Find out what to nix the next time you build your bowl.
The bowl trend has been sweeping the nation for a few years now, making its way from foodies’ kitchens to small, health-conscious restaurants in big cities, and now, many popular fast food chain restaurants jumped on the bowl mania bandwagon. These meals consist of layers of ingredients eaten out of a bowl—with a fork or a spoon—often packing a few different food groups into one vessel. While a smoothie bowl or acai bowl might work more fruits into your daily diet—including greens—if you pile on toppings with abandon, you could be adding a ton of extra calories, fat, and added sugar to your diet. Here are seven toppings to be mindful of if you’re watching your weight, and tips on how to make healthier choices when you’re ordering or creating these bowl-based meals.
Be Mindful When Choosing Toppings
There are some [positive] nutrition benefits from the bowl trend,” says Sonya Angelone, R.D.N., a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. “The good news is that these bowls are a convenient way to get more produce since most of them include fruits or vegetables. Whether you’re eating a burrito bowl, an acai bowl or smoothie bowl at breakfast, a quinoa bowl, or a poke (POH-keh) bowl, there are some pros and cons to be aware of, Angelone advises. “Bowls are a fun way to eat a variety of foods and flavors and a great way to stock up on produce. However, they can be pitfalls with high-calorie ingredients that undermine the healthful benefits of bowl dining,” she says.