How latte lifestyle is making us lardy
THINK that order of eggs and orange juice you’re probably enjoying right now at your local cafe is a healthy choice?
Experts warn that those who ditch the classic wheat cereal and milk in favour of a restaurant breakfast could be consuming the equivalent of a high-fat, high-sugar junk food meal.
Whether it is grabbing a bacon-and-egg roll on the way to work or scheduling catch-ups over Sunday brunch, nutritionists agree that dining out for breakfast may be contributing to rising obesity levels.
A study by Women’s Health magazine found that a slice of banana bread can contain more kilojoules than a KFC Zinger Works burger (2339kJ), while two slices of Turkish bread spread with a teaspoon of butter are equivalent to two Mars Bars (2300kJ).
Breakfast favourite eggs benedict – about 2900kJ – is almost as bad for the waistline as a McDonald’s bacon double cheeseburger.
A hot chocolate? That is an extra 1406kJ and 15.5g of fat to the calorie count.
The Dietitians Association of Australia recommends a daily saturated fat intake below 24g.
Researchers from the University of Massachusetts Medical School in the US have identified eating out for breakfast regularly as a major risk factor for obesity, with those guilty of such indulgences 137 per cent more likely to be overweight.
Nutritionist Rosemary Stanton said that cafe breakfasts were an ”exaggeration of everything” people would make at home, with typically much larger portion sizes and higher contents of fat, sugar and salt.
”It is almost a justification of the cost of eating out,” Dr Stanton said.
She said the biggest culprits were the size of serving portions and the ”intrusion” of banana bread and muffins onto breakfast menus.
”Banana bread is usually equal to several slices of cake and the muffins are usually equal to several cupcakes,” she said.
”If you only do this once a year on your birthday, that is fine. If you do it every Saturday, you would be better off ordering raisin bread.”
Those who order a skim coffee to absolve their guilt need not be so smug.
”You see people ordering a large breakfast and then a skinny latte,” Dr Stanton said. ”Here, you’re saving 2g of fat and with the food, you’re eating 32g.”
A large orange juice uses up to seven oranges, adding up to as many as 60g of carbohydrates or the equivalent of four slices of bread, dietitian Monica Kubizniak said. ”In essence you’re having two brekkies,” she said.
Lisa Renn, a Melbourne dietitian, said that cafe-goers were potentially missing out on essential fibre and calcium which they could get at home with regular cereal and milk.
”Certainly, it is nice to eat out and, certainly, people are eating out more,” Ms Renn said. ”It is possible to make good choices but it is about learning where the hidden traps are and asking restaurant staff, ‘Do you use cream and milk in this?”’
Source: CAROLINE MARCUS in The Sydney Morning Herald, December 20, 2009, http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/wellbeing/how-latte-lifestyle-is-making-us-lardy-20091219-l6o7.html