Fast food has more calories than people think.
Fast food isn’t considered the healthiest option but it’s quick and convenient. A recent study has found that diners are underestimating the amount of calories in menu items.
Breaking it down, teenagers are shorting the caloric amount by 34%. Moms and dads of school aged kids did a little better, underestimating by 23%. Researchers from the Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute interviewed about 3,400 participants who had visited popular fast food restaurants like McDonald's, Burger King, Wendy's, and Dunkin' Donuts.
Patrons were then asked to guess the number of calories in their chosen meal. When the researchers compared the estimates to the actual amounts, they learned that 25% of study participants estimated their food to have at least 500 fewer calories than what it really contained.
As the popularity of fast food has grown, so have the serving sizes.
From 1977 to 1996 hamburgers have increased in size by a little over an ounce. The change also gave customers an extra 78 calories per burger. French fry portions also got bigger, adding 113 calories.