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back to article McDonalds tells fatties to SUPERSIZE THEIR BRAINS

Fast food chains used to be criticised for packing their grub full of e-numbers, but now McDonalds has resorted to packaging its nosh alongside e-books in a bid to shrug off its unhealthy reputation. Fatties who frequent the burger-flipping American outlets will be given the chance to get a book from British publisher Dorling …

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As an educated Yank ...

... the entire mcdonalds franchise is a horrible, horrible embarrassment.

Passing off unhealthy crap as "food" should be illegal. Especially when luring TheGreatUnwashed[tm] in with promos like this, that have absolutely nothing to do with diet & nutrition.

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Re: As an educated Yank ...

Ebooks? After a study revealed the UK has one of the worst literacy rates in 16-24 year olds in the developed world. They need to stick with cheap and nasty plastic toys or might even be better off giving away free copies of the Sun.... Though that might be a bit too taxing on them.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: As an educated Yank ...

You do realise that the fascist thought police are taking steps to make the word fat an offensive word when directed at a person of larger build.

In fact, in the proposed Labour manifesto for the next election it has been suggested that the word 'fat' should not be used when referring to a fat person in case it hurts their feelings and the resultant comfort eating makes things worse for them.

So El Reg will fall foul of these proposed rules. Personally I believe a spade should be called a spade as a fat person should be referred to as fat, and damn anyone who tries to re-educate me.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: As an educated Yank ...

It's not fascist to not be rude to people. They "don't need to be fat", you "don't need to be a twat".

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Re: As an educated Yank ...

"As an educated Yank ... ... the entire mcdonalds franchise is a horrible, horrible embarrassment"

Why? It's not pretending to be something it isn't. It meets a clear market demand. It's globally pretty successful. And when I'm really, really hungry, a couple of Big Macs, or a Big Mac and a Chicken Legend really hit the spot. As for the sugary drinks and shakes, they can stuff those where the sun doesn't shine, likewise the horrible desserts, but the core product is something to be celebrated.

The only complaint I do have is the variability of service where they don't police the franchises effectively, but there's far worse places.

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@Jake

"Passing off unhealthy crap as "food" should be illegal."

Just what we need; a government telling us what is and isn't healthy which can then banish everything else. People in Russia often drink vodka so I'll bet that drinking vodka provokes communistic ideals; better ban that too.

In Afghanistan and Iraq lots of people drink goat milk. Must be the food for terrorists, so lets make that illegal too...

Sure I'm jesting here. But in my opinion the last thing we'd want is the government telling us what and what not to eat only because a bunch of people can't restrain themselves. There's nothing wrong with a bit of unhealthy food, as long as you make sure to balance it out.

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Re: As an educated Yank ...

"It's not fascist to not be rude to people. They "don't need to be fat", you "don't need to be a twat"."

You can replace the word "fat" with whatever you want, there will always be the same understanding behind the word and "the overweight" people will still be offended. It's a lose, lose situation.

Just out of interest what adjective would you use to describe people that eat to the point that their weight becomes an embarrasement ?

Being fat is not a disease it is a choice. ( There are exceptions but they are few and far between).

As the saying goes, you are what you eat..... If you eat a lot of fat , you become fat.... that's not being rude, it's being honest.

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Everything in moderation

Going to Mickey D's is probably okay in moderation. ie no more than once a fortnight or 3 weeks.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: As an educated Yank ...

educated Yank ...

anyone else see the irony here with the name calling

"the entire mcdonalds franchise is a horrible, horrible embarrassment"

so lobby a congressman

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Anonymous Coward

Re: As an educated Yank ...

" I believe a spade should be called a spade"

You do know that has a second meaning? Think about playing cards and you'll get there. That is why it is no longer a saying in common use...

As to Maccie D's after a night binging on the beers, a couple of big macs is the least of my health worries and they're less likely to give me the shits for a couple of days then most of the other high-street food dispensaries.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: As an educated Yank ...

Your fat!

Your fat!

Your fat!

Your fat!

Your fat!

Your fat!

Your fat!

Your fat!

Your fat!

Your fat!

Your fat!

There, got out of my system.

