpool analyzed 13,500 meals from fast food chains and restaurant chains.
An average main meal at Nando’s contains 1,019 calories, compared to 726 at McDonald’s, while mHungry Horse meals contained an average of 1,358 calories, compared to 987 in KFC meals.
On average, a restaurant burger meal contained 414 more calories than a fast food restaurant equivalent, while a restaurant salad meal contained 142 more calories than the fast food equivalent.
Despite fast food eating less calories than chain restaurants, many meals have exceeded healthy calorie limits.
Public Health England recommends that Britons eat 600 calories for lunch and dinner. However, only one in 10 meals from both fast food vendors and chain restaurants qualified.
Dr Eric Robinson, lead author of the study, told the BBC he believes the food industry must change.
He said: âIt is very clear what the food industry needs to do. They need to act more responsibly and reduce the number of calories they serve.
He also admitted that the research probably underestimated the calories consumed in restaurants.
âWe don’t know the energy intake, but ‘cleaning the plate’ is a common behavior. Our analysis did not include drinks, entrees, desserts or sides. “
Obesity is a growing problem in the UK, which is now considered the third largest country in Europe.
Simple lifestyle changes to lose weight include getting more sleep, paying more attention to food labels, and exercising daily.
The practice of eat emotionally can also be a trigger for gaining weight.
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