What’s the Healthiest Thing to Eat at McDonald’s?

by Elle Penner, MPH, RD
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What’s the Healthiest Thing to Eat at McDonald’s?

With 14,155 restaurants in the United States alone, and 22,744 additional locations outside of the U.S., McDonald’s is arguably the most well-known fast-food chain in the world. And, if you’re taking a road trip, this summer it can be difficult to resist the siren call of fast-food convenience.

While known for its burgers, fries and shakes, you don’t need to blow your calorie budget on a Big Mac Extra Value Meal. These five options, at 420 calories or less, complete with ordering tips from a dietitian, can help you eat healthier the next time you find yourself under those golden arches.

HEALTHIEST BREAKFASTS

EGG MCMUFFIN

Nutrition stats: 300 calories, 12g fat, 30g carbohydrate, 2g fiber, 3g sugar, 18g protein

Why it made the cut: Coming in right at 300 calories, this breakfast sandwich contains 18 grams of satiating protein and 2 grams of fiber.

Dietitian’s tip: Opting out of the processed cheese slashes 50 calories and 190 milligrams of sodium. Skipping the Canadian bacon spares you another 200 milligrams of sodium but you also lose 4 grams of protein.

FRUIT AND MAPLE OATMEAL, HOLD THE BROWN SUGAR & DRIED FRUIT

Nutrition stats: 190 calories, 4g fat, 33g carbs, 4g fiber, 3g sugar, 6g protein

Why it made the cut: Topped with fresh apples and a splash of cream, this unsweetened oatmeal provides 4 grams of fiber and only 3 grams of sugar. At 190 calories it makes a great light breakfast or snack option.

Dietitian’s tip: Make sure you ask for oatmeal without brown sugar (it exists) and skip the dried fruit to slash 120 calories and a whopping 30 grams of unnecessary sugar. Add a little more staying power to this breakfast by asking for a side of scrambled eggs. You won’t find them on the menu but rumor has it they are offered. One side of scrambled eggs adds 140 calories, 9g fat, 1g carbs and 13g of quality protein.


READ MORE > 5 LOW-SUGAR BREAKFAST OPTIONS


HEALTHIEST LUNCHES & DINNERS

BACON RANCH GRILLED CHICKEN SALAD WITH 1/2 PACKET RANCH DRESSING

Nutrition stats: 420 calories, 22g fat, 14g carbs, 4g fiber, 6g sugar, 43g protein

Why it made the cut: At just over 400 calories, this salad offers 4 grams fiber and 43 grams of protein, not to mention a whole lot of nutrient-rich veggies.

Dietitian’s tip: Each packet of McDonald’s Newman’s Own Ranch Dressing contains 200 calories so it’s best to use less if you can. Rather than drizzling ranch all over your salad, load up your fork with greens and dip them into the dressing instead. Half packet should be plenty if you use this technique — and you won’t miss the rest.

SOUTHWEST GRILLED CHICKEN SALAD WITH 1/2 PACKET SOUTHWEST DRESSING, HOLD THE CILANTRO-LIME GLAZE

Nutrition stats: 360 calories, 13g fat, 24g carbs, 5g fiber, 7g sugar, 38g protein

Why it made the cut: With 25% of your daily intake for fiber, this veggie-filled salad is the highest in fiber of all McDonald’s salads and provides plenty of satiating protein, too.

Dietitian’s tip: As is, this salad is fairly high in sugar, but simply asking to hold the cilantro-lime glaze will cut 8g carbs and more than one teaspoon (5g) of added sugar. Use the fork-dip trick mentioned above and you can enjoy the creamy southwest salad dressing for half of the calories, or ask for the lighter balsamic vinaigrette which has just 35 calories per packet in contrast to 120 calories in the southwest dressing.

PICO GUACAMOLE GRILLED CHICKEN SANDWICH ON A SESAME SEED BUN, HOLD THE CHEESE

Nutrition Stats: 420 calories, 14g fat, 38g carbs, 3g fiber, 7g sugar, 36g protein

Why it made the cut: At 420 calories this is a hearty, protein-packed sandwich that also brings some healthy fats to the table thanks to the guacamole topping. The lettuce and pico de gallo add a few extra veggies.

Dietitian’s tip: You’ll get all of the goodness for 100 fewer calories simply by ordering this sandwich with a sesame seed bun instead of the artisan roll it’s typically served on and asking to hold the processed cheese. To get it under 400 calories, skip the buttermilk ranch sauce to shave off another 50 calories and 5 grams of fat.