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Re: Everything in moderation

"Everything in moderation - including moderation" - Oscar Wilde (although I can always hear Billy Connolly saying it).

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Headmaster

@ AC 17:22 GMT

His fat what?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: As an educated Yank ...AC@1711

You don't see it do you, you must be German.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: As an educated Yank ...@AC1722

YOU'RE

YOU'RE

YOU'RE

Please.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: As an educated Yank ...

As the saying goes, you are what you eat..... If you eat a lot of fat , you become fat.... that's not being rude, it's being honest.

Yes you're right, but this is the attitude that is the problem, not the fatties easting too much:

You do realise that the fascist thought police are taking steps to make the word fat an offensive word when directed at a person of larger build.

Yes, the person may be fat, that might be a perfectly truthful description of them. But do *you* need to be going up to them and saying "Hey fatty! Whatcha doing fatty?". It is taking one aspect of their appearance and using it as a denigrating slur that is frowned upon.

Similarly, going up to someone on the street and saying "You're fat" - it might be true, but it is just as rude as saying "You're ugly". The original AC was complaining that the "fascist thought police" are taking away his ability to offend people, I was trying to point out that you don't need to go around offending people.

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Re: As an educated Yank ...

"the core product is something to be celebrated."

That is exactly what's wrong with the world right there.

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Headmaster

Re: As an educated Yank ...

You're*

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Re: As an educated Yank ...

Similarly, going up to someone on the street and saying "You're fat" - it might be true, but it is just as rude as saying "You're ugly".

No. Fatness is a choice, ugliness isn't.

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Happy

Does anyone wanna bet

that McDonald's will ever be offering books containing credible nutrition advice?

To be fair, it's not like they force anyone to eat (what they call) 'food'.

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JDX
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Re: Does anyone wanna bet

Well they already list nutrition advice on all their food in-store, and calories on the menu itself, (I think).

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@JDX (was: Re: Does anyone wanna bet)

"food"?

Post proof or retract.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Does anyone wanna bet

I know a nutritionist who has worked both in the industry and on the government side on food labelling, providing access to nutritional facts and advice and various other schemes and she says that McDonald's has always been amongst the most helpful and honest of companies in this area.

It's not their products or the information they provide that makes them an embarrassment - top of the list must be the relentless marketing to children of which this scheme is the latest example.

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Re: Does anyone wanna bet

It's the advertising and marketing that's the evil bit here - sure the food isn't the greatest, but one meal is unlikely to adversely affect your health assuming you have a diet that is vaguely healthy.

Cue Bill Hick's routine regarding advertising and marketing....

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Facepalm

Ermmm, but if you still consume the e-numbers surely the damage is still being done and you still can't get your head around the book they've offered? It's like a hotel saying, "Sorry you got sunburnt on our private beach, here's two free passes to the tanning salon in the hotel."!

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"but if you still consume the e-numbers surely the damage is still being done"

E-numbers are not damaging. E-numbers are a labeling scheme. Look up E300 and then tell me it's a poison!

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Joke

I Googled 'E300' and found an expensive hybrid car. The reviews are all great, so it's no lemon.

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Anonymous Coward

Big Food trying to get themselves in the same sentence as healthy.

Similar to tooth rotting substances having 'nutritional' information on them and manufacturers of fat inducing substances sponsoring the Olympics.

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"Big Food trying to get themselves in the same sentence as healthy."

Maybe, but I don't care. A Big Mac may not be proper food, but there's times when only something of that calorie density will do, and the golden arches are a welcome sight. I'm not fat (in fact two stone lighter than the beginning of this year), and rather resent the snooty "oh, such fatty plebian junk, it should be banned/taxed etc". And if those who dine there too regularly wish to do so, and "lard up", why not allow them to do so?

Admittedly there's a health cost we all bear from the overweight, but as with smoking, I'll wager that the pension and life extension health costs that arise from successfully stopping people becoming hambeasts are greater than the costs of living with the problem and dying earlier.

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"there's times when only something of that calorie density will do, and the golden arches are a welcome sight"

And is there really no other option than a multinational on those occasions? Support your locally owned and run greasy spoon and go for a bacon sarnie* (and a proper cup of tea) there instead.

