On Saturday 9th October Ronald McDonald will be celebrating his 30th Birthday. And to mark the occasion the good people at McDonald’s will be offering customers “free” birthday hamburger vouchers on Saturday 25th September. Well done them.
To coincide with the birthday proceedings and as an attempted bite on the bum for Morgan Spurlock and his film Super Size Me, McDonald’s UK have launched a website www.supersizeme-thedebate.co.uk.
The website attempts to show how you can eat healthy meals at McDonald’s, by offering seven days worth of “healthy option” menus. So really according to them we can have our McFlurry and eat it. Well kind of.
‘Super Size Me’ creator Morgan Spurlock decided to investigate the birthday celebrations and see if the “healthy option” menus we all they were cracked up to be.
Concentrate here comes the science:
He was alarmed to find out that not only were the food options “totally lopsided and top heavy with salads (with and without dressing), water, and OJ and a crapload of apples and other fruit options.” They only offered, “ONE soda for the entire week, only small fries, not to mention only 1 cheeseburger and 2 hamburgers”, McDonald’s biggest selling items. Most alarmingly his investigation found that the nutritional content of each meal consistently exceeded the UK's RDA (Recommend Daily Allowance) of calories from saturated fat, as well as salt/sodium.
“I used the McDonald’s UK site's nutritional calculator to figure all this out, at the prompting of one of our alert British fans who sent the Super Size Me website a note about the salt. I poked further and discovered all the fat/sat fat info. You'll find this site posts calories and total fat next to each day's menu, and with ONLY that information, the meals do indeed meet the country's RDA (barely). But when you dig deeper and look at saturated fat and salt, you're in trouble. And this is with a week's worth of ridiculously "light" fare and little variety.”
Spurlock adds, “Results for the most part were pretty close to the calories and fat totals shown next to the meal options on the site www.supersizeme-thedebate.co.uk. ” with the glaring exception of Meal #2. The website says it has 1954 calories, yet using the nutrition calculator I get 1693 calories, which doesn’t even reach the UK’s RDA for girls aged 11-14 (1845). Incidentally, if you read the fine print on the Balanced Diet home page within the anti-SSM site, it boasts that each day the meal meets the caloric RDA for WOMAN, which is 1940. So none of the options even meet the caloric RDA for men, which the site says is 2550”
The full breakdown for Morgan Spurlock’s findings are detailed below, with the saturated fat and sodium content listed for McDonald’s “healthy option” daily menu. The results are to say the least, are a little scary.
Super Size Me is on general release across the UK.
NB: All Figures In BOLD Exceed The Uk’s Recommended Daily Allowances:
UK’s RDA’s from the Food Standard Agency website www.food.gov.uk
Calories from fat not to exceed 35% (in the USA, not to exceed 30%)
Calories from saturated fat not to exceed 11% (in the USA, not to exceed 10%)
Salt 6 g (essentially the same as the US, which measures sodium)
Bacon & Egg McMuffin
OJ (reg size I assume)
Lunch Quorn Premier
Garden Salad with Balsamic dressing
Fruit & Yogurt
Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad w/dressing and croutons
Strawberry Milkshake (reg)
Total Fat 60.21 g
Calories from fat 541.89 (29%)
Saturated Fat 26.8 g
Calories from Saturated Fat 241.2 (12.92%)
Salt 9.6 g
Total Fat 66.14 g
Calories from fat 595.26 (35%) – this is the max
Saturated Fat 27.6 g
Calories from Saturated Fat 248.4 (14.6%)
Total Fat 67.43 g
Calories from fat 606.87 (31.8%)
Saturated Fat 25.15 g
Calories from Saturated Fat 226.35 (11.87%)
Salt 7.08 g
Total Fat 66.31 g
Calories from fat 596.79 (30.7%)
Saturated Fat 26.69 g
Calories from Saturated Fat 240.21 (12.36%)
Salt 7.55 g
Total Fat 69.13 g
Calories from fat 622.17 (32.8%)
Saturated Fat 31.6 g
Calories from Saturated Fat 284.4 (15%)
Salt 6.03 g
Total Fat 67.3 g
Calories from fat 605.7 (31.8%)
Saturated Fat 20.4 g
Calories from Saturated Fat 183.6 (9.6%)
Salt 7.73 g
Total Fat 72.22 g
Calories from fat 649.98 (32.96%)
Saturated Fat 28.99 g
Calories from Saturated Fat 260.91 (13.23%)
Salt 8.65 g