A meal in a restaurant might seem to be healthier than one eaten in a fast-food outlet, but according to a new study eating out at either location leads to a much greater consumption of calories than eating a meal prepared at home.
The study, published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found that eating out at either fast-food outlets or full-service restaurants would typically consume 200 calories more per day than when staying at home for meals.
These findings reveal that eating at a full-service restaurant is not necessarily healthier than eating at a fast-food outlet. The main problem with eating in restaurants was found to be that diners would typically consume more sodium and cholesterol in their meals than elsewhere.
In comparison, people eating at fast-food outlets consume 10 mg more cholesterol than people eating at home. Even though people eating in restaurants would take in more healthy nutrients such as potassium and omega-3 fatty acids than people eating at home or in fast-food outlets, they would be consuming significantly large amounts of two nutrients – cholesterol and sodium – that Americans tend to eat too much of already, even at home.