Get to Know The Calories in Fast Food

Have you looked at a menu lately and wondered, “What all those numbers next to the price!?”

Those are the calories, my dear.

menu with calories

The Food and Drug Administration has enacted laws requiring calories to be posted along with menu items. Are you using that knowledge?

For the past few years, The Food and Drug Administration has been creating legislation requiring chain restaurants with 20 or more locations to post calorie information on their menus.

knowing how many calories are in that Chik-fil-a or Subway sandwich is great; but does knowing calorie counts change the way we order and eat?

The scientists have studied the trend and the results are mixed.

Here’s a quote from National Public Radio on how posting calorie counts has helped:

Sara Bleich, an associate professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, says that numerous studies have looked at the effectiveness of calorie labeling on menus in cities like New York, where such information is already required.

“In general, the studies show when you put calories on menu boards, only about 30 percent of consumers notice them,” she says.

From: “Want A Calorie Count With That? FDA Issues New Rules For Restaurants“, NPR, 2014/11/24

The story went on to describe how a young lady that was a big fan of sweet coffee drinks and Rice Kripsies treats at Starbucks changed her ways after learning how packed with calories her go-to picks were.

“30 percent of customers notice them”.  That’s great!

But do they use that information to make better choices?

Here’s a quote from SHAPE magazine that says “no”:

One New York University School of Medicine study conducted in 2011 of adult-accompanied children and teens of four chain restaurants in low-income neighborhoods found that, although customers took note of the calories listed on the menu, their receipts indicated that they bought no fewer calories at the register.

The researchers evaluated New York City patrons before and after calorie counts were made mandatory and then looked at a comparison group in Newark, N.J., where no such law went into effect. Half of the teens took note of the calories, but continued to purchase an average 725 per register trip. Further, 25 percent of parents who were buying children’s meals noted the calories, but continued to purchase about 600 calories at a time for their youngsters.

From: “Do Calorie Counts on Fast Food Menus Really Work?”, SHAPE, 2012/09/18

Thanks to the government, we’re being enabled to make better choices about the way we order when we eat out.  But in the end, the decision is still up to us to make the right choice.

The next time you’re faced with options at a fast food counter, will you use the calorie counts displayed to make better choices?  Have you already made changes?  Let us know in the comments!

While you’re pondering your next order, check out this Fast Food Calorie Quiz from BuzzFeed.



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The Biggest Loser ~ Kale Salad at Costco

I am at my weakest when I don’t plan my meals. The allure of “fast food” or a quick, carb loaded snack often wins out when I don’t have a healthier option on hand.

So when I find a yummy, healthy, and ready-to-go meal, I get excited!!!

The Biggest Loser Kale Salad Packaged

The Biggest Loser Kale Salad Packaged

While doing a Costco run, I came across the Biggest Loser Kale Salad. I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised to find it fresh and delicious. A little high in calories, most likely because of the nuts and dried fruit, this salad has 6 grams of fiber, 5 grams of protein, and the lasting power to make a great lunch or post workout meal.

The Biggest Loser Kale Salad Prepared

The Biggest Loser Kale Salad Prepared

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Dave & Buster’s Westchester Offers a Fun & Active Date Night

What did you do during your last date night? See a movie? Dinner? BORING! Dave & Buster's Dave & Buster’s offers a alternative to another boring date night. And now it’s local for us in the Los Angeles area. No more enduring the 91E to Ontario from the South Bay. This Wednesday, Dave & Buster’s Westchester opens in the Howard Hughes Center.

Location: 6081 Center Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90045

Sunday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to midnight
Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m

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18. Make Eating Organic Easy with Farm Fresh to You

Work, exercise, social events; While I love my trips to the farmer’s market, who has time?

Box of Organic Veggies

Amarosa fingerling potatoes, mandarin, eureka lemon, gala apple, broccoli, kale, red leaf lettuce, carrots, butter lettuce, red radishes

Last week I decided to join a CSA called Farm Fresh to You.  CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture, a program where community members support a local farm by signing up to buy produce directly from that farm on a regular basis.

Farm Fresh to You, delivers organic produce to your home or office. Signing up was simple and my delivery came three days later. I am not sure at what time, but when I opened the door on Wednesday morning there was a basket of fresh fruit and veggies sitting on my front porch.


I am new to the world of organic produce but I can say right away my daughter noticed the difference in the shape of the carrot. She said they looked “real” and I noticed a difference in the taste that evening in my salad chopped full of veggies from the box.

The best part about the service for me is that it takes all the guess work out of picking the best quality produce for my family.  I have decided to get a box every 3 weeks, for now.  The “top chef” in me is loving the challenge of finding healthy recipes for the unfamiliar items.

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17. Eat Healthy During the Holidays

Skinny people know that  holidays are so much more than giving thanks and getting gifts.


The holiday season is no time to fall off your healthy living routine! Use these tips to keep your metabolism high while everyone else catches a carbohydrate coma.

The holiday season is like a war zone for skinny people.  They know that a caloric attack is behind every invitation to visit with friends or dine with relatives.

Besides pumpkin pie landmines and catastrophic casseroles, skinny people also know that the biggest enemy is one they can bring on themselves:  overconsumption.  During the holidays, eating more (and more and more and more…) of the things we like is fair game.

Here are a few ways to keep your waistline safe on the front lines of the home front!

