More commonly known as Sonic, Sonic Drive-In is an Oklahoma based American drive-in fast-food restaurant chain with 3,557 restaurants spreading throughout the United States. This means that if you are ever on the road and your stomach starts to growl, you don’t have to search far and wide to find the inviting red and yellow sign of the fast food restaurant. If you are watching your weight, you will be definitely disappointed to find that most of Sonic’s menu is extremely high in fat, calories, sugar and sodium. However, if you cannot resist stopping by and ordering, it is possible to opt out for healthier options from the tempting food menu.
Kick starting your day with healthy and hearty breakfast offers the much needed fuel until lunchtime, but it is best to avoid eating something that is excessively unhealthy. If you are on a weight check, fats and calories are your biggest enemies. This means if you are browsing through Sonic’s breakfast entrée list, you need to avoid its Breakfast Toaster sandwich as the sandwich alone has 650calories, with 49 g of fat and 1510 mg of sodium.
The daily-recommended sodium intake as established by the American Heart Association is 1500 mg, so with just a breakfast sandwich at Sonic, you are going overboard the recommendation. If you are looking for healthier breakfast option, go for a Junior Breakfast burrito, which has around 280 calories, 830 mg of sodium and 15 g of fat.
Chicken Sandwiches and Burgers
If you are trying to lose weight, then Sonic’s SuperSONIC Double Cheeseburger is a total no-no. The burger packs 1,240 calories with 1,690 mg of sodium and 87 g of fat! Lighter choices include the Junior Burger that has 330 calories, 480 mg of sodium and 17 g of fat. Another good option is the Grilled Classic Chicken Sandwich that has 450 calories, 1,240 mg of sodium and 17 g of fat.
Sides and Snacks
When choosing a side to go with, you should really avoid the Chili Cheese fries, only a small serving of which is jammed with 430 calories, 730 mg of sodium and 23 g of fat. Another side you are better off avoiding is the Mozzarella Sticks that contain 440 calories, 1,050 mg of sodium and 22 g of fat. A healthier alternative include Apple Slices that come with no-fat Caramel Sauce. This side order contains 110 calories, 60 mg of sodium, zero fat, and 15 g of sugar.
CreamSlushes and Milk Shakes
Although the restaurant offer extremely tempting milkshakes, it is better to avoid them altogether as even a small size of any flavor brings along large amounts of calories and fat. A small Mini Oreo Cheesecake Shake packs 770 calories, 77g of sugar, 600g of sodium and 36g of fat, while a small Peanut Butter Cookie Shake contains 780 calories, 540 mg of sodium, 47g of fat and 61g of sugar.
Haves and Have Nots At Sonic
- Majority of the burgers at sonic are loaded with calories, sodium and trans fat, which is the worst kind of fat for your health.
- Most sandwiches are big and have over 500 calories and 20 to 60 grams of fat each. Smaller is certainly better, and your best option includes the Junior Burger with 310 calories, 0.5 g trans-fat, 610 mg of sodium and 15 g of fat.
- It is always best to skip extras like bacon (70 calories and 5 g of fat) and cheese (60 calories, 5 g of fat) to minimize the intake of fat and calories.
- Unleash your inner kid to save on some major calories. Go for stuff like The Corn Dog, which has 210 calories, 530 mg of sodium and 11 g of fat, Chicken Strips, which have 200 calories, 11 g of fat and 470 mg of sodium, and String Cheese with only 80 calories, 190 mg of sodium and 5 g of fat. These items from the kids’ menu are ideal selections for any adult watching out her weight!
- When browsing through healthier options, go for the Grilled Chicken Salad with 310 calories, 1,070 mg of sodium and 13 g of fat or Santa Fe Chicken Salad, that contains 380 calories, 1,180 mg of sodium and 15 g of fat with no-fat Golden Italian vinaigrette if you are looking for a filling meal with lots of vegetables.
- If you do not feel like having beef, you should definitely try The Grilled Chicken Wrap, which packs 380 calories, 1,440 mg of sodium and 11 g of fat.
- Avoid frozen treats like Sonic Blasts, Cream Pie Shakes, malts, regular shakes, and CreamSlushes because they are extremely loaded with fat and calories. Slushes are mainly comprised of empty calories and sugar; so choose the smallest size if you really feel like having one. The standard size of 14 oz. of Diet Dr. Pepper or Diet Coke can be a fair treat as they contain around 8 g of fat and 220 calories.
- If you feel like having an ice cream, go for the lowest calorie ones, which include the Junior Banana Split with 180 calories, 60 mg of sodium and 3.5 g of fat, and Vanilla Cone, which contains 180 calories, 80 mg of sodium and 6 g of fat.
- If you are looking to have a breakfast with less than 450 calories and 30 grams of fat then Sonic is not the restaurant for you.
What About Sonic’s Diet Cherry Limeade?
Diet cherry lemonade is one of the numerous beverage options that you can find at Sonic. Being a diet drink, it is no surprise that it will be low in calories and sugar as compared to other traditional cherry lemonade, but that certainly doesn’t make it healthy. Although having the cherry drink occasionally can be an acceptable addition to your diet, this beverage is still not the best choice you can make.
As per Sonic, both a small and mini diet cherry drink has 15 calories in total. If you are ordering a large or medium sized drink, you can expect 20 calories. With a Route 44 size however, your calorie intake will go up to 25 calories. For the purpose of comparison, a regular, small sized cherry drink at Sonic packs 170 calories, while the medium sized limeade contains 230 calories. The larger size has 340 calories while the Route 44 contains a gigantic amount of 340 calories.
Remember that the diet cherry limeade is not sugar-free, but it is very low as compared to the standard version of the drink. Keeping your sugar intake in check in a great way to minimize the risk of obesity, heart disease and diabetes. For reference, keep the recommended sugar intake as suggested by the American Heart Association (AHA) in mind, which is six teaspoons of sugar every day for women and 9 teaspoons or less for men.
The diet limeade, regardless of its size, contains 2 g of sugar, which is equivalent to ½ teaspoon. In contrast, a small standard version of the die contains45 g of sugar, and the medium size has 60 g. The larger version packs 89 of sugar, and the Route 44 adds up to 121 grams of sugar, which equals to around 30 teaspoons.
Although the diet limeade is good news for people watching their weights, that does not make the drink nutritionally ideal. The only nutrient present in the beverage is vitamin C. Mini and small sized cherry limeade fulfill 4% of your total daily requirements of vitamin C, medium size offers 7%, the size large supplies 10% and the Route 44 offers 14%.
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A Healthy Alternative
Indulging in an occasional beverage of the diet cherry limeade is alright, but make sure you don’t make it a regular part of your diet. Also, try to stick to the one serving of small or mini size. Any size larger will only make you fuller and leave you less hungry for other nutritious foods. Consider making your own flavored beverage without any added sugar with fresh seedless cherries, limejuice, and ice. Not only will this help you avoid calories but also provide the body with the much-needed supply of fiber, vitamin C and potassium.
If you are an avid Sonic fan, you would be better off with a nutritional chart in hand when at the fast food restaurant. This chart will provide you with all the necessary information about your favorite food stuffs, and will also explain the general content of nutrient present in the food menu. So, if you enjoy the restaurant’s meals and sandwiches, it is crucial that you keep a check on what exactly goes into your body by keeping in handy all the Sonic facts and nutritional details.