Of course it’s not the healthiest thing to eat at McDonalds but, if a burger and fries is really what you’re craving, you can always get the cheeseburger kids meal with fries and apple slices for just 430 calories instead of the 1,000 calorie Big Mac Extra Value Meal.

Nutrition note: Most fast foods, even the healthier options, are very high in sodium. To balance things out, try choosing lower-sodium foods at other meals and snacks throughout the rest of the day.

Related

  • Jeremy Maynard

    Egg White Delight
    260 Calories
    8g Total Fat (12% DV)
    29g Total Carbs (10% DV)
    16g Protein
    Calories From Fat: 70
    Saturated Fat: 4.5g (22% DV)
    Trans Fat: 0g
    Cholesterol: 35mg (11% DV)
    Sodium: 750mg (31% DV)
    Dietary Fiber: 2g (7% DV)
    Sugars: 3g
    Vitamin A: 180IU (4% DV)
    Vitamin C: 1mg (0% DV
    Calcium: 150mg (15% DV)
    Iron: 2mg (10% DV)

    Fruit and Yogurt Parfait
    150 Calories
    2 grams Total Fat: (3% DV)
    30 gramsTotal Carbs: (10% DV)
    4 grams Protien
    Saturated Fat: 1 grams1g (5% DV)
    Trans Fat: 0 grams0g
    Cholesterol: 5 milligram5mg (2% DV)
    Sodium: 75 milligram75mg (3% DV)
    Dietary Fiber: 1 grams1g (3% DV)
    Sugars: 22 grams22g
    Vitamin A: 60 IU60IU (2% DV)
    Vitamin C: 15 milligram15mg (25% DV)
    Calcium: 100 milligram100mg (10% DV)
    Iron: 0.5 milligram0.5mg (4% DV)

    • Mtchelle

      These are great options for those who haven’t reached the macronutrient way of eating.
      Thanks!!

    • Melissa Steinert Sheppard

      That egg white delight is awfully high in sodium! As a person with chronic high blood pressure, no matter what my weight, I could never eat that much sodium in one meal.

      • davedave12

        sorry everything in the world is not made for you

        • David Claude Warlick

          The so called egg whites are not made for my egg-white-loving wife either. The MCD egg whites have far more than the singtle ingredient that one would expect (cracked egg with yellow removed by suction).

          • alwweb

            Ummm, according to the McDonald’s web site, they are 100% egg whites and nothing else is listed as part of the ingredients for the egg whites. Now, I do believe that the egg whites are not freshly cracked and extracted, but this happens in a plant and the egg whites are then refrigerated or frozen in a liquid form until used, but they are still just egg whites. They might add flavoring when cooking them, but I haven’t a clue on this part. Like others said, everyone has their own preferences, but I think the egg white delight is a great way to start a day when I’m dieting.

          • David Claude Warlick

            I stand corrected. You are correct that the website’s nutrition lists only egg whites in the egg whites. That is great. The “egg white” cartons at grocery stores are rarely if ever egg whites, nor do I care since eggs are so cheap it is easy to suck out the yellow (by squeezing a PET bottle on top of the egg). Perhaps MCD has JIT delivery so its egg whites need no preservatives. Panera also claims to be healthy, but their cooks are told to add “3 shakes of salt & pepper” to morning meals so if I want the listed nutrition, I have to ask the cook to make the meals according to specifications, not according to the company manuals. It is possible that MCD has cooking manuals that differ from the listed nutrition. Regardless, as an MCD stockholder, I’m delighted to learn that some of the products are losing their chemical additives. Thanks, alwweb!

        • Dale Jackson

          Davedave12 now YOUR speaking like a 12 year old.

          • davedave12

            your comment makes no sense

        • GaelsFan

          Seriously??? What’s wrong with you? Everyone is free to comment here.

          • davedave12

            MYOB SFB

      • So for you, that wouldn’t work. It does work for lots of people, though, so it doesn’t become a totally unviable solution in general because it doesn’t work for one specific individual.

        I have successfully lowered my previously high blood pressure through regular exercise and an overall better diet than I ate before. My doctor has approved the Egg White Delight breakfast if I’m on the run (as long as i make sure my drink is coffee or water as opposed to the sugary juice or soda, which let’s face it, it’s almost always coffee). At 500ish calories for the full meal, it’s a nice healthy way to start the day in a hurry. I just have to watch my sodium for the rest of my meals and it’s no problem.