Avoid Overeating

  • Eat Walnuts: Eat a handful before your meal. They will help fill you up, and the antioxidants can improve your artery function and reduce inflammation.
Giving Dad The Bird on Thanksgiving

OK. This tip is going to be hard if not impossible for many of the people in my family! :D

  • Limit yourself to two alcoholic drinks: Alcohol removes your inhibitions, so if you drink before you eat, you’re going to overeat.
  • Sit down and chew your food: You will enjoy your food more if you chew it slowly.

Make Healthy Choices For Holiday Meals and Snacks

  • Beware of foods loaded with butter and cheese: Steamed broccoli is healthy and low in fat, but when smothered in cheese and butter, it can pack an additional 215 calories and 16 grams of fat in just one cup!
  • Watch out for salads: Leafy greens and salads seem like a healthy choice, but when loaded with high-fat, high-cholesterol cheeses and dressing, such as a Cobb salad, these verdant concoctions contain more than 1,000 calories and 71 grams of fat!
  • Avoid saturated fats and fried foods: These are guaranteed to heavily increase the calorie count. Opt for baked options, rather than fried and reach for lean meats such as white turkey.

Beat-the-Bloat Tricks for Feeling Less Full

  • Wear a watch: Keeping track of time and eating slower will help you notice when you’re getting full. Wait a couple minutes before returning for seconds – this will give your body the chance to digest food intake.
  • Drink Water: This may seem like a no-brainer, but drinking a glass of water before a meal can help you eat 20% few calories. If you feel bloated, have a glass of peppermint tea instead, which helps prevent the feeling of being extremely full.
  • Incorporate papaya and pineapple: These super foods have digestive enzymes that assist with digestion and help you feel less full after a large meal.

Of course, the holiday season is just one span of a year-round and lifelong struggle to stay skinny.  These tips make sense in November and December, but can also be used all year long.

* Tips from The Doctors.
* Exercise Picture from
Lipstick Powder n Paint.

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Eat Healthy & Save! Farmer’s Market Deals

I think it is safe to say that eating healthy can be costly. But a weekly trip to your local farmer’s market can help you save money while helping your family get the nutrients they need.

By taking advantage of multiple purchase deals (i.e. 3 for $5, 2 for $7, etc) you can really come out on top at your local farmers market.

Check out the picture below.  I got all of this for around $25. The baby carrots ($5) put me over the $20 mark, but I couldn’t help it. They are pre-peeled and three different colors. I am praying hoping that the rainbow will impress my picky eaters!

A bountiful harvest from the Torrance Farmer’s Market.

Even more fruits and veggies from the Torrance Farmer’s Market.  What  deal!

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16. Make Bare Ass Naked Videos

Many of us have that dream of making it big in music.  We sing along with the radio in the car, serenade ourselves in the shower, and belt out priase with the congregation in church.

In our minds, our singing is radio worthy.  We need a contract ASAP!

But what about after that?  To have hit single these days, a video is mandatory.  You gotta give the people what that want and that means showing who is singing!

Putting your golden voice aside for a moment, does your current work out and diet regimen give you the star power needed for a super star look!?

Timothy Bloom and V. Bozeman bare their souls -- and their bodies -- for this music video.

Timothy Bloom and V. Bozeman bare their souls — and their bodies — for this music video.

If you need some idea of what I’m talking about – and maybe to get you movivated – check out the videos below.  These skinny people have the voices to make hit records and the washboard abs to back up the tracks on video…especially when they are nearly buck naked!

Continue reading

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15. Choose Grilled Options Instead of Fried

I’m a sucker for fish tacos. If I visit a restaurant and they have a fish taco on the menu, odds are good that I’m going to order at least one. At some places, that might be the only thing I’ll order.

Take Rubio’s for instance. They’re known as the home of the “original fish taco”. And for the past 10 years that I’ve been going there, I’ve only ordered one thing: their beer-battered fish taco.

Having a fish taco or two every now and then while traveling the road to Skinny won’t do too much damage. But I know that even a few calories shaved off here and there can help when going the distance.

Thank goodness my Rubio’s-menu-tunnel vision was cured when I tried their grilled salmon and mahi mahi tacos and burritos.

Unlike the fried original, the salmon and mahi are grilled saving anywhere from 60 to 100 calories per taco or burrito (see the charts below).

Along with calories, the grilled options minimize fat and boost protein. I’ll take that too.





Original Pollock Taco


19 g

10 g

Atlantic Salmon Taco


9 g

15 g

Pacific Mahi Mahi Taco


9 g

14 g






Original Pollock Burrito


49 g

25 g

Atlantic Salmon Burrito


33 g

33 g

Pacific Mahi Mahi Burrito


33 g

32 g

Health Mex Mahi

(Dairy free, Whole grain tortilla)


12 g


Tables with quick comparison of calories, fat, and proteins in Rubio’s tacos and burritos. Information sourced from

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Delicious & Quick Breakfast Egg Muffins

Here is an easy and quick breakfast on the go option. These muffins can be made on Sunday and reheated all week!

Continue reading

Posted in Millie Vanilli Cafe | 1 Comment

Free ~ Zumba, Kickboxing, and Yoga at Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza

Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza’s Bfit campaign is making things “all good in the hood!” Good health that is.

Free Zumba, Cardio Kick Boxing, and Yoga classes are being offered on the Macy’s bridge located in the newly renovated Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza Mall.  Yoga classes take place every Saturday at 10 AM.  Follow this link for more information.

Photo from


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