Jefferson University Hospitals

Jefferson Dietitian Says Don't Throw in the Flag; Offers Healthy Menu to Celebrate Big Game


The average armchair quarterback will consume 1,200 calories and 50 grams of fat while watching the big game, according to the Calorie Control Council. This number does not include meals eaten throughout the day.

Dietitian Emily Rubin, R.D., L.D. , with the Gastroenterology Department at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, says high numbers should only include game points, not fat or calories consumed.

“One pound is equal to 3,500 calories,” says Rubin.  “A cheesesteak is about 700 calories, add a few beers, some chips and dip, then add this amount on to what you ate for the day.  You can quickly see how fast the calories add up.”

Rubin says there are ways to enjoy the game without calories and fat adding up to astronomical numbers. “Portion control along with healthy alternatives is key. There are many choices that offer flavor, good taste and low-calories.”

Rubin suggests the following healthy menu options to celebrate:


  • Mini soft pretzels and/or hard pretzels with mustard
  • Baked tortillas chips with salsa
  • Taco dip made from low-fat cheddar, light sour cream and baked taco shells
  • Baked potato chips with onion dip made from low-fat sour cream
  • Wheat roll ups made from turkey, ham, turkey salami and low-fat American or provolone cheese, light mayo and wheat rolls
  • Shrimp cocktail
  • Grilled chicken wings
  • Low-fat cheese and turkey pepperoni tray


  • Potato salad made with light mayo
  • Pasta salad made with light Italian salad dressing and wheat pasta
  • Mozzarella and tomato salad made with part-skim mozzarella


  • Meatballs made with 90 percent lean ground meat and cooked by baking
  • Reduced-fat hot dogs
  • Roast Beef
  • Half of a hoagie, cheesesteak or chicken cheesesteak
  • Reduced-fat sausage or kielbasa
  • Barbeque chicken pieces with skin removed
  • Roast pork
  • Filet Mignon sandwiches
  • Sliders
  • Beef, shrimp and/or scallop kabobs


  • Water
  • Diet soda
  • Light juices
  • Light beer

Media Only Contact:
Jennifer McGowan Smith
Jefferson University Hospitals
Phone: 215-955-6300