Counting Calories

September 24th, 2010 | Simcha Weinstein | 1 Comment »

There has certainly been a great deal of attention given to the new healthcare bill that passed earlier this year. One aspect of the bill that has actually received very little attention and may ultimately be one of the most visible effects of the bill is a menu labeling provision for chain restaurants with more than 20 locations. This provision requires the qualifying chains to post the caloric content of each item, as well as the total calories for their combo meals. The postings will be seen on the menus, menu boards and the drive-through menu kiosks. This part of the bill is expected to go into effect next year.

Just for fun (or actually more for a scary effect) below is a list of dishes, (courtesy of the Washington Post), that contain 2,000 calories, or close to that. Keep in mind that 2,000 calories is the recommended daily food intake put forth by the USDA. Pretty astonishing in these dishes is the amount of salt and fat that is used. Generally, using large amounts of salt and fat are inexpensive methods for enhancing the flavor of food. Enjoy your calorie counting:

Quizno’s Large Tuna Melt Sub Sandwich.
The numbers: 1,520 calories, 101 grams of fat, 21 grams of saturated fat, 2,020 milligrams sodium.
Equivalent of eating: More than a stick of butter’s worth of fat.

Chipotle’s Chicken Burrito, filled with rice, pinto beans, corn salsa, cheese, sour cream and guacamole, accompanied by a side of chips.
The numbers: 1,750 calories, 79.5 grams of fat, 23 grams of saturated fat, 2,750 milligrams of sodium.
Equivalent of eating: The calories in more than nine chicken soft tacos at Taco Bell.

Applebee’s New England Fish and Chips.
The numbers: 1,910 calories, 137 grams fat, 24 grams saturated fat, 3,150 milligrams of sodium.
Equivalent of eating: The fat in almost a pound of cheddar cheese.

Chili’s Big Mouth Bites, four mini burgers topped with jalapeño ranch dressing.
The numbers: 1,930 calories, 31 grams of saturated fat, 4,400 milligrams sodium.
Equivalent of eating: The calories of around 25 eggs.

Outback Steakhouse’s Full Rack of Baby Back Ribs served with Aussie fries.
The numbers: 1,936 calories, 133 grams of fat, 56 grams of saturated fat, 2,741 milligrams of sodium.
Equivalent of eating: The fat grams in 20 tablespoons of salad dressing.

Domino’s Bread Bowl Pasta.
The numbers: One bread bowl, which Domino’s nutritional information counts as two servings, contains 1,340 to 1,470 calories, 48 to 56 grams of fat, 21 to 27 grams of saturated fat, 65 to 115 grams of fiber, 1,830 to 2,860 milligrams of sodium.
Equivalent of eating: The fiber in about 16 to 29 servings of oatmeal.

P.F. Chang’s China Bistro’s Double Pan-fried Noodles with a combination of meats. Although this is one entree, the company counts it as four servings since it totals 36 ounces.
The numbers: 1,820 calories, 84 grams of fat, 8 grams saturated fat, 7,692 milligrams of sodium.
Equivalent of eating: The sodium in 70 tablespoons of blue cheese dressing.

The Greene Turtle’s Boneless Wings, which includes 16 wings in “We Mean Hot” sauce, served with blue cheese dressing and celery sticks.
The numbers: 1,963 calories, 153 grams of fat, 30 grams of saturated fat, 10,877 milligrams of sodium.
Equivalent of eating: The sodium in 52 large orders of french fries.

Uno Chicago Grill’s Chicago Classic Deep-dish Individual Pizza, which is topped with sausage, tomato sauce and cheese.
The numbers: 2,310 calories, 165 grams of fat, 54 grams saturated fat, 4,920 milligrams of sodium.
Equivalent of eating: The fat in 45 strips of bacon.

The Cheesecake Factory’s Pasta Carbonara.
The numbers: 2,500 calories, 85 grams of saturated fat.
Equivalent of eating: The saturated fat in about five cups of half-and-half cream.

Yikes! And we wonder why we have an obesity epidemic!