Former McDonald’s Exec May Bring Healthy Eating to Boston

The new restaurant caps calorie counts at 600 and sodium at 1,000 milligrams.

Lyfe Kitchen

The Lyfe Kitchen location in Palo Alto. Lyfe photo via Facebook

You don’t often find the words “McDonald’s” and “healthy” in the same sentence, but you’re about to: Former McDonald’s executive Michael Donahue is reportedly looking to expand Lyfe Kitchen, a healthy eatery with two locations in California, to Boston.

Lyfe Kitchen, unlike McDonald’s, is dedicated to healthy, convenient eating and caps all of its menu items at 600 calories and 1,000 milligrams of sodium. It’s a refreshing change from super-sized, calorie-laden meals, but we can’t resist noting that 1,000 milligrams of sodium isn’t actually that low since the daily recommended intake is 1,500 milligrams, although it does look like many menu items come in under that limit anyway. But we digress.

A Boston Business Journal report says Donahue and his team are looking into potential locations in Downtown Crossing, the Seaport District, and Faneuil Hall, and are currently looking for local restauranteurs to open a franchise. According to the report, owners are aiming to have 250 Lyfe Kitchen locations nationwide within the next five years, and as many as 10 in Greater Boston. The report quotes Donahue:

“We know Boston is a robust market for us,” said Lyfe Kitchen cofounder Michael Donahue who served as McDonald’s head of global communications. “We think Boston will be very receptive to the idea that good for you food can be great tasting.”

Donahue’s past connection with McDonald’s might prove hard for some patrons to overlook, but Boston, with its young, health-conscious residents, does seem like a great market for Lyfe Kitchen. And after checking out the menu, which features items like a Quinoa Crunch Wrap, Peas and Carrots Risotto, Ancient Grain Bowl, and better-for-you desserts, all clearly labeled with calorie and sodium counts, we’re pretty impressed. Plus, it seems like this news comes at just the right time, with healthy food trucks roaming the streets and a branch of the healthy, organic restaurant Sweet Green set to open soon on Boylston Street. Healthy eating is becoming a real trend, and we couldn’t be happier.