What’s on the menu?

A selection of tempting dishes, hopefully. Plus, if you happen to be frequenting certain high street restaurants, a few snippets of information which might well take the edge off your appetite – namely the calorific content of what you’re about to eat.

As the UK spa and wellness industry goes from strength to strength and the upsurge in interest in healthy lifestyles continues unabated, the public appetite for healthy, low-salt, low-calorie food certainly looks set to grow.

Hence the reason major catering companies – including many high street names such as Burger King, Pizza Hut and KFC – have voluntarily begun to publish the number of calories in the dishes on their menus. The move is part of a government campaign to stem rising obesity levels in the UK population.

Many staff canteens are participating in the campaign too, as are Prêt à Manger, Merlin Entertainment and Sainsbury’s Cafes. Similar schemes in the US, where calorie information was featured on menus, have already led to diners cutting their intake by 50 to 100 calories per restaurant visit.

Tim Smith, Chief Executive of the Food Standards Agency (FSA) explained: “Our aim is to ensure that consumers have better information so they can make informed choices to improve their diet when eating out.”

Of course if you want to dine out with impunity, safe in the knowledge that every forkful (and spoonful!) that passes your lips has been carefully vetted for salt, saturated fats and any other dietary “sins”, just book yourself in for a spa break at a leading spa hotel.

Most top spa hotels in the UK benefit from the services of a consultant dietician, who briefs all the chefs regularly on the latest information and developments in healthy eating.

Gone are the days when a spa “meal” consisted of two limp lettuce leaves and a token tomato.

Nowadays when you sit down for lunch or dinner at a UK spa you can cast aside your calorie cares and tuck into a range of wholesome and appetising dishes with a crystal-clear conscience, confident that what’s on your plate will not only taste great, but will also help keep you healthy.

No need to fear the small print on a spa menu either, so bon appetit!

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