        Even people who share an issue – high blood pressure – can benefit from different solutions.

      • LoriS

        I’m waiting for someone to blame this on Obama.

    • GaelsFan

      The Egg White Delight is my go-to breakfast at McDonald’s. I know there’s concern from some commenters about the sodium content, but if I’m watching sodium intake, I make my own food at home so I can control it. I’m not a huge fan of salt, so an very occasional indulgence like McD’s doesn’t hurt.

  • Simone Howley

    Are you kidding me???

    I can’t believe you guys have posted this. And it was backed by a dietitian.

    I would usually just shake my head in disbelief and get on with my day but this definitely needs a comment.

    You have to know that nutrition it not just about calories in calories out. It’s not just macro nutrients…

    ITS WHAT IS DONE TO FOOD!

    McDonald’s is not real food. We all know it is so highly processed and tampered with.

    Please use this platform for helping people make good choices. And making a calorie satisfactory choice in a place where food causes the damage to the body is not upholding that obligation to your followers.

    • Jax Weber

      Amen Simone! I can’t believe that anyone today, with what we currently know about the dangers of eating meat, dairy or eggs would advocate for eating at McD’s! Is she sponsored by McDonald’s and the meat, egg and dairy industry to extol the virtues of eating crappy, disease causing food? What this alleged nutritionist omitted was that people rarely order just a sandwich; they usually top up their calorie dense, nutrient deficient “meal” with fries and a sugary drink! One trip through the drive through will put most people at 3/4s of their entire days caloric intake. Do yourselves a favour and watch What the Health on Netflix.

      • Vanessa

        What, specifically, are the dangers of meats, eggs and dairy?!?!

        • Jax Weber

          Hypertension, heart disease, cancer, diabetes, obesity, osteoporosis….to name a few!

          • Dumb

            You are stupid

          • Marco Alzapiedi

            And there it is.
            Always guaranteed to get abused around post 7 or 8.

          • davedave12

            Jax is so boring and wrong it is hard to not be abusive

          • Jax Weber

            You are the one that replied, “you are stupid ” to the post. It appears that you might be the stupid one if that’s what you have to offer to the conversation!

          • TheVicky

            Jax. How about egg whites? I eat lots of them. Real egg whites (not egg beaters, or carton ‘egg whites’) I crack eggs and omit yolks. Are they dangerous? I ask because I’ve cut out meat aside from fish. So, for me to achieve protien intake I eat lots of fish and egg whites!

          • Jax Weber

            Protein comes from plants, period. Animals eat plants and that is how it gets into their tissues that humans ingest. You can cut out the middle man (meat) by eating the plant. I am happy to hear that you don’t eat the cholesterol and saturated fat laden yolk. It is designed to grow a chick to maturity in 21 days. Fish is not as good for consumption as we are misled to believe (shocker). Because of bioaccumulation, larger fish in the food chain are high in saturated fat, cholesterol, PCBs and Mercury. Please eat in moderation or not at all. We actually eat far too much protein in our western diet. There is not one documented case of protein deficiency in a first world country. It is prevalent, though, in areas of food scarcity and famine.

          • davedave12

            there is no plant that has all 7 essential amino acids — meat does

          • Don’t discount yolks – they also contain a huge amount of the fat-soluble vitamins that we get some eating eggs. if you only ever eat egg whites, you won’t get those vitamins in nearly the amounts you assume you will.

            Especially for pregnant or nursing women – if you’re eating eggs to get B12 and folate, you have to eat the yolk or you’re basically getting nothing at all.

          • Jax Weber

            Watch ‘What the Health’ on Netflix. Find out where your food comes from and then decide what is best for you. It’s really tough with all the information and misinformation out there. This is intentionally done to confuse the consumer into not knowing what to believe. My journey into a purely whole food, plant based lifestyle began with a challenge to not eat dairy for one week. I felt so much better in 3 days (apart from the detoxification and withdrawal) that I went completely plant based. I am 20lbs lighter, have glowing blemish free skin, and am no longer dogged by chronic pain, inflammation and exhaustion. Try it for one month, if you don’t feel amazingly better, what have you lost?

          • David Claude Warlick

            Fish is healthy but it is not sustainable. We need to give the oceans a rest.

