Friday, April 7, 2006

Something I noticed...

McDonalds has started putting the nutrition information on the wrappers of the food, as well as a little icon of Ronald McDonald jumping or skipping (basically, being active) and text that encourages people to get off of their butts and move.

Now, let me give you my fast food background. When I dated Zak, I ate at McDonalds almost everyday. If it wasn't McDonalds, then it was Jack in the Box, Taco Bell, Wendy's, whatever. I'm not saying that in that 2 ½ years all that I ate was fast food with him, but it was about 90% of the food we ate in each other's company.

Having said that, when I was dating him, I was grossly underweight at 90-95 lbs. (less when I was stressed out), so this whole "fast food makes you fat" thing wasn't working for me. I was working a desk job 30-40 hours a week, and going to college full time. The year and a half while I was in high school dating Zak, I was working 15-20 hours a week, and was super-involved in marching band, choir, and whatever else I could fit. Although I should have ballooned the instant I graduated high school, or in the year afterwards when I maintained la vida teenager, I just didn't.

Maybe it was my teen metabolism, maybe it was because being super-active (physically), especially while I was in marching band. As soon as I stopped dating Zak, I swore off fast food for about a year. Now I eat at fast food places 4-12 times a year, which won't make me horribly sick or fat. Here's where I find the lawsuits/ change in packaging painfully stupid.

Everyone knows that fast food is bad for you. Just like smoking. Maybe there should be a Surgeon General's warning on everything in a fast food restaurant, like on cigarettes. I'll even give two options, like the Surgeon General does for cigarettes:


SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Eating fast food has been proven to cause obesity, heightened blood pressure, and elevated cholesterol levels.


SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Fast food contains high sodium levels, fat, and processed sugars.

Now, I understand that personal responsibility is not encouraged in mainstream American culture. This is why there are legal defenses for EVERYTHING. I'm not an extremist; I think in some cases these defenses are necessary, but Twinkie defenses are an absurd abuse of the legal system. Everyone gets a little crazy when their blood sugar plummets low enough. Some of us are even dramatic enough to shake and faint after yelling at people. (All the Hypoglycemics in the room please stand up, please stand up. [Okay, I know I'm not cool enough to quote Eminem on my blog, but it's better than me trying to pull off "Hypoglycemics, holla!"] )

What is even less excusable is someone deciding to breed and "not having time" to prepare real, nutritious food for their whelp and feeding them fast food more than once a month. Why have children if you don't take care to raise them properly? This is where the veritable list of excuses arises: high costs of living, etc. There is always time and there are things that you certainly can live without if you choose to have a child.

I'm not saying that poor people shouldn't have children, I'm just saying that proper planning (both family planning and meal planning) can prevent childhood obesity. And teen pregnancy. And Bird Flu.

Ok, maybe not Bird Flu. But who knows; maybe it can. * Raises eyebrow suspiciously *

I eat fast food, too. Just less than most people. It's the fries, man! Salty, potato-ey, goodness!

On a less socio-political note, we're seeing Gypsy tonight. Strippers + Musical theater = AWESOME!!! It's high-culture meets low-culture!

Thought of the day:

My labelmaker looks like an original Star Trek phaser. How cool is that? So, I set it to KILL! and then I make labels. Qapla!

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