While limiting your fast food intake is always ideal, sometimes you just can't avoid a trip to the McDonald's drive-thru. Everyone gets a craving every now and then, right? If you think it's virtually impossible to order a meal that isn't going to completely derail your weight loss goals, well, that's just not true! There are some lighter options you can go for, but there are quite a few menu items that are downright scary. There's even one option that takes the title of the worst McDonald's burger.
See, thanks to the ridiculously amount of calories, fat, sodium, and sugar you can end up consuming from any fast food restaurant, you'll want to do all you can to avoid ordering certain menu items. No matter how delicious they may taste! So in order to help you make the smartest choice next time you find yourself in the mood for a fast-food burger, we're here to tell you what you shouldn't order. (You'll want to stay stock up on any of The 7 Healthiest Foods to Eat Right Now, though!)
The worst burger at McDonald's is…
Double Quarter-Pounder With Cheese
Per 1 burger: 740 calories, 42 g fat (20 g saturated fat, 2.5 g trans fat), 1,360 mg sodium, 43 g carbs (2 g fiber, 10 g sugar), 48 g protein
When it came time to point out which burger is a no-go, we looked at the classic Mickey D's options you'll always find on the menu. And there the biggest offender was waiting. The Double Quarter Pounder with Cheese features two quarter-pound beef burger patties that are topped with onions, pickles, and two slices of cheese, all on a sesame seed bun. First and foremost, it's the burger with the highest amount of calories out of any on the menu. Yes, that's including the Big Mac, which clocks in at 550 calories.
This burger is not only high in fat at 42 grams, but it also contains 2.5 grams of trans fat. It's no secret how harmful trans fat is, as it lowers your HDL levels (aka your good cholesterol) and raises your LDL levels, or "bad" cholesterol. It can even trigger heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and other chronic conditions, according to Harvard Health. The 2020-2025 American Dietary Guidelines say to limit trans fats to as low as possible, which basically means zero is the goal.
If you happen to pair this burger with a medium-size order of fries, you're looking at 1,620 milligrams of sodium in one meal. It's important to keep in mind that The American Heart Association recommends no more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium a day, with an ideal limit of no more than 1,500 milligrams daily for most adults. You would far exceeding more than half of what you should have in an entire day and would be blowing beyond that ideal 1,500 milligrams. (And if you're looking for more tips, your ultimate restaurant and supermarket survival guide is here!)
Which McDonald's burger is the best to order?
If you really need to satisfy that burger craving, don't worry. There is a much better option for you at McDonald's. Instead of the Double Quarter-Pounder with Cheese, go for the hamburger. The original burger has just one beef patty that is seasoned with just a pinch of salt and pepper and is topped with a pickle, chopped onions, ketchup, and mustard. It comes in at 250 calories, 9 grams of fat, and 510 milligrams of sodium. It might be a smaller, not as flashy option, but there is nothing wrong with a classic choice.