This activity can be done in groups or individually, but seems to work better if each person does their own. Every time we do this, people are amazed at how many calories and fat are in fast food items.
1. As part of our education on making healthier choices at fast food restaurants, we ask participants to write down a typical fast food meal they would eat, using a condensed listing of foods from a variety of fast food restaurants.
2. We then have them add up the total calories, total fat, saturated fat and sodium in the meal. A few of the participants will share the results of their meal with the group.
3. Next, we talk about how to make "healthier" choices when eating fast food.
4. Using that information and the nutrition facts, participants come up with a modified version of their fast food meal that has fewer calories and less fat. Again, a few of the participants share the results of their meal with the group.
Rita Rutherford created a fast food display. She collected fast food containers from four McDonald’s meals:
• Regular hamburger, fries, Diet Coke
• Big Mac, small fries, small Coke
• Value meal
• Super-sized meal
Rita displayed a card next to each meal that showed the cost, fat content and sugar content. She used pats of margarine and teaspoons of granulated sugar piled on a plate as a visual to show the equivalent amounts with each meal chosen. This is a useful idea for portion sizing and fat and sugar education.
Judy’s passion for cooking began with helping her grandmother make raisin oatmeal for breakfast. From there she earned her first food service job at 15, was accepted to the world-famous Culinary Institute of America at 18 (where she graduated second in her class), and went on to the Fachschule Richemont in Switzerland where she focused on pastry arts and baking. After a decade in food service for Hyatt Hotels, Judy launched Food and Health Communications to focus on flavor and health. She graduated with Summa Cum Laude distinction from Johnson and Wales University with a BS in Culinary Art, holds a master’s degree in Food Business from the Culinary Institute of America, 2 art certificates from UC Berkeley Extension, and runs a food photography studio where her love is creating fun recipes.
Judy received The Culinary Institute of America’s Pro Chef II certification, the American Culinary Federation Bronze Medal, Gold Medal, and ACF Chef of the Year. Her enthusiasm for eating nutritiously and deliciously leads her to constantly innovate and use the latest in nutritional science and Dietary Guidelines to guide her creativity, from putting new twists on fajitas to adapting Italian brownies to include ingredients like toasted nuts and cooked honey. Judy’s publishing company, Food and Health Communications, is dedicated to her vision that everyone can make food that tastes as good as it is for you.