• I lost 73 pounds in 10 months and still like going to my favorite fast-food chains.
  • I try to order protein-packed items, like Taco Bell's black-bean Crunchwrap Supreme.
  • I load up on veggies with a tuna footlong from Subway or a bowl at Chipotle.

Like the majority of Americans who eat fast food at least once a week, I love grabbing a crispy Filet-O-Fish sandwich at McDonald's or a protein-packed Crunchwrap at Taco Bell every so often.

As someone who lost 73 pounds and is continuing to work toward other fitness goals, I prioritize lighter, more satisfying fast-food finds to help me stay full. Luckily, eating lighter meals on the run doesn't have to mean sacrificing taste or convenience.

By choosing wisely at popular fast-food chains, I can still eat delicious, balanced meals that support my taste buds and health goals. Here's what I order whenever I want to eat at my favorite chains.

The tuna footlong at Subway tastes fresh and is super filling

I order the tuna footlong from Subway with plenty of vegetables. Foto: Myriam Estrella

Subway offers lots of customization, and I love the chain's tuna footlong stacked with veggies. My go-to sandwich order includes lettuce, spinach, tomato, cucumber, pickles, green and banana peppers, and black olives.

The finished sub is brimming with protein and fiber, keeping me fueled and satisfied. I also save half of the sandwich for later, making my wallet and waistline happy. It's a tasty win-win.

The Filet-O-Fish sandwich from McDonald's is absolutely delicious

My go-to order at McDonald's is the Filet-O-Fish sandwich — it's crispy on the outside, buttery and flaky on the inside, and packed with protein to keep me going.

And yes, I'll still snag a small side of fries because they're too good to pass up. Remember, it's all about moderation, not deprivation.

The soup-and-sandwich combo from Panera has a comfort-food feel in every bite

I take advantage of Panera's You Pick Two deal by ordering soup and a full bagel sandwich. Foto: Myriam Estrella

Nothing says comfort like Panera's Mexican street-corn chowder, especially alongside a sandwich in their You Pick Two deal. This allows the customer to pair soups, pasta, half salads, or half sandwiches with each other.

For a more satisfying option, I pay $0.50 more to swap the bread for a full bagel. I typically save part of the bagel sandwich to have some leftovers for later.

I usually get a veggie-loaded bowl at Chipotle

Chipotle is my go-to stop for a flavor-packed meal I can feel good about. I usually order a bowl, which is a treasure trove of fiber from rice and beans. I also love adding a burst of flavor with salsas and vegetables.

I ask for white rice, a ton of lettuce, black and pinto beans, double tomato and roasted chile-corn salsas, guacamole, and sides of sour cream and cheese. It's seriously good and super budget-friendly.

I'll grab the black-bean Crunchwrap Supreme from Taco Bell for a tasty on-the-go meal

I add avocado-verde salsa and hot sauce to my Taco Bell black-bean Crunchwrap Supreme. Foto: Myriam Estrella

Taco Bell's black-bean Crunchwrap Supreme is a game changer. I order mine with tomatoes, lettuce, guacamole, and protein-rich black beans and top the meal with tangy avocado-verde salsa and hot sauce.

It's perfect when I'm between meetings or errands and need a quick pick-me-up.

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