Incredible. MacDonalds has added apples to their happy meals after pressure from consumers and regulators. But is this really a solution to childhood obesity? I have a magic word that comes in handy when my daughter asks for crap food. It's NO! It's not to say she doesn't get treats but it's all about limits right?
Childhood obesity is a complex issue. I agree. But have many parents lost the ability to say NO both to themselves and their kids when it comes to eating fast food regularly? As Michael Pollan says, "Eat food. Mostly vegetables. Not too much".
McDonald’s Corp. is adding apples to all its Happy Meals and launching a nutrition-focused mobile phone app as part of a broader health push.
The changes that underscore how the restaurant industry is reacting to the demands of customers and regulators who blame it for health ills ranging from childhood obesity to diabetes.
- McDonald’s pledged to reduce sugars, saturated fats and calories through “varied portion sizes, reformulations and innovations” by 2020. It didn’t give details. By 2015, it will reduce sodium by 15 per cent.
– McDonald’s will introduce a new mobile app focused just on nutrition information.
– McDonald’s U.S. president Jan Fields and other executives will go on a “listening tour” in August to hear suggestions from parents and nutrition experts. The chain will also launch a new online forum for parents.
It is true that food manufacturers develop the perfect blend of fat, sugar and salt to make food extremely pleasurable. It is also true that MacDonalds markets the shit out of their products to make them look like fun to kids. Hello? Ronald MacDonald. I just feel that our society could become way too paternalistic where we stop taking full responsibility for our choices and start blaming them on giant corporations. Is the corporation there each time we take our hand and put it to our mouths? There are so many systemic issues at play that contribute to the obesity crisis, way too many to try to talk about now. But change starts with the individual. I can't impact them in a big way but I can take responsibility for myself and my daughter.
In fact, many of my friends have poisoned their kids against MacDonalds by nick naming it "McDirtys". When their kids drive by a MacDonalds, they say "ooh McDirtys".
I have a hard time even thinking about putting their food in my mouth, not because I'd never indulge in fast food. Very occasionally, you can catch me eating fast food. I'm human, not a fitness robot. In desperation one morning last year I ordered an egg McMuffin, yes I did, and I took a bite and it was cold and moldy. I just can't go back. There's no freakin love or care in their food and people who work there are miserable most of the time, living below the poverty line.
When I told my daughter that MacDonalds was adding apples to their happy meals because many people feel that companies like MacDonalds are making children obese, she said, "Mommy. It's not MacDonalds. It's the parents."