          • davedave12

            NO eating too much of anything is not good — eggs and meat are just fine as long as I live I will enjoy an occasional steak or milk shake I will never be a boring loser like you Jax — 98% of the people who live to be over 100 years old eat meat and dairy and eggs

      • Dan Franchini

        So in your world everybody should be vegetarians or vegan then?

        • Jax Weber

          I would be content to live in a world that ate more fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, legumes. And less meat, eggs and dairy! I am seeing an increasing number of obese teenagers, adolescents and children walk through my ER doors, and it’s not from consuming too many vegetables. French fries are not a vegetable!

          • Dan Franchini

            In my experience, it is more quantity of these foods. I still eat the same goods as when I was 90lbs heavier, I just eat less of them.

          • Jax Weber

            That’s awesome!

          • I think that if all we did as a society was cut down on portion sizes, we’d collectively drop about 35% of the obesity rate.

          • davedave12

            neither is corn a vegetable– corn is a grain like wheat or rice — everything I learned as common sense when I was a kid 40 years ago is still pretty true except that corn is not a vegetable

          • I think a mix of cutting things like fries down to “sometimes foods” – the VERY occasional thing – and ALSO adding more general motion into our daily lives would be the best change we could make!

            French fries won’t make oyu obese if you eat them once a month, or even once a week, if your diet is otherwise healthy and your exercise level is good. We have kids trapped indoors all day long, trapped sitting at desks for eight hours with no allowed range of motion, then coming home to sit in front of a TV screen. There’s nowhere for calories to go.

          • Deplorable Displaced Texan

            Fries are never evil.

      • Coach Don

        The only danger associated with eating meats and/or eggs is in combining them with breads, pastas, starches and other foods high in glycemic index. Sugar kills, not meat or eggs. There are numerous studies out to prove it.

        • Jax Weber

          Sugar does not cause atherosclerosis, diabetes or obesity Coach! It is a carbohydrate and is either stored as glycogen in muscles and the liver, or is burned as energy. Fat from animal products kills people, sugar is just a scapegoat for something far more sinister and deadly. Fat from animal products enters ones cells, leaving no room for circulating blood glucose to enter. High circulating blood glucose leads to insulin resistance, obesity, diabetes and diabesity! Find me a study that is not funded by the animal agriculture industry, touting meat, eggs and dairy as healthy and not disease causing, and I will happily read it. I am not sponsored by big pharma, the meat, egg, dairy, fruit or veg industry; I just want people to be healthy.

          • robertl30

            um Jax, Sugar is a carbohydrate. So, yeah it does cause diabetes.

          • Jax Weber

            So you’re saying carbohydrates cause Diabetes? All carbs or just sugar?

          • robertl30

            All things in moderation. All carbs break down into glucose ultimately. The more complex a carb (think broccoli) the more energy the body expends breaking it down. It has a higher glycemic index. Jelly beans are sucrose. They’re pretty unhealthy, but whole grains are more complex, so they’re not as bad. The best diet is one based on lean meats, vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch, no sugar.

          • Anonymous

            When you say “my ER doors”, I really hope you are referring to the ER in which you work as a janitor or security guard, because the thought of a doctor or ANY medical professional telling people that sugar does not cause diabetes is absolutely terrifying. And even worse you are implying that sugar is not a carbohydrate! I understand that everyone has their own beliefs and values and that is perfectly fine, but it is not okay to shove them down someone else’s throat. Furthermore, if you are in the medical field you have a moral obligation to to inform people of the FACTS, NOT your off the wall conspiracy theories.

      • davedave12

        stupid comment – the article did not recommend soda or fires go back to your ER and clean the floors

      • Tim Rortvedt

        What the health is made in sponsorship of the vegan lifestyle. Please. Eating meat is not bad for. Get over it. We were hunters from the beginning. If you don’t want to eat meat fine but shut up with the fact it is bad for you.

      • Sam

        Such true words Jax. I suggest everyone go watch WHAT THE HEALTH too. It changed me instantly. I’ve been vegan ever since I watched it

    • Eli

      I think it’s a little unrealistic to expect that people who already ARE EATING McDonald’s or other fast foods to just simply stop those habits. I think it is fair to point them to best options within the foods they already choose to eat. I don’t believe people just stop and move away from these types of foods over night. So, maybe consider that not everyone abides by your way of eating, life, or thinking and it could be helpful to others struggling with breaking free of fast food chains.

      • Pi Pi

        I agree. People are not going to stop eating at McDonald’s cold turkey. Give them a few options, but the goal is; to eventually get them away from it….baby steps. I don’t think scare tactics work on the human race anyway….