*substitute kebab shop / chicken shish, or chippie / fish&chips, or whichever other option works best for you.

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"And is there really no other option than a multinational on those occasions? Support your locally owned and run greasy spoon and go for a bacon sarnie* (and a proper cup of tea) there instead."

I do that as well, but this thread was about McDonalds. I think the very varied quality of greasy spoons and "traditional fast food" are part of the reasons for the success of the big chains. I love a proper Cornish pasty, but I'd say that the good ones are outnumbered by the bad in a ratio around ten or twenty to one, and those bad ones tend to feature undercooked onion accompanied by gristle in salty brown water, all wrapped in an LD50 of heavy, unpleasant pastry. Likewise, the best fishnyips can be infinitely more succulent than McDonalds offerings, but you really need to know the establishment before going there, to avoid the charlatans flogging expensive, badly cooked, bone riddled coley fillets accompanied by pale, flacid, greasy chips. Even the simple bacon sarnie can be a problem, with poor availability of bread of the requisite thickness and quality, and a common enthusiasm for cheap and undercooked bacon.

The whole point of McD's is that the product is fairly well standardised (so I know what I can order before I get there, and what it will be like when I get it), and the food is processed and homogenised (so that I don't end up with mouthfuls of blubber or gristle). Or perhaps more correctly, I can't tell that I have ordered and chosen to eat something made from blubber, gristle, spincter, eyeball, ear, spleen, nostril, and every other dangly, wobbly dirty bit of cow.

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...but there's times when only something of that calorie density will do

Good point but, disappointingly, you can still be hungry after a Big Mac. Despite the calories it's not a large meal. All you are eating is a small serving of mince meat, half a potato and a small amount of bread.

For roughly the same calorie intake (~1050) you could eat a Sunday roast dinner or even large fish+chips. I know which would fill me up more.

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"Good point but, disappointingly, you can still be hungry after a Big Mac. "

I find hunger can be kept at bay by two Big Macs. On one occaision I did have to add a cheesburger as well.

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This is exactly the kind of bad eating habits that most doctors would like to see people avoid.

2 Big Macs and a Cheese = (2 * 510) + 255 = 1265 Kcal and thats before you add any soft drinks or a desert.....

The nutrional value adds up top about a 3rd of what you need for the day. ( There's little or no fibre though).

That means you would need to eat 3 of these, therefore 3795 kcal worth of MacDo to meet your daily needs.. A normal adult male requries about 2200-2500 Kcal, everything else turns to fat...... Unless of course you are very athletic person - in such a case you probably wouldn't be eating MacDos.

An occasional macDo is not a bad thing, a regular macDo is a killer

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"This is exactly the kind of bad eating habits that most doctors would like to see people avoid."

I'd hardly say that my very infrequent binge eating at Chez Ronnie is a matter for the concern of doctors. But your post seems to have got itself in a muddle. I'd need to eat 2x my McDo blow out to hit my calories for the day, not 3x.

And even I'd draw the line at six Big Macs and three cheeseburgers in one day. That could sit heavily, and it could mean a "three flusher" the next day.

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No it's not to reach your calorie limit, it's to reach the daily requirements that your body requires in order to have the correct balance of proteins, carbs, lipides etc. It's very easy to reach the calorie intake, it takes a little more effort inorder to reach the recommended requirements without exceeding calories intake.

In other words, you are forced to overeat in order to reach the level that the body requires.

Calories are in general the energy/fuel as a whole, they do not represent the quality of the fuel.

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"A normal adult male requries about 2200-2500 Kcal"

Although you're on the right track you've been taken in by the various (quite old) literature on the subject as have most people. A "normal" adult male in the year 2013 requires considerably fewer calories per day to maintain weight. Normal these days being someone who gets up, goes to work and sits in front of a computer, then home to watch TV. A "normal" adult male at the time 2500 was quoted was significantly more active with much of the population still in manual jobs, and even those in offices were much more active.

What you actually need to say is an ACTIVE adult male requires about 2500 calories per day to maintain weight. Once this wording is used then it becomes more obvious to the fatties why they are fat. It's not a lack of broccoli, or too much fat, or "e-numbers" it's a lack of exercise and too much going in.

