We’re all for a home-cooked meal, but sometimes the electric glow of the Golden Arches beckons, and we just can’t say no to the promise of a burger piled high with all the toppings; those thin-cut, salty fries; a big ol’ sweet tea; and on those rare occasions when the ice cream machine isn’t down, a McFlurry.
But according to what dietician Emily Field told Business Insider UK, if you’re going to swing through the drive-thru on your way home, you should probably rethink your order.
Skip the fries (and probably the sweet tea and the McFlurry, too), and spring for two burgers instead.
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Yep, y’all heard that right. Two burgers, no fries.
And while it may seem sacrilegious to order a burger without the fries, there’s a method to Field’s madness.
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When it comes to making smarter choices, whether in the drive-thru or at home, it’s important to consider the balance of macronutrients, like fats, carbs, and proteins, in a food, she told Business Insider UK.
Foods that are high in carbs and low in protein (like an order of French fries) may give you energy right after you eat them, she said, but that little boost will quickly fade, and you’ll find yourself hungry again soon after eating, or worse, ready for a nap. The trick, said Field, is to eat meals with a balance of fat, carbs, and protein.
A burger, for instance, delivers a better balance of fat, carbs, and protein than a pile of fries: The burger’s protein and fat help keep blood sugar and energy levels more stabilized, so you may be less likely to have the rapid crash that comes from scarfing down a carton of fries.
Eating two burgers, then, rather than a burger and fries, means you’re getting twice the amount of protein and fewer carbs, so it’s the smarter choice for staying full longer.
So does this mean we should pile extra sausage gravy on our biscuits, too? More fried chicken on our chicken and waffles? Asking for a friend.