        • Zane West

          i don’t think it is un-reasonible to stop cold turkey, we are all capable of responsible decisions. Jamie Oliver’s Pink Slime video did the trick for me. It was just the right sort of motivation i needed.

          • Kate K

            You know the pink slime was a hoax, right?

        • Sallie Seay

          My kids love it. But that doesn’t mean I am going to fill them up with it daily. We also make our own veggie wraps with sauteed bell peppers and onions with mushrooms in olive oil. We do however, sprinkle cheese on it. Even if we stop in for breakfast on occasion, we choose a lighter menu for lunch and dinner.

      • Brandon Green

        I disagree, I was a fast food junkie, I mean 5 of the 7 days a week it was fast food or processed food. Yet, for the last 30 days, I got my hands on the Whole30 plan and I have yet to go back. I’m with the original comment in that, you need to break free from the bad food habits.

    • Brad Martin

      Maybe you could tone the aggressive attitude down a bit? Things like their grilled chicken breast are real. Also, their egg mcmuffin and English muffins are 100% real. I’ve cracked the eggs myself, so that’s always a good option.

    • Ted Haines

      I find it hard to see fault in an egg white delight? It is a real cracked/cooked egg on a toasted english muffin. Cheese may be slightly questionable, but for the majority it is a very good alternative when on the run.

      • Debra Belz

        The eggs they use are fed with chemicals and raised inhumanly. Actually not a real egg. The cheese has nothing to do with how real cheese is made. It never decomposes and our bodies can’t process it. It just clogs our arteries.

        • davedave12

          “it never decomposes in our bodies” she blinded me with science

        • The egg whites used in the Egg White Delight are additive-free.

          Eggs used in other meals include preservatives and other additives. McDonald’s is planning to phase this out, but the additive-free egg whites were their experiment in that.

      • Deplorable Displaced Texan

        Maybe trolls lurking in forums find fault with it…..

    • Di

      This start of the article talked traveling and giving into the convenience of fast food while on the road. Chill out. Not like they said, “Hey, here’s what you should eat everyday at McDonalds'” While I tend not to eat there, I’m sure this is beneficial information to some.

      • Georgina

        For goodness sake, this is redicules! chill people!!! Do you all think you’re going to die if you eat there once in awhile? Don’t be so damn dramatic!!! Lol!!! Mc Donald’s is Fast food and shouldn’t be an everyday staple in anyones daily diet. For breakfast if we’re in a rush I get an egg McMuffin/no cheese… . if I’m in a hurry in the afternoon I get a kids burger & a plain ice tea. I’m not a big fan of fast food, maybe once every few months, but if I’m starving and busy I’ll have it. If anyone thinks their going there to get a healthy meal, sorry, you’re not. They know kids love their food & parents will take them there, that’s why they cater to kids. I remember that growing up.. but it was rare…

        • Paul Dollimore

          They don’t cater to kids – they actively market to them from their earliest age…!! They manipulate something called ‘Pester Power’ that kids use to force their parents to give in to their whining. It sickness me that more and more of us are dying from disease directly attributed to poor food choices. Kids don’t die from it today, but in the long run, they will develop all sorts of diseases, obesity, and a multitude of health problems.

    • Mary Jane Myers

      Do you watch movies only in Black & White, as welll? OF COURSE McDonald’s isn’t a healthy eater’s first choice! But when on the road, for example, there’s a McDonald’s at every exit, and this article has helped me realize that I can do much better at making healthy choices, even when McDonald’s is the only option for miles. Thank you MyFitnessPal!

    • Radical1

      It’s one thing to be mindful of the food we eat and to make better choices based on individual dietary wants and needs, but it’s another to demonize all but the “healthiest” meal options.
      As with all things in life, occasional indulgence isn’t a sin…and it’s information like this that helps ameliorate the damage.

    • davedave12

      so what do they do to the eggs and the fresh fruit — you sound like one of those “moms” who listens to bleach blond silicone filled ex-playboy models instead of MD’s

    • Nikki Good

      Simone, I am pretty sure they aren’t advocating eating MCD every day, I think they even specifically mentioned road trips. And if you are in a bind and there aren’t many options, then this article is helping people make better choices.

