Are Wraps Healthier Than Sandwiches?
Discover the truth about questions that pique your curiosity in our Short Answer series. Dietitian Anna Taylor, MS, RD, LD, answers this one.
A: That depends. Some tortilla wraps contain more calories and carbohydrates than two slices of bread. For example, if you are making lunch at home, a typical 10-inch tortilla contains about 170 to 200 calories. Two slices of bread could contain anywhere between 70 and 280 calories, depending on which type of bread you use.
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Many delis and restaurants use tortilla wraps that are around 300 calories — just for the wrap itself! And once you add in the calories from the fillings and condiments (not to mention that side of chips), you may end up with a very high-calorie lunch.
The best way to decide on a sandwich versus a wrap? Read the nutrition facts label. If you’re eating out, ask for nutrition facts before ordering, or look them up online. Compare your options, focusing on Serving Size, Calories, Total Carbohydrates, and Total Fiber.
Finally, choose 100% whole grain whenever available. Although spinach wraps may look and sound healthier, they contain only trace amounts of spinach and are typically made with refined grains — meaning no calorie or carb savings, and no added fiber. Instead, when choosing a sandwich or a wrap, load it up with real, fresh vegetables for real added health benefits.
— Dietitian Anna Taylor, MS, RD, LD