I Kissed Fast-Food Goodbye. You Can, Too.
A few years ago it dawned on me that I wasted way too much money, time, and way too many calories on fast food. I’ve kicked fast-food to the curb and I now enjoy nutritious, tasty meals that won’t clog my arteries quite so much. Here’s how you can cut your fast-food habit morning, noon, and night.
Make your own damn coffee. I tried to economize on drinking coffee on the run. I took advantage of those convenience-store apps where you (over)pay for seven cups of coffee to get your “free cup”, but ultimately I found that making my own damn coffee keeps me out of the fast-food line and saves me from the temptation of ordering a combo meal while I’m there. For the cost of three or four cups of convenience coffee (fast food or convenience store) I can buy a whole bag of ground coffee to make at home. Make your own coffee and you’ve started your day out by saving money.
Brown bag it, baby. Your lunchtime strategy for ditching fast-food is to bring lunch from home. Use leftovers from last night’s dinner, a sandwich with a salad, whatever trips your fancy. The point is, you control what goes into your brown bag and by extension into your body. Bonus: a lot more time to unwind over lunch and enjoy eating with work friends because you’re not in a fast-food line with half the city, burning up your lunch hour as well as your gas.
Dinner in the freezer. My own fast-food addiction mostly involved lunches, but yours may very well take you to the drive-thru at dinner time. One kid has soccer, the other kid has piano lessons. You’re still frazzled from work, and fast-food on the run seems like the solution. Relax—you can kick your fast-food habit at dinner, too. When you have time to cook dinner (and maybe, for you, it’s only on the weekends) make more than you need and freeze the extra. It’s ready to heat and eat so your family can actually sit down together or, if all else fails, you can heat it up and carry it with you to eat on the go.
Use convenience food–carefully. On nights when I have meetings after work and time is limited, I often plan a soup-and-sandwich dinner. I usually have homemade soup or chili in the freezer, but I also keep a can of Campbell’s Chunky on hand just in case. Convenience food can be a big help, but don’t lean on it too heavily. It makes no sense at all to cut out highly salted, fatty fast food and replace it with additive-loaded convenience food.
Break up with your fast-food romance. Enjoy better food, more time, and the chance to relax a little over your meals. I promise your fast-food restaurant won’t miss you, and your wallet sure won’t miss your fast-food habit.