www.whyville.net Jun 13, 2003 Weekly Issue

Times Editor

Salad? No Thanks, I'm on a Diet

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If you watch TV at all, you must have seen all those commercials about the new salads that McDonald's is now introducing. At first, I thought it was really great that the fast food restaurants were offering an alternative to the usual fatty burger and fries we are all used to. In a Big Mac alone, there are 590 calories and 34 grams of fat. This does not include the order of fries that it comes with and the soda everyone thinks they want. So, a salad sounds like a great idea! The truth might not be so great, however. Well, here are the nutritional facts for some of the McDonald's salads, let's let the numbers tell the tale:

A plain McDonald's Caesar salad has 6.7 ounces of crunchy mixed greens, tomatoes, shaved carrots and grated Parmesan cheese. This comes in with only 90 calories and 4 grams of fat.

If you want to add the grilled chicken to it, you gain around 20 grams of protein (yay!) but with the good also comes the bad -- this salad with the chicken weighs in at 120 calories and 3 grams of fat.

If you choose to add the creamy dressing that comes with the salad, you add around 190 calories, 18 grams of fat. So if you have the salad, chicken, and creamy dressing your grand total will be: 310 calories 21 grams of fat. Not too shabby for a fast food salad. If you think about it, this is actually pretty good for McDonald's.

Go for the Bacon Ranch Salad and it's a different story. If you go for the "basic model" (mixed greens topped with both Cheddar and jack cheeses and bacon bits) and it's 140 calories and 10 fat grams!! Geez! The other salad is starting to look a lot better to me! How 'bout you? But wait! That's just the BASIC one. If you get it with grilled chicken you hit the 270 calorie mark. And if you get the crispy chicken instead, you have 370 calories (21 grams of fat). If you put on a packet of ranch dressing to top it off, you're looking at 660 calories with 51 fat grams.

Here's how it works out:
Caesar salad w/ chicken and dressing: 310 calories and 21 grams of fat
Bacon Ranch salad w/ crispy chicken & dressing: 660 calories and 51 grams of fat
Big Mac: 590 calories and 34 fat grams
Two slices of pepperoni pizza @ Dominoes: 560 calories and 20 grams of fat
Proving McDonald's wrong: Priceless!

LOL! Just kidding!

But seriously, salad? No thanks, I'm on a diet!

Unfortunately, the pickings are no better at the other fast food joints. It gets worse, in fact!
Burger King's chicken Caesar weighs in with 495 calories and 27 grams of fattiness.
Taco Bell takes the cake, though: its express taco salad w/ chips come in with 620 calories, 21 grams of fat, OR you can get the taco salad in a fried tostado shell (drum roll please!)... a whopping 790 calories and 42 fat grams!

Whew! Even though the nutritional values are not very good, we thank all these fast food entrepreneurs for their efforts.

Going to look for a carrot,


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