Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Knowledge is Power: 6 < 25 (it's true!)
I'm not picking on Pax Natural Foods; it just happens to be one of the places conveniently located near my office. The service is great, the food tastes/looks good and it's a modern/attractive eatery. But like most restaurants, it can be dangerous and treacherous for the unprepared.
Up to a couple of years ago, my favorite meal at Pax was the Chicken Fajita Wrap and a 16 oz Vanilla Parfait (as I also mentioned this in my breakfast post, the parfait clearly had become a day-long staple). I chose those
two items because they seemed like pretty healthy choices. Consider the wrap: no cheese, no evidence of mayo slathering, no bacon (sadly), etc. The parfait looked mostly like yogurt with a little bit of granola and some fruit. Looks can clearly be deceiving: the wrap comes in at 16 POINTS (ouch!), and the Vanilla parfait has about 9 POINTS (hurt me!). All-in-all, 25 POINTS for lunch. Wait a minute. Isn't that pretty much my allotment for the day? Oooooops.
In an effort to get my act vaguely together, I went to the Pax website, pasted their data into an Excel spreadsheet, and calculated the POINTS values for everything they sold (geeky, I do realize).
In choosing my new Pax lunch, my objectives were 1) lots of
food/bulk/volume and 2) minimal POINTS. My winners: the Southwestern Chicken Salad with fat-free raspberry vinaigrette and a LARGE fruit salad. The salad has 3 POINTS, 1 for the dressing and 2 for the L A R G E fruit salad (it really is big). That's only 6 POINTS for BIG and tasty food.
Now Pax is my friend and not my enemy. Most restaurants can be if I simply put the effort into navigating them.