You should avoid lemon chicken at a Chinese restaurant. Here's why.

Who doesn't know about the ubiquitous lemon chicken dish that can be found in a plethora of cuisines across the globe? You can customize it and add flavors as you like. In Lebanese cuisine, for example, you can choose to add potatoes, lime juice, salt, pepper, garlic, and olive oil for a dish that is not complicated at all but hits all the right notes (via All Recipes). Maybe you'd like to opt for a Punjabi take on the dish, like this one from NDTV Food, with sugarcane juice, onions, coriander, green chillies, and a mix of other spices?

Or perhaps you prefer a Chinese version (via Reader's Digest Asia), topped with garlic, soy sauce, vegetables, oil, sugar, bean sprouts and more. But guess what? While making the dish at home may be a good idea, ordering lemon chicken at a Chinese eatery is one option you should definitely avoid. Why, you ask? Read on to know more about the Chinese version of this popular dish. 

It is very unhealthy

What exactly sets lemon chicken at a Chinese restaurant apart from its peers? The problem is in the ingredients. The recipe calls for a lot of oil, sugar, and soy, a combination that is simply unhealthy for you, especially if you're eating all of it in one sitting. A restaurant is guaranteed to serve you lemon chicken that is dripping with oil and soy sauce, clocking up to 1,400 calories, as much as 57 percent of your daily fat requirements, and way too much sodium (via CheatSheet). A nutritionist compared this dish to treating yourself to three McDonald's sandwiches and a Coke (via Newsweek). Gulp.

You are better off health-wise if you opt for a simpler dish, such as grilled chicken with roasted vegetables on the side. Albeit a bit boring, it's far safer than scarfing down lemon chicken at a commercial establishment, which will only leave you feeling uncomfortably full, bloated and, well, guilty.