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some detail...

I posted a bit later on about metabolic measurements. I do not know how much they cost in the UK (i.e. will your GP pay for one) but I think it would be an excellent use of NHS resources to urgently get a massive sample of the population and calculate exactly what calorie intakes look like for the modern society.

As you said many of the studies are quite old. That doesn't make them bad, but there is a lot more known about molecular physiology than then.

Besides, it is much easier to do controlled diet studies on lab animals...

P.

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"No it's not to reach your calorie limit, it's to reach the daily requirements that your body requires in order to have the correct balance of proteins, carbs, lipides etc"

I don't think anybody really mooted trying to live on McDonalds, with the exception of that film producer trying to make a point that you can't live on the stuff. But that's no more extreme than saying you can't live on any unbalanced diet, processed or not. Even on a balanced diet I doubt that most people get their fully daily requirement of everything.

In fact, today's a fast day for me. So I've probably not acheieved my daily allowance for anything. But that (the Michael Moseley Fast Diet) is one way of enjoying McDonalds and not ending up a lard arse.

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Re: some detail...

"As you said many of the studies are quite old. That doesn't make them bad"

Oh they are certainly not bad, just the figures are very misused much like the "you must drink 60 glasses of water a day or you'll die" nonsense :)

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Alert

supersize me....

..if you haven't seen it it is worth a look. In particular the extras (I saw it on DVD) they have a comparison of food decomposition...

The went and bought a burger from a normal restaurant, and then put it under a glass cover.

They did the same to McD Big Mac, fish thing? and Mc Fries.

The burgers started to degrade (the natural one first, the Bigmac took weeks?). The amazing thing was the fries just didn't degrade...

You know you are eating toxic muck when even the *microbes* won't have at it!!

P.

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Re: supersize me....

"You know you are eating toxic muck when even the *microbes* won't have at it!!"

I'm afraid this is bogus. How long can you leave a bag of flour in your cupboard? A pot of sugar? A sack of rice? If the fries aren't moist, and they go into a clean dry environment, they will probably dry before they rot. See also drying flowers, naturally mummification, etc.

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Pint

Re: supersize me....

I think the point of the "supersize" experiment was that the fries are so "preserved" they naturally are sort of antibiotic..in a chemical way and an environmental way....in essence pickled from the store ;-) It is well known they have high sugar/salt content, not a surprise they don't rot so well. I'm sure you've heard "the immortal twinkie"...;-) Since we expect to keep flour/sugar/rice for weeks/months(years!), that is why they are kept dry. I am not sure it follows for "fast food". Besides the other items rotted, though slowly...

This experiment bears repeating in a formal way perhaps with other brands of food...?

I'd do this in the lab with McD's only I'd get hassle from the manager about bringing food in...I'd rather be making beer in there for that amount of aggro....

It has been at least 5 years since I saw the DVD, so if anyone else has a better recollection...?

Beer, one fast food that needs care and attention...

P.

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Yag

"The Goat Who Ate Everything"

At least Mc Donald's customers will be able to identify themselves in this character...

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Not meaning to be cynical, but …

“This is the latest step in our ongoing efforts to enrich the lives of families”

Specifically which families are to be enriched is not mentioned, but I suspect it’s the families of McDonalds share holders.

“Books are essential for inspiring children to explore, dream, and achieve, yet far too many children do not have this basic resource”

Of course, we assume that the target market is those who can’t afford or can’t be bothered with real books, but have the money to spend on junk food and ebook readers …

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Only four books?

Thats barely a weeks supply of burgers for some familys

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Devil

MacEbook?

Sounds like bloatware to me...

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MJA

The fact there was a giant McDonald's in the middle of the Olympic park in London says it all really.

I don't agree that fat people should be given an easy time but there needs to be some sort of limit to them being set up everywhere.

I have the same opinion of those rubbish Pret stores and coffee chains. The difference is the big players like McD seem to be able to put some money aside into charities and sports etc and get given a free pass to exploit. Fatty, unhealthy food is only half the story.

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