On busy nights, it’s easy to find yourself calling for takeout — especially delicious Chinese food. Your local Chinese restaurant probably has a big menu. But if you aren’t careful, you might order a meal that’s a whole lot less healthy than you think it is. Sure, we all know that General Tso’s chicken has tons of calories and fat. But did you know one popular Chinese restaurant dish has more calories than three chicken sandwiches from McDonald’s? And another that would necessitate three solid hours of walking if you wanted to burn off the calories?
Whether you’re going to indulge or not, you should know which foods from your Chinese restaurant might be hiding dangerous amounts of fat, sodium, and calories. Here are some insider tips on the unhealthy meals you should never order from a Chinese restaurant.
1. Lettuce wraps
A menu item called a “lettuce wrap” sounds healthy, right? Not so fast. Sure, lettuce wraps contain only a small amount of carbohydrates. But the dish usually contains more chicken than lettuce. And while many Chinese restaurants offer lettuce wraps as an appetizer, they have more than enough calories to stand alone as a meal.
An order of lettuce wraps can contain as many as 762 calories. Plus, that same order contains up to 21 grams of fat. Add in a salty sauce — which is responsible for the meal’s 1,479 milligrams of sodium — and you have a deceptively unhealthy meal.
Next: This main dish contains a whopping 60 grams of sugar.