Your stomach is growling and you need food fast!

Your stomach is growling and you need food fast!

… You NEED Fast Food …errr Food Fast!

You are determined to eat clean.
You plan and prepare.
You cook meals ahead of time.
Your fridge is stocked with healthy choices.
You use a 6-pack bag cooler to carry your meals.
You stock your car, gym bag, purse, and desk with apples, almonds, protein bars, whey protein, water, and a shaker cup! You are determined and on a mission, and you are NOT going to fall of track. Until you encounter THAT time…

It Happens: There is always “THAT time”…that time when plans change, traffic is at a standstill, or something outside of your control strikes.  It is feeding time and for whatever reason, you are NOT prepared. Your stomach is growling at you in anger and then out of the corner of your eye…there it is.  You spot the big bright sign out your favorite fast food chain next to that ‘all too’ convenience store, and they are calling your name!

Fast food is calling: When your only options are a convenience store or a fast food chain, you CAN build a meal that contains protein, carbs, and some healthy fat; that will NOT sabotage your waist line. I am NOT suggesting making convenient stores or fast food chains a part of your daily meals, but what I AM suggesting is when ‘THAT time’ comes, that you are prepared and can make the best choices! It is ALWAYS better to build a meal and eat something instead of just skipping a meal.

Convenience stores

Convenience stores are always within reach and they are getting healthier options. With a little patience and an open mind you can build a balanced meal which has the right balance of protein, carbs, and healthy fat.

  • Proteins: Hard boiled eggs, Cottage cheese, turkey jerkey, Greek Yogurt, and even those “lunch-ables”. Choose the turkey ones, eat the lunch meat and  throw away the crackers/dessert. You can also find ready made protein shakes and protein bars that will do in a pinch (more on that below).
  • Carbs: Fresh fruit and fresh veggie sticks will be your best carb options here.
  • HealthyFats: Unsalted and unsweetened nuts
  • Protein/Carb Turkey sandwich- use mustard only (no mayo), eat ½ the bread (whole grain or wheat)
  • Protein/Fat/Carb combo: There is always trail mix. Eat the nuts and the dried fruit and you have a some protein, some healthy fats and some carbs. Just WATCH the potions as the dried fruit has a lot of extra sugar. Protein bars are another option. Many of these are loaded with sugar and fats so read the labels and  choose the most natural bars (can you define the ingredients?) Look for bars with less sugar and carbohydrates, with higher protein. Remember, many of these bars have 300-500 calories, which is considered a meal replacement. Eat only ½ bar for a snack portion.


I am NOT recommending you make a habit of eating at fast food joints. I am merely showing that you can make it work if it is the ONLY option.  Be aware that most fast food portions are often two to three times the serving size that you SHOULD be eating. Portion control is KEY! Use your hand as a guide; proteins should be the size of your fist, fats should be no larger than your thumb, starchy carbohydrates should also be the size of your fist. Steamed or raw vegetables can be eaten in greater quantities but avoid butter, sauces, oils. Use fresh lemon, pepper to season.

Burger and Chicken chains:

  • Proteins: Eggs (egg whites are best), Yogurt Parfait (without granola), Small Hamburger or Grilled Chicken Sandwich- (no cheese, no mayonnaise, no “special” sauces and TOSS the buns). Choose grilled when you can, and remove the skin.  Also avoid the mayonnaise based side orders such as cole slaw and potato salad; as well as anything breaded and/or fried.
  • Carbs: Oatmeal, Fruit, salad, Baked Potato- plain (no bacon, butter, or sour cream). Avoid- French fries & other deep fried foods. Corn on the cob- without butter, Steamed veggies- without butter, Sliced apples or fruit salad are also good carb choices.

Mexican Chains
Choose chicken or shrimp fajitas (leave off the sour cream and beans), eat the meat, veggies, and some of the avocado.  Some other good options are:  grilled chicken soft tacos, black beans, salads w/protein (chicken/shrimp), grilled “fresco” style steak burritos,
veggie and bean burritos, and Ceviche.  Just stay away from the cheese, thick sauces, and fried taco/tortilla shells.

Submarine/Sandwich chains
Choose a 6” submarine with whole grain bread BUT eat only ½ the bread. Choose lean meats (turkey, chicken, roast beef), and avoid the cheeses, sauces, and mayonnaise that loved to get slathered on the sub.  In case you were wondering, adding lots of extra veggies are always okay!

Asian take-out
Good choices include:  egg drop and miso soups; steamed, roasted or broiled entrees; steamed or baked tofu, steamed brown rice, edamame, cucumber salad; stir-fried veggies with chicken, tofu or shrimp (ask for light oil); sushi and sashimi.

Italian Food
Extra thin crust pizza with light cheese and extra veggies is not a bad call.  Bonus points if you can have them add chicken as a topping.  Whole grain pasta with marinara sauce topped with grilled chicken is a great option- just watch the portions on the pasta. Minestrone soup works as well. Avoid- cream sauces, breaded entrees, garlic bread, and bread sticks.

Smoothie Chains
Acai bowls & smoothies- try to add some protein, and limit the amount of granola or grains added.
Smoothies– choose “lite” options and add protein boosts and some peanut or other nut butters. Just be mindful of serving sizes.

Avoid- sherbet, ice cream add on’s, and watch the large sizes (then can often pack well over 500 calories and 80 grams of sugar)

So there you have it! Your stomach is growling and you DO have options. Control the situation, don’t let the situation control you! Make smart choices no matter what the situation is.

-Natalie Jill

Bloat, Fat, and Fatigue BE GONE! Give me 7 days to teach you the habits to get the weight off and change your life FOREVER! Start HERE




Natalie Jill

Natalie Jill is a leading Fat Loss Expert and high-performance coach. She helps you change the conversation around age, potential, pain and possibility. She does this through a SIMPLE and FUN unique method that you can find in her best-selling books, top-rated podcasts, interactive programs and coaching sessions. As a 50-year-old female, she KNOWS the struggles and pain that can come with aging! She takes the guesswork away and help you kill the F.A.T. (False Assumed Truths) holding you back from achieving your goals. To know more about Natalie Jill, you can visit her Facebook Profile, Tiktok, and Instagram.