By Barbara Day, M.S., R.D., C.N.
Wraps may seem like a great nutritional bargain but if you look at the calories in some of the wraps you may want to reconsider. Most of the wraps have from 250 calories (Grilled Chipotle BBQ Snack Wrap) up to 600 calories (McWrap Chicken & Bacon Crispy). Wraps at McDonalds are easy to eat on the run but if you add a medium order of French fries you could be up to 980 calories which means you would have to run for approximately 98 minutes (burn about 100 calories for 10 minutes of running) or walk for about 196 minutes (100 calories burned for about 20 minutes of walking) to burn those calories. For under 600 calories, you could have eaten double cheeseburger (440 calories), Big Mac (550 calories), or Quarter Pounder with cheese (520 calories). See Table 1. Nutritional Information for Selected McDonald’s Products . Buyer beware: before you buy check out the calories on the menu or menu boards. Knowing how many calories you need each day & how the calories will fit into your daily calories needs will help you maintain a good weight for your health.
Not all Wraps are Created Equal
If you go to a fast food type restaurant where you can tell the person exactly how you want it made, you may be able to get a better nutrition bang for your buck. For example, I would hold the mayonnaise, add extra tomatoes & lettuce (hoping the lettuce is romaine or leaf but probably just low nutrient CHEAP iceberg lettuce), add green peppers, onions, cucumbers & any other fresh vegetable they have. I like mustard but it’s salty so if you are worried about salt you may want to not add it to your wrap.
Table 1. Nutritional Information for Selected McDonald’s Products*
|McWrap Chicken & Bacon Wrap|
|McWrap Chicken & Ranch|
|McWrap Sweet Chili Chicken Wrap|
|Chipotle BBQ Snack Wrap|
|Honey Mustard Snack Wrap|
|Ranch Snack Wrap|
|Angus Deluxe Snack Wrap||410||25||27||20||960||2|
|Angus Bacon & Cheese Snack Wrap||390||21||28||21||1040||1|
|Angus Mushroom & Swiss Snack Wrap||430||25||27||22||730||2|
|Mac Snack Wrap||330||19||26||14||670||1|
|Quarter Pounder w/cheese||520||26||41||30||1100||3|
|Crispy Chicken Sandwich||510||22||55||24||990||3|
* Nutritional Information from McDonald’s website.
Image from: www.manreviewsfood.com
Barbara Day, M.S., R.D., C.N., is a registered dietitian with a Master’s Degree in clinical nutrition. The former publisher of Kentuckiana HealthFitness Magazine, Kentuckiana Healthy Woman magazine and radio show host of Health News You Can Use, Barbara has over 30 years of experience in promoting healthy lifestyles to consumers. Barbara worked as Nutrition Consultant to the Navy SEALs (8 years) and the University of Louisville Athletic Department (10 years). Barbara has private practice, DayByDay Nutrition, www.DayByDayNutrition.com, where she counsels clients on weight loss, cholesterol management, performance nutrition and an array of other medical issues. Visit Barbara’s new website which is an on-line health & wellness magazine, www.KentuckianaHealthWellness.com. Barbara writes nutrition and health columns for www.LiveStrong.com as well as a weekly nutrition column for the Southeast Outlook. She also designs and presents employee wellness programs to small and large businesses. Barbara is a runner, cyclist, hiker and a mother and grandmother to 13 grandchildren.