By Karen Gainey, McDonald’s Owner/Operator in the Triad

It’s easy to get off track with our eating habits during the summer. Trips to the pool, baseball games, family vacation and summer camps all make it easier for families to choose convenient over healthy. But summer dining options can be both healthy and good on the go.

Maybe you’ve never thought of McDonald’s when considering healthy eating options on the go but you can as the Golden Arches continues to expand its healthy options for both adults and children. It’s more than just wraps and apple slices. McDonald’s has healthy options for each meal of the day.

For instance, a Happy Meal isn’t just a Happy Meal any more. A McDonald’s Happy Meal can include apple slices along with fries, and a small jug of low-fat white milk or fat-free chocolate milk, or apple juice box instead of a soft drink. These options are still kid-friendly, can be taken on the go, and are healthier.

The milk jug offers one cup of milk or 30 percent of the daily value for calcium. It also satisfies one of three of the daily-recommended servings of dairy. The apple slices provide about a fourth of a cup of fruit and the apple juice box counts as a serving of fruit. And now, McDonald’s has Low-fat Strawberry Go-GURT, another on-the-go option that keeps health as a priority while combining the fun of Go-GURT with the calcium and reduced sugar that parents love.

Grabbing a Happy Meal on the way to a soccer game or walk in the park is a great option for children, but adults may need something a bit more filling.

How about a premium grilled chicken sandwich or grilled chicken snack wrap for mom and dad? The grilled chicken sandwich and grilled chicken snack wraps are made with boneless, skinless white chicken meat and offer a serving of protein for anyone on the go. The bakery style bun of the premium chicken sandwich provides eight grams of whole grain, making the premium chicken sandwich that much more of a healthy alternative.

Then there are the McDonald’s premium salads. Each premium salad has about three cups of vegetables. The side salad is close behind with about two cups of vegetables.

Eating healthy doesn’t mean being anchored to a table. Even a healthy breakfast can be enjoyed on the go. McDonald’s Fruit and Maple Oatmeal is more than just delicious. It also has 32 grams of whole grains with raisins and apples and more than half of the daily-recommended 48 grams of whole grain. The McCafe Fruit Smoothies offer about half a serving of fruit and are a great way to start the day.

If you want a breakfast that will keep you fuller longer, there’s the Egg White Delight McMuffin. At just 250 calories, the Egg White Delight McMuffin combines grilled egg whites with extra lean Canadian bacon and white cheddar on a toasted English muffin with eight grams of whole grains. The Fruit ‘N Yogurt Parfait is another low calorie option that combines low-fat vanilla yogurt with layers of blueberries and strawberries with crunchy granola and can be either breakfast, dessert or a wholesome snack to help you get through the day.

There are more than a dozen favorites at McDonald’s that are less than 400 calories. Ranging from breakfast sandwiches and salads to McCafe beverages and even a few desserts, McDonald’s can be a partner in healthy eating and wholesome choices under $10. (For the complete list of Favorites Under 400, visit

It’s hard enough to stick to a diet or stay committed to eating healthy, so let McDonald’s fill in some of the gaps with its wholesome options that make each meal fun, healthy and as versatile and mobile as you.

For more information on our commitment to nutrition, visit our website at www.mcdonald’ or check us out on Twitter@McD_Triad!

*Today’s blog is sponsored by McDonald’s.