Healthier Fast Food Review: McDonald’s can be better for you too

July 23, 2014

I am bracing myself to reactions to this post because it’s McDonald’s and HPB’s Healthier Dining Programme in one sentence. So I’m just going to say it upfront. McDonald’s is probably one of the most sneered upon food places that people see as unhealthy, so isn’t it preposterous McDonald’s to join in the programme?

Well, that’s one way to look at it.
But I prefer to choose to look at it in another way:

That by getting one of the most ubiquitous and popular food restaurants to join in the Healthier Dining movement, consumers now have more convenient ways to be healthier. Because over 120 McDonald’s restaurants in Singapore, of which many are 24/7 is now able to offer people healthier fast food at a very affordable price, conveniently.

Think about it. If HPB did not invite McDonald’s to join because they are afraid of repercussions from the public, we would be 120 restaurants short of places that offer alternatives or lower calorie meals as and when you want it (24/7, or delivery). So bravo to both for making this become a reality!

I went to try out McDonald’s Healthier Options last Sunday morning because I wanted to taste for myself what the Healthier Option combinations are like, for breakfast this time. When I arrived at the AMK Gardens branch (the one with the drive-in opposite the library), I noticed the HPB HDP decal on the door, right smack in the middle at eye level. I was surprised because I’ve never seen a sticker placed so prominently on the doors of any McDonald’s. It’s a good sign.


I had the pleasure to have another friend join me, and together we tried 2 breakfast sets. Both came with the Corn Cup (with whipped margarine on the side), and a black coffee. What is amazing is, I’ve never tried the McD corn cup before, nor the wholegrain Chicken McMuffin. And I almost never get the coffee when I am there for breakfast.


The Chicken McMuffin comes with a wholegrain muffin, something you can opt FOR FREE. To my surprise when I bit into it, it wasn’t hard or dry like one would expect of a wholegrain muffin. Instead it was soft and fluffy and I could taste a hint of grains in it, but it doesn't overpower the experience. It was so good (both taste and nutrition-wise), that I think I’ll order all my McMuffins in future with the wholegrain muffin. Again, it’s FOR FREE. Value for money!


 
Next, corn cup! It might sound weird that I’ve never tried this in my life (I’ve tried their Apple Slices before) but I think its because I’m always distracted by the fries or hashbrown. Again you can swap those out for a corn cup with your meal for free. And I LOVE CORN. Even better when it’s all taken off the cob (so there’s no need for gnawing) and ready to eat with a spoon! I tried it without the whipped margarine, and with it, and found that having it without doesn’t make much of a difference. So skip the margarine and enjoy the corn in its pure salty sweet and fragrant goodness. In fact, I wish they’d serve these plain corn kernels at cinemas in place of popcorn. 


Lastly, I tried the Sunrise Roll Chicken Ham! A relatively new breakfast menu item, I find the Sunrise Rolls to be perfect for when you don’t want too heavy a meal, but something just enough to nibble on. The Sunrise Roll is made with wholewheat wraps as well, which is not dry or tough at all and I always love it whenever there’s eggs and ham for breakfast. So it is a perfect and convenient breakfast!

What’s more, if you visit the McDonald’s website, you’ll see nutritional information for all their items. Here there’s the one for the Sunrise Roll.

 
Check out the Nutrition Calculator on the McDonald’s website now and also find out more about what you’re eating in terms of the breakdown. You can then compare that to your recommended daily intake on the HPB website’s Calorie Calculator (flash-only though).

Thanks to McDonald’s and HPB for introducing me to better alternatives and healthier options, proving that fast food can be healthier too!


This post is brought to you by HPB’s Healthier Dining Programme. For more info, visit eathealthy.sg

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