With the ever faster pace of the lives we are living, preparing quality home cooked meals has become nearly impossible, which is why the fast food chains have been growing at an exponential rate and pretty much everyone in the western world is now feeding from such chains for a big part. While fast food may often be pretty delicious, it is usually extremely caloric, full of fats and carbs and low in useful nutrients, making it extremely harmful to our overall health.
At the very least, understanding the composition of these fast foods is important to keeping as healthy and possible which is why we decided to take a look at the two top fast food chains, McDonalds and Burger King and compare their products in caloric content and other nutrients.
1. Beef burger
In the category of beef burgers, McDonalds burgers are certainly the more harmful one. A single Patty Beef Burger from McDonalds contains 530 calories, 240 of them coming from fat, while Burger King’s Bacon Double Cheese Burger only has 390, 190 of these coming from fats. Considering the fact these two burgers are fairly similar in taste, the Burger King option is definitely the smarter choice, simply having far fewer calories per serving, meaning you will be gaining less fat while enjoying the same dish.
Another area where Burger King beats McDonalds is fries. While small fries at McDonalds have 340 calories and 2 grams of protein, the same serving at Burger King only has 230 caloeries and double the protein. This means Burger King’s fries are not only less caloric but also better for your muscles as well as the difference in protein content will make some difference in the long run. If you have issues with sodium rich foods however, McDonalds can be a better options as their fries don’t come pre salted meaning you can reduce the amount of sodium you take in compared to Burger King fries.
A 12 oz smoothies at McDonalds is has 210 calories, consisting of 47 grams of carbs with 3 grams of fiber. The Burger King smoothies on the other hand are a bit less caloric, with 190 calories, 44 grams of carbs and 2 grams of fiber, providing pretty much the same nutritional value each. This makes the choice all yours and when it comes to smoothies we don’t have much of a preference.
When comparing McDonalds hamburgers with Burger King Whoppers, we once again come up with McDonalds as winners. The main reason is that McDonalds actually offer small burgers with 240 calories in 98 grams of meat while Burger King only offer a much bigger 290 gram burger with a huge 650 calories. This means eating a hamburger at McDonalds will be a healthier choice, as it will have you ingesting fewer calories and generally eating a smaller meal, which is always the healthier and better choice. Overeating leads to obesity and heart disease, so if you have to eat one, go for the McDonalds hamburger.
If there is one area where McDonalds actually beats Burger King in calorie counts, it is their salads. Because you get an option to order a salad without any dressing at McDonalds, these salads are not necesarrily high in calorie count at all, meaning they can actually be healthy. Burger King salads on the other hand tend to have a lot more calories and in some cases the number goes up to three times higher than that in McDonalds salads.
Burger King is the healthier option in the majority of areas, salads are simply not one of them, and McDonalds must be commended for the fact they offer some fairly nutritious and non-caloric salads to their customers, aside from their other more caloric dishes.
When taking trips to McDonalds you may want to consider ordering a salad instead of a burger every once in a while to combat the calorie count as it is well known ingesting fewer calories will reduce your chances of developing heart diseases, obesity and the other illnesses that plague our fast paces generations.
6. Breakfast menu
Both chains offer breakfast menus. McDonalds meny with bacon, eggs and cheese bagel contains 530 calories, with some vitamins, iron and calcium provided by the food. On the other hand, a breakfast at Burger King containing the same food comes with only 370 calories and 10% of the daily intake of the aforementioned minerals and vitamins. Burger King certainly comes out on top in this category as the much lower calorie count does matter a lot.
7. Chicken nuggets
Chicken nuggets in general are not a very healthy choice and a small portion of 4 nuggets at Burger King will come with 190 calories and 360 mg of sodium. The same dish at McDonalds contains pretty much the same amounts of nutrients, again leaving the choice up to you. What we are saying is, if you choose to eat chicken nuggets, it won’t really matter which of the two chains you pick.
8. Fish Food
Even the fish burgers at these two chains are pretty caloric. McDonalds Fillet-o-Fish for instance has 190 calories, 5% sugars and 15% protein content, while the Burger King’s altenrative, Big Fish goes even further with 500 calories and the same amounts of nutrients. Burger King’s Big Fish also has more saturated fats than Fillet-o-Fish, making it a generally unhealthier choice and one to be avoided. McDonalds is the clear winner in the fish burger category.
When it comes to the sweets the two chains compare quite the same. The two desserts we took a look at are Chocolate Fudge Sundae from Burger King and McDonalds, and the two showed pretty much the same stats, with 280 calories and 15 mg of cholesterol in each. Considering they are both the same thing and the calorie counts are not too high, both desserts are reasonable options if you are just looking to treat yourself, but as always, remember not to stuff yourself with these too often.
Burger King offers the healthier chicken burger alternative in their Tendergrill Chicken Sandwich which features 380 caloeis and 730 mg of sodium, as opposed to McDonald’s Premium Grilled Chicken Club Sandwich which has 510 calories and 820 mg of sodium, both higher amounts and more harmful. The huge amounts of sodium in both are however, quite dangerous, but picking the one with less calories and sodium may save you at least a little bit.