You Should Never Order Eggplant Tofu At Panda Express

As far as Chinese fast food is concerned, few names in the industry come close to the legendary brand that is Panda Express. According to the official Panda Express website, the journey began in 1983 when founder Andrew Cherng decided to open the chain's first outlet in Glendale, California. The brand now has over 2,000 outlets across the country and claims to be the biggest family-owned Asian chain of its kind in the U.S.

That said, like all fast food places, the restaurant has its share of advantages and flaws. As per Eat This, Not That!, the health-conscious diner especially needs to be mindful while choosing to dine at Panda Express because as tasty as the dishes are, you're looking at excessive sodium, fat, and calories if you're not careful. The meal foundation is flawed: if you're scarfing down rice and noodles with your meal, you can expect to take in as much as 400 calories at the very least. It's wiser to avoid starchy options. 

There also specific dishes that might sound tempting but that you're better off not eating. Here's a tip: Forget about ordering the eggplant tofu at Panda Express. Here is why.

The eggplant tofu is too fatty and sugary

Are you asking yourself what could possibly go wrong with the combination of two wholesome ingredients such as eggplants and tofu? Well, if you're eating that at Panda Express, you may want to take a closer look. According to Panda Express's nutritional information, one  6-ounce plate of eggplant tofu will cost you 340 calories. That might not sound too bad on its own, but the dish has a surprising amount of fat: a whopping 24 grams. Seriously! It also has 520 milligrams of sodium, 17 grams of sugar, and just 7 grams of protein. 

While you may feel rather pleased about feasting on a combination of tofu, eggplant, and bell peppers all dressed up in a tangy sauce, you won't be doing your health any favors. Considering how healthy you might expect a plate of tofu and veggies to be, this is pretty disappointing. Avoid this option and opt for something healthier like the Grilled Teriyaki Chicken or Honey Walnut Shrimp (via Women's Health Mag). As always, remember that looks are deceiving, and it's best to do your research before going for a seemingly healthy option on the menu at a fast food eatery.