      And if someone reading this article doesn’t understand how eating MCD all the time is bad for them, they probably need a little more help than MyFitness pal

    • I’m curious. Simone doesn’t tell us what her professional background is, that makes her an authority on food, or McDonald’s. There are some healthy choices that can be had at McDonald’s. You can order “Grilled Chicken Breast Filet” from the Ala Carte menu on their cash register. It’s basically the Artisan Grilled Chicken sandwich, minus the buns and all the bad stuff. Also, order Ala Carte, and the price is a lot cheaper too. Also, the salad mentioned in this article is a good choice. The bacon is so well-done, that I don’t think there is any fat left in it. Order it with the grilled chicken. It’s a winner. Randy McDaniels, TLC.

    • Natasha Williams

      Clearly the article isn’t saying hey everyone, go eat McDonald’s!! But some people are busy and don’t have time to cook at home. I work full time, and go to school full time. I don’t always have time to cook so it’s nice being presented with options. On the days you’re starving and are about to say f*** it and order a large fattening meal you can think about the healthier choices and go with that.

      • Paul Dollimore

        “it’s nice being presented with options” You call McD options? wow. blinkered much.

    • Kevin K

      “Real food” is something that is a source of macronutrients (calories) and micronutrients (vitamins and such). If your body can digest it, it’s food. No matter what you think of the method of preparation or preservation.

      Get off your high horse.

    • Paul Dollimore

      Totally agree Simone. I was DISGUSTED to read this headline. Health & McD in the same sentence…WTF???!!!
      We all know that McD and Health are polar opposites. MFP has some very bad blog posts, this is the worst I have seen so far. Others have been promoting eggs, which we know in 2017 cause heart disease. No.1 killer in America & Europe is Heart disease. Eggs = Cholesterol bombs = Clogged arteries = Heart Disease = Avoid at all costs.
      The author of this article should never work in the industry again. Shame on her. McD obv. paid her.

    • GaelsFan

      Whoahhhhh Trigger….. not everyone obsesses over every micro and macro nutrient they put into their bodies. I LOVE fast food, and I do eat it…. maybe once or twice a month. There are some who actually can balance an occasional unhealthy indulgence and go on to live long, healthy lives. Like most who subscribe to this forum, I make my own meals from scratch, consume very little processed food, exercise regularly. And like most people on here (thankfully!), I don’t try to insinuate my thoughts views on everyone else. Have a nice day!

  • Timothea Morris

    Excellent post! Thank you! By following this exact routine…. I’ve lost over 100 pounds! With my busy schedule… sometimes it’s hard to stop at snail moving places for healthier alternatives!

    Thanks again!

    • Glenn

      What routine? Eating at MCDs? That’s awesome!

  • Julie DeYoung

    Great article. I had already figured out the Egg McMuffin and cheeseburger options just from reviewing the calorie counts but these tips for other options are very helpful. There is “real food” at fast food places, you just need to choose it.

    • John

      That was an excellent back and forth convo and the only thing that needs to be added is; fuck Obama

      • Deplorable Displaced Texan

        That’s always the best ending to that conversation.

  • robertl30

    Glad you found something that works for you. I follow a Paleo diet (see “Wheat Belly” book). I eat 50% protein, 25% fat, 25% carbs. I try to keep carb intake limited to fruit and high GI veggies like sweet potatoes. Regardless of the macros you follow the most important thing is to eat the appropriate amount of calories. Stick to a whole food diet; avoid processed foods which are high in salt and sugar.

  • Told You So

    I’ve noticed most of the items at McDonald’s contain sugar. I am guessing it is added to give taste. However, the Chicken McNuggets do not contain any sugar. The downfall is the large amount of sodium.

    • David Claude Warlick

      MCD needs preservatives for shelf life. MCD can add vinegar, sugar, or salt and still be natural, or some weird chemicals. It is a mystery to me and the MCD CEO why MCD needs all the chemicals since MCD does have very frequent re-supplies to each franchise. I think the CEO has preservatives under investigation.

  • David O’Brien

    Being on a ketogenic diet, there is not one item on this list that has few enough carbs that I could eat it. Additionally, almost half of the meat served from McDonalds is supplemented with soy, which is not healthy because of the high estrogen levels in it. Bottom line: even though McDonalds is extremely popular and tasty, only two miles from me, and relatively cheap, there is not a single thing that they serve that they make that anyone in my house can eat and still think of as “healthy”.

    • davedave12

      what’s a weirdo-genic diet?

      • Ketogenic diets are designed to put the body into a semi-permanent state of “ketosis”, or burning certain kinds of fat for fuel because there are basically no carbs left to provide energy.

