Life

Burger King Isn't The Only Fast Food Chain Cutting Calories

This week, Burger King announced a new product called "Satisfries," a slightly healthier version of its basic French fries. This move recalls The Atlantic's July cover story, which suggested that small changes like these could do more to combat America's obesity problem than Michael Pollan's locavore movement. Fast food chains are decreasing calories and adding whole grains — quietly, because sales tend to plummet when people think things are too healthy (God Bless America). Here are some changes fast food chains are making.

This week, Burger King announced a new product called "Satisfries," a slightly healthier version of its basic French fries. This move recalls The Atlantic's July cover story, which suggested that small changes like these could do more to combat America's obesity problem than Michael Pollan's locavore movement. Fast food chains are decreasing calories and adding whole grains — quietly, because sales tend to plummet when people think things are too healthy (God Bless America). Here are some changes fast food chains are making.

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Satisfries

Burger King's new "Satisfries" are crinkle-cut and lower in fat. The fries were designed to be less porous and thereby less oil-absorbent, an innovation that will reduce fat by 40 percent and calories by 30 percent compared to the chain's regular fries.

Egg White Delight

McDonald's "Egg White Delight" is a newly-updated version of its classic breakfast sandwich. Rolled out in April 2013, the Egg White Delight is made with egg whites instead of whole eggs and a bun that's part whole-grain flour. The result is a lower-calorie, less fatty Egg McMuffin. The new sandwich has 250 calories (compared to 300 in the classic), 7 grams fat (compared to 12) and 8 grams whole grain.

Sofritas

Chipotle has began rolling out a new vegan protein for its burritos and tacos. Called "Sofritas," the mock meat is a spicy, tofu-based option that's been getting good reviews so far. Right now, sofritas is available at Colorado, Idaho, Oregon, Utah, California, Washington and Vancouver, British Columbia Chipotle locations.

Egg-White Flatbreads

Recently, Dunkin' Donuts introduced a line of veggie and turkey-sausage egg-white flatbread sandwiches. They're not exactly a nutritious option, but they do beat a box of Donut holes.

Earlier this year, Wendy's began rolling out a line of flatbread sandwiches at some locations, in an attempt to take on fast-casual options like Panera. The Asiago Ranch Chicken and Smoked Honey Mustard Grilled Chicken sandwiches are lower in cholesterol and saturated fat, a spokesperson said (though there are still 15 to 30 grams total fat in the sandwiches if you order them fully loaded). The partially whole-grain breads are made with millet, flax seed, sesame seed, rolled oats and cracked wheat.

'Artisanal' Quarter Pounder

In May, McDonalds announced that its quarter-pound burgers would be served on buns containing 8 grams whole grain (before that, it was all refined flour). Proving the 'artisanal' trend has truly jumped the shark, McDonald's is calling them "artisan" buns.

All photos via Facebook

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