This is 600 Calories of Ridiculousness

Posted on July 28, 2012


SIGH….This ridiculousness was in the runners’ packets at the recent Chicago Rock ‘n Roll 1/2 Marathon. THE RUNNERS PACKETS.

You guys are totally smarter than this, yeah?

  • Calorie TYPE matters, not just calorie COUNT. Danielle made an excellent comment on Stephen Guyenet’s blog on this matter, “I still don’t understand how any academic in nutrition can truly believe that a calorie is a calorie. Yes, one unit of energy is still one unit of energy, but once it enters the mouth we have absorption and fermentation in the gut, liver metabolism to deal with, and then once in the bloodstream, who says that calorie will be destined to be used for energy anyway. There are hormonal responses to different macronutrients playing a role and many further downstream effects on metabolism. Saying a calorie is a calorie is being completely blind to how complex human metabolism really is.
  • McD’s does not support organic farming…buy your own veggies (especially choosing organic for the Dirty Dozen veggies, of which salad greens, brocolli, and peppers are included). The veggies are definitely NOT organic, meaning you have to digest and absorb the pesticides on the veggies. Think that’s no big deal? Check this out.
  • The total amount of protein in any of those meals is lacking big-time! Even a non-athlete should be making protein a priority – protein keeps you feeling satisfied and full, it helps regulate blood sugar balance, provides amino acids (the building blocks of life!), and assists in diminishing cravings. 30+ grams of protein is a decent start to your day (with some experts recommending 30-50grams at breakfast!) Oatmeal & milk has 13g protein, and a complete meal of foods that are pro-inflammatory to the body. ‘Mainstream’ dairy is missing all the nutritional value that raw dairy has & grains (even oats) have compounds in them that unlock the tight junctures of your gut, allowing food particles to seep through…as if someone left the barn door open. This happens EVEN if you are not gluten-intolerant.

I am totally not against a good burger & fries from time to time. In fact, one of my favorite restaurants has gourmet burgers and the best sweet potato fries around! Just go bunless and cheese-less (except if you want a fancy treat like I did today – brie on a burger is pretty lovely) and you’ll be doing far better than you would at many other fast/fast-casual/sit-down restaurants.

And for those wondering – sweet potato fries make a delicious post-workout carb choice. Sure, a whole sweet potato would be a cleaner carb choice, just because of the likely high omega-6 oils the fries are fried in, but if you’re keeping your n-6 intake low and want to treat yourself to some fries, I don’t think its the end of the world. But if you’re going for fat-loss, you may want to avoid the post-workout carb all-together.

**A reminder to gluten-free folks – if they toast buns on the same griddle that cooks your meat, it ain’t gluten free. And if they fry breaded anything in the same oil as the fries, those fries are at risk of contamination also. Just because a restaurant is jumping on the gluten-free bandwagon, does not mean they actually can give you a gluten-free meal. Do your homework before you get glutened!! Not that I even need to mention it, but no, there are no separate fryers at McD’s for the fries, they go in with the nuggets.

Posted in: nutrition