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What’s In a Shamrock Shake?

Written on February 9, 2012 at 12:36 pm , by

shamrock shake mcdonalds

Photo courtesy of Flickr user Strupey

McDonald’s announced yesterday that—for the first time in its history—their annual Shamrock Shake will be available nationwide. Other than meaning that its cult-like following no longer has to track which of the locations offers the green concoction, this also means we’re all suddenly faced with yet another easily-accessible temptation! (Not that you should be frequenting fast food restaurants…)

Let’s break down what you’re in for if you consume the seasonal shake:

For a 16 oz. Shamrock Shake…

  • 550 calories
  • 16 grams of fat (8 of which are saturated, and 1 that’s trans fat)
  • 96 grams of carbohydrates
  • 72 grams of sugar
  • 13 grams of protein (from the milk)
  • 190 mg of sodium
  • 3 oz. of leprechaun blood
  • And then these ingredients for the special Shamrock Shake syrup: high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, water, sugar, natural plant flavoring (plant source), xanthan gum, citric acid, sodium benzoate (preservative), yellow 5, blue 1.

Our recommendation: Make a low-calorie vanilla shake at home by using low-fat ice cream and skim milk, add a dash of peppermint extract, and then a couple drops of green food coloring.

On the (Eat) Right Track: Restaurants Offering Lighter Items

Written on August 3, 2011 at 5:27 pm , by

Restaurants are starting to offer healthier versions of favorite meals. (Photo by Peter Ardito)

Last week, McDonald’s announced that the Happy Meal would get a makeover in September. And just a few days ago, The Cheesecake Factory announced that it is stepping up to the plate.

This indulgent restaurant is famous for its high-calorie meals, especially the ginormous cheesecake slice you can order for dessert. Starting next week though, the chain restaurant will reveal a “SkinnyLicious” low-calorie menu for the health-conscious diner.

With nearly 50 new and signature items registering under 590 calories each, guests will have a wide selection of appetizers, entrees and cocktails to choose from to satisfy their palate without feeling like they’re depriving themselves.

So with all of these menu changes, are restaurants finally admitting that they could offer healthier dishes? We’re welcoming the changes with open arms because after all, who doesn’t like a healthier option every now and then? I know I don’t want to worry about my waistline every time I dine out with friends.

Now tell us: Would you eat from The Cheesecake Factory’s low-cal menu or the regular one? Do you care that restaurants are lightening up a bit?