Date Approved


Date Posted


Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department or School

Health Sciences

Committee Member

Judi Brooks, Ph.D., R.D., Chair

Committee Member

Alice Jo Rainville, Ph.D., R.D., C.H.E., S.N.S., F.A.N.D.


Calcium, vitamin D, fiber, and potassium are widely underconsumed in the U.S. This study analyzes nutrition information from quick service restaurants to determine the fast-food industry⁰́₉s contribution of these nutrients to the American diet. The menu offerings of top-grossing quick-service restaurants in each of seven categories, McDonald's℗ʼ (burger), Subway℗ʼ (sandwich), Taco Bell℗ʼ (Mexican), Pizza Hut℗ʼ (pizza), Chick-fil-A℗ʼ (chicken), Panda Express℗ʼ (Asian), and Long John Silver's℗ʼ (seafood), were analyzed for calcium, vitamin D, fiber, potassium, and calories. The highest mean values of key nutrients were found at Pizza Hut (256.4 mg calcium), McDonald⁰́₉s (0.509 mcg vitamin D), Taco Bell (4.4 g fiber, foods only), and Chick-fil-A (375.5 mg potassium). Significant differences among restaurants were found for all nutrients at a p-value of < 0.01 for calcium, fiber and potassium, and < 0.05 for vitamin D. McDonald⁰́₉s and Subway provided the most nutrient-dense menu items with 303 and 238 items, respectively.

Included in

Nutrition Commons