As consumers get ready to make New Year’s resolutions to eat more healthful foods, restaurants are preparing to cater to those intentions, according to new MenuMonitor data from Chicago-based Technomic.
The research firm found that many restaurants have increased menu offerings that are low in fat, calories and sugar and are promoting them more prominently on menus.
“Dieting consumers don’t always view restaurants as a safe place to eat, either because they don’t recognize diet-compatible options or are too tempted to indulge themselves when eating out,” Darren Tristano, executive vice president of Technomic, said in a statement “However, the number of healthful dishes offered at restaurants continues to grow, and operators are increasingly interested in touting healthy benefits on their menus.”
Technomic found that:
• Use of the word “healthy” within menu descriptions has increased 86 percent over the past year.
• Use of “low fat” within menu descriptions has increased 33 percent over the past year.
• Use of “fat free” and/or “nonfat” has increased 12 percent over the past year.
• Use of “no sugar” has increased 51 percent over the past year.
• Use of “low-calorie” has increased 154 percent over the past year.