Bad for You, but Oh so Good (#5)



Have you heard about the new government regulations requiring some restaurants and other venues to start listing calorie counts, fat content, and the amount of sodium in every single menu item? This includes sodas and alcoholic beverages.

I have a few questions. How much will all this cost? Who do you think is going to pay for the huge expense of all these new government regulations? Do you think it will make a difference in obesity rates? I don’t know about you, but I already know what’s good and what’s bad for me; I don’t need a reminder. When I pull into the Burger King Drive through, I already know from experience, that delicious double whopper with cheese, crispy fries, and an ice-cold coke are pushing me one step closer to emergency bypass surgery. If I see a sign showing calories, fat, and sodium content, I doubt I’ll say,

“What the heck? Wow, I didn’t realize the life-threatening consequences of my ingesting these extremely unhealthy foods. Could I change my order to the grilled chicken salad, but without the chicken and dressing?” No, I’m going to do what I always do. I’m going to say,

“Could you please super-size that order.”

Do you know that restaurants with less than twenty locations, won’t have to abide by the regulations? Now, when we want to indulge in our favorite comfort foods we can still visit Mom’s Diner, Bobo’s Barbeque Pit, and Betty’s Delicious Desserts….. And not feel guilty. The new labels will also be required in convenience stores, movie theaters, vending machines, and amusement parks. Amusement parks? Does that mean, right after that two hundred foot vertical drop, and series of death defying loops on the roller coaster, I can hurl on the guy in the seat behind me, then say,

“Mmmmm….. I just relieved my stomach of 1845 calories, 82 grams of fat, and 1432 milligrams of salt. I guess I can hit the food stand again.”

I’m the first to admit that Americans need to eat healthier. I just don’t think people care about labels. We go out to restaurants to enjoy ourselves, not worry about calories. I gnaw on carrots, and fight my wife for the last of the arugula lettuce during the week. I don’t need to be reminded on a Saturday night that my medium rare sirloin steak, baked potato with butter and sour cream,  side of glazed carrots, and tiny piece of cherry cheese cake, provides my total dietary needs for three days!

I’m not exactly sure what some of the labels mean. I think I understand the number of calories, though I think the numbers are a little high. If a McDonald’s Big Mac has 576 calories, my Aunt Stella’s Halushki with cabbage, butter and lard must have at least………. 8,742 calories per serving!

What is it with the grams of fat and milligrams of sodium? Is that the metric system? When it says 43 grams of fat is that a couple pounds or something? What about those milligrams of salt. I’ve seen them pour it on the french fries at fast food places. I estimate 1124 milligrams has to be somewhere between a cup and a bushel.

The good news is I just bought a pizza, and it says it has only 276 calories per slice. Let me get out my calculator and multiply it by the eight slices in front of me. I know what you’re thinking, but I’m hungry. Okay, here we go. 2-7-6 times 8, plus the half gallon of coke. Done…… Ahhhhhh……. Quick, someone hand me an aspirin, and make that a diet coke.


About Patrick Dykie

I'm a simple, middle class family man, living a quiet life in eastern Pennsylvania. I love to write and make people laugh. During the day, I'm a fire protection consultant, and at night I'm working hard to be a writer. I've faced some things over the past few years that have slowed me down in my dreams, but I have always been an optimist. Over the past few years, I've written a number of books, but none have been published. That's about to change. I will be self-publishing "Simple observations" in the next few months. Thank you for coming to my site. I hope you enjoy the visit.
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One Response to Bad for You, but Oh so Good (#5)

  1. I’ve done a lot of research on this issue of nutrition and health. I’m pretty sure you’re right that giving people the facts about what they eat won’t change their eating behavior. If it did, we wouldn’t be getting fatter as a nation. I think the real problem with all the fast food (thus the requirement for the big chains to label, whether it works or not) is because the food is fast but not real. It’s so full of preservatives that your body doesn’t know what to do with most of it. Eating a burger, fries and piece of pie at a diner where everything is home-cooked is SO much better for you than eating the same meal at a place where everything comes in frozen and has a shelf life longer than a sea turtle. 😉

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