?`s and ANNEswers

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A Caloric Education

This morning I was running (actually driving) errands, and I was hungry.  I thought I could make it home to have something nutritious, but my stomach argued otherwise.  So, since McDonald’s was on the way, I stopped in to see if there was something nutritious to eat there. 

Let me tell you:  there really isn’t. 

I don’t frequent McDonald’s often, unless Earl and I are on a road trip and need a potty break.  Then I stop in, buy a cup of coffee, and use the facilities.  I don’t think it’s right to pee for free. 

But today wasn’t about facilities; it was about hunger. Since I’m not a regular, I spent several minutes studying the menu.  Where I live, McDonald’s has taken to posting the calorie count after each entrée, which made my study more time-consuming. But revealing. 

I learned a quarter pounder was 660 calories.  This is without French fries, and probably without condiments.  That’s more than a third of the calories I consume in a day. Add French fries and we’re out of the ballpark. 

So I continued to study the menu board and couldn’t find much in the three hundred calorie range. But finally I found a bacon-ranch salad at 260 calories.  It came with a grilled chicken breast – well, with a pressed meat-patty-replica of a chicken breast – on top of a bed of lettuce with carrots, tomatoes, bacon, and cheese.  It also came with your choice of dressing.  I chose ranch on the side. 

Took the salad and dressing and a glass of water to a solitary booth to relax. Then I opened the plastic clamshell that held the salad, and cut a bite of the chicken while studying the labels on the dressing.  Aaarrrggghhh!!! The dressing package had 180 calories.  How disheartening, because, while the salad seemed reasonable, the dressing adds too many calories for a luncheon snack. Unless you don’t care. 

I care.  I live in Michigan, one of the top ten obese states in the nation.  I don’t want to be included. So what I learned is that McDonald’s is a great place to purchase coffee when you’re searching for a bathroom, but it’s not so great if you’re concerned about your caloric intake and your weight.

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