Saturday, 11 August 2012

Eat this not that! Grrrrrrrrr!

I'm irritated!

I appreciate that gentleman's health magazines are not just for those of us looking to lose a few pounds and that editorially the journalist needs to cover all bases but what I've seen today should have been the tag line for a McDonalds marketing campaign rather than guidance within such a magazine.

The 'eat this not that' approach is a well trodden path for your average health magazine food section and whilst I will always have a certain amount of contempt for debates about whether a pre-packaged M&S Caesar's Salad is better for you or not, than the equivalent from Waitrose, I have admittedly lost the odd 30 seconds to examine such a debate.

Don't get me wrong, I'm certainly not suggesting I'm above ever buying such an item, just that typically when I have, it's most likely to have been because I was on the road somewhere, had planned badly in terms of bringing food and hence am scanning the nutrition labels of such items in whatever food establishment that the rest of my travel compatriots have chosen to fill there faces.

I have certainly never found myself in such a scenario debating whether to go into Waitrose or to try and locate the nearest M&S because the Caesar has 1 less gram of saturated fat!

I do a lot of travelling, mostly driving my son and his team mates around the country for rugby matches. In general my preparation is pretty good and despite others in the car tucking into the finest road side delicacies at regular intervals I do, motivated by wanting to know exactly what I am eating rather than risking the unknown, tend to prepack an ice bag.

Anyway, I'm drifiting slightly, back to my irritation.....

I can live with the odd Caesar comparison despite my mild contempt but today such an article has made my blood boil.

Come on guys! Get serious!

As you can see from the above, the said article recommends a whole book of such comparisons and gives an example that you should eat a McDonalds Big Mac rather than a Whopper with cheese from Burger King. Sound nutritional advice no doubt, if stranded on a desert island with the only food source being these two restaurants (not that unlikely given their world domination!). However I struggle to understand how a 'health' magazine can justify such advice in any scenario.

Ponder if you will, despite it's new found position as a Superfood, that a Big Mac from Mcdonalds contains the following nutrition:

  • 24g of fat of which 10g is saturated!
  • 490kcal calories
  • 41g of Carbohydrate of which 8g are sugars
  • The wheat flour in the bun has added to it; Extra gluten, sugar, emulsifiers and preservatives
  • The cheese is only 51% cheese! How scary is that? 
  • The sauce contains high GI high fructose corn syrup, fatty vegetable oil and more preservatives

Bearing in mind that typically this then gets consumed along with a portion of medium fries and a thick shake and you've added a further; 720 Kcal, 24g of fat (7g saturated) and an absolutely staggering 53g of sugar!!! (That's a total of eleven teaspoons of sugar!).

For the calorie counters amongst you that's a total of around 1200kcal or 60% GDA for a female in one meal (remember I think you should eat five times a day!). I won't even bother calculating what percentage it is of your GDA for fat and sugar as it is blowing away a few days worth of allowance in the sugar alone!

I think what tickles me most about this is the catch line on the article; 'the book that makes fat loss easy'! That's probably true if you apply the principle to never eat a single thing within in!

I think the only correct thing about this advert, is the statement; 'Thousands of surprising food swaps' which hits the nail on the head for me. I'm surprised, very surprised!

So come on guys! Let's get serious about this kind of article - it has no place in a health magazine. If you want to compare burgers then why not compare such abominations with a homemade lean beef burger, served without a bun or fries!

Am I being too hard on these guys and our American restaurant friends? Let me know what you think?

No comments:

Post a Comment