You May Want To Think Twice Before Ordering Fried Zucchini At Carl's Jr.

When you think of trying to be more health-conscious, you might think of the old stereotype in which you forsake an actual dinner for a plate of unseasoned steamed vegetables and feeling pretty miserable about it. A green salad without dressing. Of course, we can find ways to work around this and enjoy some healthy eating without sacrificing flavor or starving ourselves. You can enjoy some a fresh summer salad, air-pop some popcorn to avoid the oils, grill up some lean chicken breasts — all sorts of food to prepare without worrying about making anything really fatty and greasy, and still enjoy a flavorful and filling meal.

Many fast-food places are trying to serve up "healthier" options on their menus, ranging from salads to grilled chicken to, in the case of Carl's Jr., zucchini. But before you get your hands on some veggie snacks from the Carl's Jr. down the street in the name of health, you may want to reconsider that choice and maybe go for a salad at home.

What's up with the fried zucchini at Carl's Jr.?

You may not be in the mood for salty fries or a hand-breaded chicken sandwich, and to be the healthy consumer you are, you opt for the fried zucchini. Surely these little green morsels can't be that unhealthy, right?

According to an Eat This, Not That! article ranking the relatively merits (or lack of merits) of various fast food items, you may be wrong to take nutritional refuge in that zucchini. While not as unhealthy as a Triple Fiery Famous Star (whose calories clock in around 1,150), the fried zucchini's calories total 330, with 160 of those calories coming from fat alone (via Fast Food Nutrition). A cooked zucchini's calorie levels are low — roughly 17 calories, according to Healthline — but when you slice it, coat it in breading, and then deep-fry until it's a delicious golden brown, you've pretty much added fat, oil, and carbs to the whole mix. Suffice to say, it's not the healthiest way to eat your vegetables.

We're not here to rag on Carl (or Junior, for that matter). The fried zucchini isn't the least healthy thing you can get there, and if you like it there's no shame in it. Just don't go ordering it all the time thinking it's as healthy as the side salad.