18 July 2007

"Salad" Doesn't Always Mean "Healthy"

My husband and I went out for a movie earlier this week and decided to catch a late dinner afterward at Mimi's across the parking lot from the theatre. I always like their chicken caesar salad and figured it was a safe bet for me being on WeightWatchers.

It wasn't.

I didn't find out the painful truth until I got home from the restaurant with my tummy full of the "evil" salad and looked up the nutritional facts online. Here's the scary breakdown thanks to CalorieLab:

Mimi's Cafe Blackened Chicken Caesar Salad
1,524 calories
119g of fat
40.5 points

HUGE gulp... Panic, panic, panic... Lots of "I wish I had just come home" thoughts... Then the reality that I have to suck it up, record it, start over the next day, and MOVE ON!

The lesson learned in all of this? Well, there are a couple really:

1) Don't Assume - I'd eaten at Mimi's before and had the same menu item, but I had "guessimated" when I recorded my points in the past. I shouldn't have done that. I should have looked it up the first time, figured out that it was an unwise menu choice, and found a better option when I eat at that restaurant.

2) Get Over It - Once I'd made the unwise menu choice, I had to battle with my internal voices telling me all was lost for the week because I'd gone over for the day and for the week, and I might as well just go and eat everything else unwise in huge quantities too. That's probably a common response. But I realized I couldn't do that. Just because I consumed an unwise meal, doesn't mean I have to consume two or three or SIX! It just meant I consumed ONE! And I could start over again the next day with a clean slate and move on. The one unwise meal would probably affect my body's ability to handle the calories appropriately but tacking on a whole bunch more would make the situation even worse.

3) I Am Not a Failure - Just because I consumed the one unwise meal, doesn't discount the weight loss I've experienced over the past year nor does it cancel out all the good nutritious practices I've adhered to during that time and the health benefits I've had from it. Trust me, my mind still wanted to go to that place, but I've had to fight that tendency and force myself again and again to view it all with a broader and more healthy perspective.

Mimi's Cafe is not a bad restaurant by any means. But for someone like me, their Blackened Chicken Caesar Salad is not a good choice unless I have the calories/points to handle the consumption (and I'm not sure how I ever would). The calories and grams of fat in the serving given are awfully high for a salad.


Sue said...

Mimi's Cafe should be ashamed of themselves for putting a salad on the menu with that many calories. Everyone knows that salads are supposed to be safe for dieters. So how can they justify having an item on the menu that contains so much fat? They need to evaluate their menu.

Joanie said...

Is there anyway to pare down the fat in this salad? Substitute a no fat dressing? I think that is the fat source. Also have you contacted Mimi's about a healthy alternative. I am sure they would be receptive

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