The 5 Worst Sandwiches in America

August 4, 2009

Just because it SOUNDS healthy, doesn’t mean it is…


Better yet, make your own sandwich and brown bag it once and a while.

I had a similar incident at Panera.  I got a healthy sounding grilled chicken sandwich without knowing the nutritional information.  I enjoyed it and then went home and got on the Panera site to figure out the points.  Oy vei!  It was a 13 pointer!  I couldv’e had a Big Mac for the same 13 points and probably enjoyed it more!

This is why I love that chain restaurants have to post calories for all their items in NYC.

The 5 Worst Sandwiches in America

The sandwich is the on-the-go meal of choice. When you don’t have time for utensils and dishes, the sandwich is a natural go-to.

Unfortunately, these once-simple meals are getting more complicated: From wraps to paninis, and ciabatta, semolina and sourdough, there’s an entire armada of doughy choices and sandwich varieties. But which are good for you? Which will deliver protein and other nutrients and help you stay in fighting trim?

Here’s a hint: Some of the worst offenders carry innocent-sounding words like “chicken” or “salad” or even “vegetarian” in their names. Before you pick up a sandwich, make sure you know just what’s lurking below those innocent-looking loaves. The new book “Eat This, Not That! The Best (& Worst!) Foods in America” catalogs the best and worst sandwiches in America. Making simple swaps like these every day will help you eat what you want and still lose 10, 20, or even 30 pounds in the course of a year!

Worst “healthy” sandwich
Romano’s Macaroni Grill Grilled Chicken and Artichoke

  • 980 calories
  • 55 g fat (13 g saturated)
  • 2,240 mg sodium
  • 76 g carbohydrates

Equivalent: As many calories as 16 Fudgecicles

Nothing sounds healthier than some nice grilled chicken and artichokes, right? Well, chances are, you’ll seriously regret choking down this calorie-fest. It’s one thing to have a fatty, highly caloric burger, but when a sandwich sounds this diet-friendly, it’s particularly egregious. You’re much better off sticking with a simple, lean entree like the chicken spiedini.

Eat this instead!
Grilled Chicken Spiedini

  • 360 calories
  • 10 g fat (2 g saturated)
  • 1150 mg sodium
  • 17 g carbohydrates

Worst vegetarian sandwich
Blimpie Special Vegetarian (12”)

  • 1,186 calories
  • 60 g fat (19 g saturated)
  • 3,532 mg sodium
  • 131 g carbohydrates

Equivalent: As much sodium as 86 saltine crackers

“Vegetarian” doesn’t automatically translate to “healthy.” Sure, this sandwich has vegetables, but it also has three different kinds of oil tucked into a hulking 12” roll. No wonder it contains more than half a day’s worth of calories and a cascade of carbs.

Eat this instead!
VeggieMax on Wheat (6”)

  • 499 calories
  • 21 g fat (6 g saturated)
  • 1,212 mg sodium
  • 50 g carbohydrates

Worst meaty sandwich
Subway Footlong Meatball with Cheese

  • 1,260 calories
  • 54 g fat (22 g saturated)
  • 3,570 mg sodium
  • 142 g carbohydrates

Equivalent: Same calories as 42 onion rings (from Burger King)

Jared may be able to hold up those huge pants next to his svelte frame thanks to Subway, but we guarantee his weight-loss diet did not include this belt breaker. But luckily, there are only two things that will get you into trouble at Subway: footlongs and hot sandwiches. The best bet is to stick to a 6” ham, turkey or roast beef — if you’re extra hungry, double the protein for only 50 to 80 more calories.

Eat this instead!
6” Double Roast Beef

  • 400 calories
  • 7 g fat (2.5 g saturated)
  • 1,410 mg sodium
  • 47 g carbohydrates

Worst fried chicken sandwich
Chili’s Buffalo Chicken Crisper Bites

  • 1,620 calories
  • 100 g fat (21 g saturated)
  • 5,380 mg sodium
  • 123 g carbohydrates

Equivalent: Same fat as 28 scoops of Edy’s Loaded Cookies and Cream Ice Cream

These sandwiches may look cute, but they’re far from harmless. At Chili’s, the words “bites” and “crisper” translate into calorie-packed sauces and a bucket of frying oil. You can taste the same bold flavors and save more than 1,000 calories by opting for the Fajita Pita instead.

Eat this instead!
Fajita Pita Chicken

  • 460 calories
  • 13 g fat (2 g saturated)
  • 1,400 mg sodium
  • 52 g carbohydrates

Worst sandwich in America
Quiznos Tuna Melt (Large)

  • 1,760 calories
  • 133 g fat (25 g saturated, 1.5 g trans)
  • 2,120 mg sodium

Equivalent: Same calories as 12 Budweisers (bottles)

The classic tuna melt is, in our eyes, a travesty of healthy eating. They’re taking one of the leanest, smartest foods out there — tuna — and bombarding it with an ocean of mayo and a flood of cheese. And Quiznos takes it to the next level with their outrageous serving sizes. You’re much better off with a flatbread sammie — heck, make it two! You’ll save at least 1,000 calories.

Eat this instead!
Sonoma Turkey Flatbread Sammie

  • 280 calories
  • 14 g fat (4 g saturated)
  • 740 mg sodium

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