Home / Health Category / Breaking the Fast Food Habit

Breaking the Fast Food Habit


Your time and perhaps budget is limited. For added pressure, the desperate pleading of hungry children echo from your vehicle’s backseat.

Suddenly, on the horizon glitters a pair of golden arches, a large bell or a smiling old Southern man.  Hurrah!  Instant satisfaction is near.

Turning into the drive-thru, the kids’ squeals of delight cannot squelch the loud disagreement happening inside your head.

“You know this is not healthy eating,” screams one part of your brain.

“It is all okay,” counters another section with a condescending tone. “I’ll eat a salad.”

Yeah, right.

One whiff of the fried foods and you are minutes away from wrapping your lips around greasy burgers, chicken and fries.  Since your day has been so stressful – a milkshake is the perfect reward.

The sense of euphoria that engulfs you as the last fatty gulp and sugary slurp passes your gullet is soon followed by feelings of guilt, bloat and worst of all – hunger for more fast food.

Your desire is exactly how the fast food industry engineered it would be.

Granted, your own free will led you into a fast food eatery. However, millions of dollars spent on research and development, keep you coming back for breakfast, lunch and dinner, in addition to in-between meal snacks.

Need a visual?

Think of mad scientists in their laboratory, surrounded by bubbling brews suddenly shouting,

“Eureka!  We have discovered another chemical additive to make the food more addictive!”

As studies have proven, fats, sugars and flavor-enhancing additives, found in many fast foods, have a direct link to weight gain. They also falsely fill your brain with happy thoughts. Add to that the notion of saving money and wrap it up in world class advertising campaigns. There is little wonder you agreed to being super-sized – in many ways.

Have courage.

You can break the fast food habit.

Do not go cold turkey unless you are ordering it on a sub sans the mayo, cheese and chips. Immediately eliminating fast food is a set up for failure. Remember those chemical additives lurking in your brain? Seductively, they are asking you to “feed me…feed me.”

Luckily, your brain is a retrainable organ.

Do not eat the whole meal. 

As soon as you open the wrapping paper, pull off one half of the bun.  Feed it to the pigeons or seagulls that usually hang out in the parking lot.  The same works for the fries, coating on chicken, a hushpuppy and a burrito’s refried beans. An added bonus is beans hanging off a gull’s beak provide comic relief.

Scoop the goop. 

With your napkin, scrape off fat laden tarter, barbeque or special sauces.  Enough will linger to taste, but with fewer calories.

Say no to the combo meals. 

Order ala carte and be less tempted without onions rings, mashed potatoes or a deep-fried pie lurking in bag.

Buy a kid’s meal.

There is no age limit and apple slices are a healthier menu option. A definite plus is a toy comes with it.

Forgo the soda, sweetened tea and milkshake

At least order a smaller size until you can eat without drinking any of them.

After the meal, drink lots of water to detoxify your body.  This will help you conquer the addiction.

Once off fast foods for just a few weeks, you will be amazed how your body no longer craves it.  It might reject it, in the form of nausea or diarrhea, shortly after consumption.

Fast food’s claim of being budget friendly must include the price of gas, purchasing larger clothes and most importantly the possible need for future medical help. Suddenly, the dollar menu’s value skyrocketed.

In the time it takes to grab a bucket of chicken, you can create meals at home or with a quick stop at the grocery store.  Think rotisserie chicken, bagged salad and microwaving baked potatoes.

Compare all the costs of one month’s fast food dining to a month without.

The slimmer you will appreciate the savings.

About LJ Bottjer

LJ Bottjer is a citizen of the world, whose journey began in Manhattan. Now living in Northern California, her garden produces healthy food almost year-round and she enjoys biking, yoga and hiking. www.words4sail.com
Scroll To Top