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Taco Bell?

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Old 01-03-2010, 11:07 AM   #1
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OK, I don't think this is a good idea...fast food from Taco Bell as a low calorie option? Apparently, you order al fresco items from the menu BUT it's not being touted as a diet! How is ordering fast food supposed to help you lose weight? Are you seriously not going to be tempted to order a side of nachos? Have you ever seen ground beef look that compact anywhere else? I'm not sold on it - what's your take?
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Old 01-03-2010, 11:17 AM   #2
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I've never heard anyone say Taco Bell is diet food. The "al fresco" is a joke, adding a couple tomatoes and some lettuce doesn't make it healthy. I had a bean burrito 'al fresco' a couple of months ago. We were on the road and there were really only taco bells and burger kings for 100s of miles (hello middle of nowhere). I used to love their bean burritos and knew it was 300 calories and I was ok with it but it didn't taste like I used to remember and actually made me feel a bit sick.

If you want healthy, mexican style food, try chipotle. They have nice salad options (I skip the dressing and use their salsa instead). Just avoid the cheese, sour cream and have guacamole on the side if you get it.

Although I will say that it is up to the individual. I never liked fast food much although I did used to like the taco bell bean burritos. If you watch your calories, you can eat fast food and lose weight. That doesn't mean you are eating healthy though.
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Old 01-03-2010, 11:46 AM   #3
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I just saw that commercial the other day for the Taco Bell diet .... ridiculous! The actress on the commercial claims she lost all this weight by eating the El Fresco choices at Taco Bell.

Advertisers will do anything to make money!
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Old 01-03-2010, 11:54 AM   #4
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Yeah, "Drive Thru Diet". It seems a response to Subway's push, an attempt to ride their coattails.

http://www.drivethrudiet.com/
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Old 01-03-2010, 12:13 PM   #5
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I've found the "al fresco" options to be useful on road trips, when other options are far, far worse.

We don't have a Chipotle here. Alas....

Calorie control is central to most weight loss plans, and some people can fit these choices into their days/months and make it work.
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Old 01-03-2010, 01:38 PM   #6
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yeah i saw that commercial the other day... i was waiting for the punchline
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Old 01-03-2010, 01:47 PM   #7
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I'm sorry. When I eat taco bell it's a treat and I'll just eat a couple soft tacos. If you keep it simple and just get tacos it's not as bad. I think the tacos are around 200 calories each and if you get one of their burritos (the new 5 layer one specifically) it's like 550 calories for one.

I think these options are handy when you have to eat out, but don't take it at face value. Look at the website's nutritional info. The first time I lost weight I was working at McDonalds and ate one meal from there every day I worked there. Of course I ate a lot of chicken, some salads, but if I wanted a small chicken sandwich I would have fruit or something else with it. You just have to do your research!
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Old 01-03-2010, 01:53 PM   #8
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As far as I can see, the items are just TB's regular fare without the cheese, sour cream, or guacamole. Or, put differently, a corn or flour tortilla, meat, lettuce, salsa, and in some items, beans. Nutritionally, I'd guess you're getting more protein and fewer carbs in a TB item -- esp the chicken soft taco -- than in a Subway sandwich, if only because tortillas are a lower-carb and lower-calorie vehicle for Stuff than bread. (Subway's nutrition counts are misleading, because they typically don't include any mayo, mustard, ketchup, dressing, or whatever else people put on sandwiches to make them palatable.)

Would I rather have homemade? Sure: it would allow me to use higher-quality ingredients, including whole wheat tortillas. (I avoid refined flour.) Still, relative to what's available in many small and/or freeway-centered towns in the US, TB's menu looks pretty healthy to me. I'd certainly choose it over Subway.

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Old 01-03-2010, 01:57 PM   #9
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I was pleasantly surprised last week when DH and I went to Subway. They have spinach for a salad base! I had spinach, lots of veggies, and the Philly cheesesteak meat. It was really satisfying.
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Old 01-03-2010, 02:55 PM   #10
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Taco Bell is about the only fast food place I find relatively easy and affordable to make a decent choice. I do use the Fresco menu, but I also ask for substitutions that aren't on the menu at all. For example, choosing hard shell saves about 50 calories, Fresco can save you 20 to 40 calories, depending on the item. Getting extra low-cal high fiber sides of onions, jalapeno, pico de gallo, lettuce... can bulk-up a meal without adding a lot of calories (and usually the cost of sides is minimal).

I've also made my own Taco Bell Salad by topping my own salad with a hard-shell taco that I mash into the salad. Even during road trips, I'll put a couple cups of lettuce in a ziploc bag, then I'll add the hard-shell taco (fresco or not) and any sides I ordered, squeeze in a packet of hot sauce and a bit of reduced-calorie ranch dressing (my homemade that I put in little tupperware-type containers).

I then close the bag and shake and squeese the bag to distribute the dressing
and break the taco up into the salad.

I love doing that. And it's surprisingly easy to eat a salad out of a ziploc bag. I close the zipper and turn the bag upside down (make SURE the zipper is sealed) and then roll down the bottom (which is now at the top) to almost where the lettuce begins. Then turn the bag upright and unseal the zipper - you've got a shallow "bowl" so you don't have to reach your hand deep into the bag to get out a forkful of salad.

As much as I'm willing to go to Taco Bell occasionally, eating there frequently enough to make a diet out of it, would drive me insane. There's absolutely no food or type of food that I'd want to eat that frequently. Even eating an apple every single day would eventually drive me off apples.
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Old 01-03-2010, 04:04 PM   #11
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I think Taco Bell just wanted some of the money that was made by Subway and Jared. I love the Salads from Subway. Easy to point on WW, too.
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Old 01-03-2010, 05:30 PM   #12
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I couldn't believe the commercial the first time I saw it and I'm glad I'm not alone! I'd much rather have a beef taco in romaine lettuce instead of a taco shell any day WITH all the good stuff (low fat and home made of course) over one trip to TB.
Is there anyone out there, besides the endorsed woman on the commercial, actually try to do this drive thru diet?
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Old 01-03-2010, 05:57 PM   #13
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Wow, I have missed this commercial. But I am not a big TB fan... my take is if you eat TB you will lose weight cuz you will get the trots! Just kidding! I couldn't resit...no one blast me, PLEASE!
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Old 01-03-2010, 09:31 PM   #14
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I had fresco soft tacos from TB last night. My boyfriend wanted Taco Bell and I always get them when we have it for dinner. Well, I get soft tacos without cheese, really. So it's just tortilla, ground beef, and lettuce. But close enough. I still consider it junk food since I don't get energy from eating them and they jack up my stomach. :|

But then I don't eat a lot of junk food. I think it's a good alternative to some of the stuff out there if you're a regular junk food eater.
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Old 01-03-2010, 09:48 PM   #15
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I think it's a good idea for those who cannot cook and take their lunches/dinners with them to work. I have friends who are sales people who are in their cars all day, and have to eat out for lunch, and this is perfect! But in moderation! Don't order four tacos at one sitting...that defeats the purpose. Wonder how many people actually do that?
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