Monday, June 22, 2009

Man Vs. Fast Food..Monday is McDonald's

Our first stop this week of Man vs. Fast Food was at McDonald's where I made selections from the sandwich menu. I selected two sandwiches that seemed to be the best choices if you were "stuck" ordering fast food for lunch or dinner. I did check with the Fast Food Peson (FFP) about what they would consider good nutritional items to order and I also did do some prior research on their website, which by the way props to them for listing everything under the sun nutritionally about each item, to see just what the possibilities might be. Given the needs of runners, cyclists, and walkers, I looked at several areas of nutrition to choose what I ordered today.

The criteria for selection is taking a look at the following things when deciding what to order:
Highest protein, low calories, high calories, high sodium, low sodium, high carbs, low carbs, low total fat, and high total fat.

The items selected today were the good old hamburger and the Honey Mustard Snack Wrap. The hamburger lead in several categories. It was low in fat, lowest calories, and lowest sodium. The Honey Mustard Snack wrap measured up evenly with the hamburger until it got to the sodium where the wrap had about twice as much. Ah, sodium. That's where some of the items on the menu really skyrocket. They might look low in calories and low in fat, but behind the scenes lurks the sodium monster. Please be careful in this area.

Other items on the menu that brought out some interesting facts that you should know about are the Double Quarter Pounder with cheese that had the highest protein but the highest total fat. The Angus Bacon Cheese had the highest calories, highest sodium, and the highest carbs. Whoa! So the Angus Bacon Cheese sandwich wins the Sodium King Award for the day.

In the salad category, there were a few surprises too. The side salad was a winner as something that you could have with the hamburger and do pretty well. The side salad had the lowest fat, calories, sodium, and carbs. Using the low fat dressing of course. The Premium Bacon Ranch Salad had the highest protein but also the highest sodium. The Premium Bacon Ranch Salad with crispy chicken had the highest total fat and carbs.

Some interesting facts:
*All of the wraps seemed good until you got to the sodium. They were right there with the hamburger until you looked at the sodium.
*You could order 2 hamburgers and there would be less calories than if you ordered 1 Premium Southwest with Crispy Chicken Salad with dressing.
*You could also order 7 Side Salads with low fat dressing which would equal 1 of many of the sandwiches.

Conclusion: We have to acknowledge that McDonald's has made an effort to disclose the nutritional information about their products. However, as consumers we need to be very aware of the high sodium content and high calories in most of their selections. So when at McDonald's, choose a hamburger or two over the highly touted wraps and loaded salads to keep the sodium, calories and fat to a minimum.

Forward we go! May your roads and trails be happy and safe!

Tuesday:Man vs. Fast Food....Burger King


TammyRunsWV said...

Nice post! I love those grilled chicken wraps. Where do you think the sodium comes from? The cheese? The honey mustard? You could nix those two items, then maybe it would be more sodium-friendly.

Joel said...

hey Mick! this is a great idea! I enjoyed your first effort and look forward to more. The Hamburger! who would have guessed.