        It works for some people but it’s worth researching, since ketosis can actually be incredibly harmful, especially for diabetics, pre-diabetics and basically anyone with insulin resistance issues.

        For the people it works for, though, it works really, really well. It is a diet I wouldn’t suggest starting unless you’ve had bloodwork done and have no issues come back, or your physician is on board with it.

        • davedave12

          thansks Katie — internet: please feel free to comment on my typos and grammar

      • David O’Brien

        A ketogenic diet is a high-fat, low-carb, and moderate-protein diet that puts your body into a high-fat-burning mode called ketosis.It focuses on eating real food, not processed, and on this diet the main things to eat are meat, cheese, butter, and a narrow selection of veggies. Using this diet, my wife and I have both lost 40+ lbs since Feb, our health has improved, our energy has improved, our cholesterol has dropped, and our quality of life has never been better. Carbs break down into sugar in the body, which the body cannot process, and turns into fat. This is the reason that obesity has become so widespread throughout the world, because people are being told to load up on carbs, and rely on exercise to get rid of fat. What people should do instead, is eat food that the body was designed to break down efficiently, rather than eat whatever they feel like and ignore the fact that their bodies cannot handle it.

        • davedave12

          No one has ever told anyone to load up on carbs — common sense says don’t fill up on bread

    • Teardroplet

      You can ask for sides of any of the meats, chicken, eggs, and bacon. I used to work there and i know all the hacks. Just tell them to put it in a salad bowl so they dont put it in wrappers or nugget boxes.
      If salt is an issue, ask for no seasoning on the beef and chicken thats grilled. That way its guaranteed fresh and healthier.

  • k edman

    Where’s the sodium count? For a lot of people that’s as critical as calories and fat.

  • italia@woh.rr.com

    I am sure she not recommending everybody go out and eat at that place, it’s ok everyone. Do the best you can in your own journey. I probably stop at a McDonalds about every 4 months…… maybe. Usually I’m on the road and starving and ran out of my protein n granola snacks. When I do I get the kids hamburger meal, no cheese, no fries but double apple slices. In fact, I usually eat around the bun as well. Still a lot of sodium & not much protein….not the greatest but it will hold me over till my meeting in that town is done and I can find real food. I usually plan pretty well, but occasionally a flight delay or something messes me up. The Egg White Delight is an easy fast breakfast if you can’t do anything else. Still, it’s fast food so it’s not the greatest choice.

    • Teardroplet

      You can ask for non seasoned meat at mcdonalds. They add salt and pepper at the end of cooking.

    • GaelsFan

      Same here – I bring my own lunch to work just about every day, allowing an indulgence out one day a week, and sometimes not even that! I watch what I eat so I don’t shy away from an occasional fast food indulgence. I refuse to obsess about micro and macronutrients. I exercise and mostly eat right and I’m very content with myself 🙂

  • If you’re going to eat at McDonald’s then forget about the calories.. you don’t come to McD’s for some healthy eating crap lol quit your bs.

    • davedave12

      Why so angry and foul mouthed? The article contains good information, something missing from your comment.

      • Because it’s stupid. If you would go to McDonald’s for some controlled eating then something’s wrong with you. Just prep your own food, you’d save a lot of money and calories too.

        • Told You So

          I think you missed the entire point of the article!

        • davedave12

          You have proven that there is no shortage of angry boring people in the world.

          • This site has proven that there is no shortage of delusional weight watchers in the world.

  • Inebrius

    Why do comment sections bring out the pretentious inner douche in people. LOL I guarantee Simone and Jax wont live any longer than most people that indulge in a McDonalds meal now and again or eat meat, eggs, dairy at every meal. Those that wont live longer have other issues going on that meal choices alone aren’t going to fix. Get over yourselves.. *rolls eyes*

    • David Claude Warlick

      Meal choices are wonderful. What many non-patrons do not understand is why MCD would take simple products like egg whites and oatmeal and complicate them with a long list of added ingredients. KISS would work well for such products. I would return if MCD had eggs with just eggs. oatmeal with just fruits and nuts (no “natural” preservatives), meat with a single ingredient (nothing injected such as salt water), bread without preservatives, etc.

      • Shawn

        They do it for shelf life. if they could simply it they would, those “extra” ingredients cost money. It’s how they are able to remain low cost by having the employees at the location do as little as possible

        • Arthur Russell

          If it was fresh they wouldn’t have to be concerned about shelf life.

