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The 5 Worst Items at Hooters

In the seventh part of our 10-part series on eating at chain restaurants, we take a look at Hooters. Check out part six, where we examine California Pizza Kitchen.

If you're all about hot wings--I know I am--Hooters is definitely the place to go! You'll find that few other restaurants can turn out such delicious wings, and the rest of their menu is pretty darn tasty as well.

Unfortunately, tasty doesn't necessarily mean healthy. You'll find that there are a lot of Hooters foods that are supremely unhealthy, and pretty much everything is fried and battered. We'll tell you the five worst offenders and offer up some moderately better alternatives. But, just to warn you, if you're looking to stick to a diet, just stay away from this place.

DON'T EAT: 20-Piece Original Hooters-Style Wings

They're damn tasty, but deep friend and tossed in buttery wing sauce. There are about 1,700 calories in this plate, and your arteries are going to cry out in distress at being clogged with so much chicken fat and frying grease.

Try the "Naked" Wings--cooked partially on the grill and made sans breading. You still get about 500 calories per 10 wings, but it's nowhere near as much as you'd get with the classic.

DON'T EAT: All the Way Hot Dog

You never know what's in a hot dog, no matter how tasty it is. This sandwich runs you up to 1,200 calories, and that's without the extra mayo and the melted cheese you're going to slather over it. The pickle is about the healthiest thing this menu item can offer.

INSTEAD EAT: The Grilled Cheese Sandwich is about as tasty as it gets, and contains roughly half the calories of the All the Way Hot Dog. It's not exactly the "healthy" choice, but it's definitely less processed than the hot dog in a white bun.

DON'T EAT: Eat: Double "D" Burger

Two thick meat patties served with American cheese and fluffy white bread may sound great, but when you consider that it's half a pound of meat, you're not going to be too thrilled. You're looking at roughly 1,400 calories in this monster, which is guaranteed to do serious damage to your heart every time you eat it.

INSTEAD EAT: Try the Philly Cheesesteak if you have to go with red meat. The steak is grilled instead of fried, and it's topped with green peppers, mushrooms, onions, and real provolone cheese. It's still served on white bread, but the meat is much lower in fat than the ground beef added into the half-pound burger.

DON'T EAT: Buff Chick Sliders

Chicken breast that has been breaded and deep fried before being coated in buttery wing sauce is delightfully tasty, but also supremely high in calories. Considering that there are four of these little bad boys served per plate, the sliders are definitely not the healthiest choice if chicken is what you're after.

INSTEAD EAT: Go for the Grilled Chicken Sandwich, a much healthier option that never met the vat of boiling oil. The grilled chicken is much lower in calories, and you can still add all of your favorite sauces just to make it tasty. Plus, you can ask for it to be served on wheat toast!

DON'T EAT: Any Appetizers

Look at the appetizer menu and you'll see it's "fried" everything--pickles, shrimp, potatoes, chicken, etc. Hooters turns all of their delicious starters into heart-unfriendly treats just by breading and frying it all, so it would be wide to avoid all of the appetizers.

INSTEAD EAT: Any Salad. It may sound silly to go to Hooters and eat a salad, but it's much better for your poor digestive system to have some roughage before you chomp down on far too many hot wings. The Shrimp and Spinach Salad is definitely the best on the menu, but the Chicken Garden and Chicken Caesar Salads are both good alternatives--provided you ask for grilled chicken, of course!

The 5 Worst Items at California Pizza Kitchen

Some people get lucky and are born with fit, toned bodies. Andy Peloquin is not one of those people... Fitness has come hard for him, and he's had to work for it. His trials have led him to becoming a martial artist, an NFPT-certified fitness trainer, and a man passionate about exercise, diet and healthy living. He loves to exercise--he does so six days a week--and loves to share his passion for fitness and health with others.

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