Why “Happy Meals” Make Me Sad
My nieces LOVE McDonald’s Happy Meals. Really for the coveted plastic prizes, but nevertheless they certainly enjoy the tasty french fries and chicken nuggets. Ever the indulgent Aunt, I occasionally give in to their plaintive pleas and get them those Happy Meals.
When I was a young child, I also coveted the media marketers’ plastic treasure du jour, planted strategically between McDonald’s glistening fries and decoratively wax-wrapped hamburger.
On a purely primal level, I find the taste of any fast food hamburger and french fries palatable. (Un?)fortunately, I now “know too much.” I cannot ignore that man behind the curtain, for I have read Michael Pollan’s books, The Omnivore’s Dilemma and In Defense of Food. I highly recommend these books to you if you want to know what you are REALLY putting into your body. Knowledge is power. You already use the best in fitness equipment. Now educate and empower yourself to put the best food to fuel your body for maximum performance and vitality.
The fast food chapters are particularly eye-opening. Some snippets of what I learned:
- In the 1970’s, the livestock industry was altered to use up corn surpluses that were depressing the price of grain.
- Cows, no longer raised on pastures, now stand shackled to feedlot railings, forced to feast on corn—not grass. Corn fattens them faster.
- Of the 38(!) ingredients that constitute a chicken McNugget, thirteen are corn-based.
- Corn-fed chickens, pumped full of antibiotics, are fattened with freakishly large breasts on exiguous legs to reach prime slaughter age faster.
- Other corn ingredients in chicken nuggets include: modified corn starch, corn flour, corn oil, and triglycerides.
I could go on much further, but you get the idea. You are not only what you eat, but also what you eat ate.
Guest Blogger and Fitness Enthusiast