  • Donna Brassea Ransdell

    A lot of the McDonald’s will NOT “hold the brown sugar” any more. I have tried at several of them, mostly the smaller ones located inside WalMart and convenience stores, and none were able to change the oatmeal. In that case, the Egg McMuffin is the better deal, calorie-wise.

  • Zane West

    I cant believe this is even a conversation, i have a hard time putting healthy and Mcdonalds in the same sentence, this is an organisation where fries have 19 ingredients. Calories are not necessarily the enemy. I also cant understand the reasoning around removing the dried fruit, it seems that the recommendations are around cutting calories with no regard for what sort of poison you are putting into your body.

  • Kent Whitney

    For me, it is much easier to just drive past fast food dives and extend my life in a healthier way. While traveling I take along carrot sticks, apples, raw almonds, bananas… and lots of water!! Okay, boring I know but so are hours & hours working out to burn off all that fast food blubber, LOL!

  • ThinkingAmerica

    We just finished a 2000 mile road trip and had several stops at McDonald’s. Just a suggestion. I am insulin resistant have been for 30+ years and still have normal A1C’s. I watch my carbs. At McDonald’s I will order something like the grilled pico guacamole chicken sandwich (with or without cheese and sauce depending on my calories and food for the day) and a side salad. I toss the bun and put the chicken/pico/guacamole on the side salad and maybe some dressing (but never more than 1/4 of the package) and that is my meal. If the sauce is put on the sandwich, if forgo the dressing. I never eat the fries and drink water. I do eat the McDonald’s salads, but sometimes you need variety.

  • Lawrence Wolfson
  • David Claude Warlick

    Even as a MCD stockholder, I would argue that it is hard to eat healthy at MCD. Both the egg white and the oatmeal mentioned in the article are loaded with chemicals and preservatives (some natural, but still preservatives). I like MCD, but my wife won’t go, partly due to the chemicals and partly due to the loud clientele. The chemicals can be fixed. The existing clientele are profitable, so need no change.

  • John Blackwood

    I often order the McDonalds’ side salad and a grilled chicken breast. I cut up the chicken and put it on top of the salad with 1/2 package of balsamic dressing.

    • italia@woh.rr.com

      Great tip!!

  • Tim Rortvedt

    I’d love to see pictures of all you super healthy people! No meats and never fast food I would expect to see a bunch of God’s

  • Amy

    For the southwest salad, would it be acceptable to hold the southwest dressing and keep the cilantro glaze or ask for half as much as usual? I love this salad but I love the cilantro glaze on it but I don’t know exactly how many calories the glaze contains.

  • Amy

    Also, can I just say… some of you people are just plain pyscho and don’t even tell me you don’t occasionally indulge in an unhealthy food choice once in a while, if not more. Also, I find these options to be great, they are not “unhealthy” to me. Some of you commenting here have some really extreme diets, lets not pretend here. And stop acting holier than thou. Take it somewhere else!

    • Told You So

      Guess what… they will all die, the same as everyone else. Enjoy life a little!

  • bud46628

    What about the Sodium content?

  • Is everyone here white?

  • ImaMe

    If it agrees with you, have at it! Roughly 6 years ago is when slowly nothing agreed with me. Everything gave me diarrhea within an hour, then I was hungry. Doesn’t make much sense to eat there any longer.

  • DD877

    Sausage and Egg Mcmuffin is my favorite breakfast… Southwestern salad and Daily double are my favorite Mickey D Lunches

  • Tina

    The snack wraps are also a healthy choice for anytime of the day!

  • Zeshan Taj Khan

    now that would be the water !

  • Kitty

    To bad this can not be applied to the european McDonalds. They have a different menu…

    • davedave12

      article had nothing to do with Europe

  • Paul Dollimore

    McD and Health in the same sentence = FAIL.

  • Pauline J Jenkins

    Nothing.

  • Ron Seibold

    Best bet it to just drive on by.

  • Anne-Marie Poltorak

    I will order the egg white delight with an extra egg white and no cheese. Don’t eat half the bun and you have a higher protein packed option. Many people also don’t realize they can order the grilled chicken breast by itself. A lot of fast food places will make requested changes – all you have to do is ask.

  • LoLizz

    For all your breakfast sandwich orders ask for them “Dry” or “No Butter”, will save you 30 calories (calories are a lie btw…) 3g Fat, 2g Saturated Fat, 10mg Cholesterol, and 20 mg sodium content.