Friday, September 30, 2011

Should a fat governor run for president?

It's all over the Internet. The women of The View can't stop chattering about it. Does it matter that Governor Christie is fat--really fat, visibly fat, overly fat. I am not a supporter of his politics but I keep wondering about all the hoopla over his weight. Our present president was an admitted smoker when he was elected. Is this outcry and interest over Christie's weight just a fat acceptance issue? Is his life (health) more in jeopardy than Obama's was when he was a smoker (Obama says he's conquered his habit). Even I'm not so sure how I feel about this! Health seems to be an important issue for a president. The electorate wondered about McCain's age. Obama's smoking. I wondered about Bush's substance abuse issues way back when. Well, as far as we know, Bush didn't relapse, McCain is still hanging in there and Obama has stopped smoking without any apparent ill effects. So, does it matter that Christie is fat? Shouldn't we be focusing on his politics????

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Fast Food and Calories

I don't eat fast food. I've never tasted Wendy's or Burger King or Taco Bell. Have only had McD's a few times because that was my kids' favorite when they were young. Never been to Arby's or Carl's Jr. Can't say that I don't like the food because I've never sampled it. Just never liked the way the food smelled so was never tempted.
A new fast food burger restaurant from California opened up near our house this past week. I knew my husband wanted to try it. Since I was busy watching the Emmys, I suggested he bring some food home from the place. Before he left, I checked the web site for the menu and also clicked on the nutrition info tab.
Whoa. Burger, 470 calories. French fries, 440 calories. Chocolate shake, 820 calories. What! So one meal could add up to more calories than I should have in a day. And, honestly, wasn't that much food in quantity. Holy #*%.
I know. I'm a dietitian. I should know how many calories are in these foods but when it comes to restaurants (whether fast food or traditional), I have no idea how they prepared the food so I can't guess how many calories are in the dish. Take the burger from this new place: thin, didn't look like it weighed more than 3 ounces. The bun? Just an ordinary white bun, a little too large for the burger. A smear of mayo, some lettuce, one slice of tomato and two pickle slices. The fries. Well, okay. Fried in oil. I get it. The shake? What do they put in the shake? I didn't have one so I don't know how thick it was or how big but that's a lot of calories for one drink!
Pretty shocking.
A while back when NYC was getting ready to start posting nutrition information in fast food restaurants, I gave an interview to a journalist about the impending posting. I didn't think it would make any difference to the ordinary consumer who was making choices based solely on taste (and maybe also price). I thought  an informed consumer (like I am), might, however, be swayed by calorie counts. I never would have been a repeat offender at this place because I'm not a fan of the food but the calorie information certainly did keep me from ordering that shake!
I gotta admit, though, that right now I could use some thick and creamy and cold like a chocolate shake.