THE INC. LIFE

McDonald’s Was Just Hit With a Shocking Revelation That May Leave Everyone Thinking Twice About Eating There

Well, this is a surprise.

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BY Chris Matyszczyk - 12 Mar 2018

McDonald's Was Just Hit With a Shocking Revelation That May Leave Everyone Thinking Twice About Eating There

PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images

Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek.

 

Isn't everyone on a health kick these days?

And doesn't that include restaurants and food manufacturers?

They seem to go out of their way to underline the healthier aspects of their offerings.

This includes McDonald's, which has recently turned to fresh beef and to making its Happy Meals less happy with the salt and sugar.

Yet a damning new report suggests that a trip to McDonald's hasn't really become healthier over time.

The Sun says it examined a leaflet from 1989 and compared it to the amounts of sugar, salt and calories in McDonald's food today.

What it found was that sugar levels were 221 percent higher in, for example, Big Macs than they were 30 years ago.

Regular French Fries, says the paper, now contain 43 percent more calories, 17 percent more fat and 24 percent more salt.

And a Quarter Pounder with Cheese enjoys a giddy 285 percent more sugar.

I contacted McDonald's for its reaction.

"For more than 30 years we have provided clear nutritional information, at point of sale and on tray liners, to help our customers make informed choices, and our menu has evolved over the years so it provides more choice than ever from salads, to wraps, to coffee, to fruit bags.," a spokeswoman told me.

I wonder how many people know, say, the calorific content of, say, their Big Macs.

McDonald's, though, told me that it had "worked hard to improve our recipes and to reduce fat, salt and sugar across our entire menu, without compromising on the taste that our customers love."

90 percent of its offerings said its spokeswoman, had fewer than 500 calories.

I fear some people may translate that as: "Hey, you like sugar, salt and fat, so we're just giving you what you want. And we don't hear you complaining."

Moreover, a company spokesman told the Daily Mail that the comparison wasn't entirely fair as its menu has "evolved in many ways including portion size, breadth and nutritional content."

Your task for today: define evolution.

The spokesman, however, was insistent: "Since 2005, we've reduced the salt content across our entire menu by nearly 35 per cent, the trans-fat content of our cooking oil by 94 per cent and saturated fat by 83 per cent, and almost 90 per cent of our standard food and drink items now contain fewer than 500 calories."

Obesity rates in the United States aren't exactly shrinking. Data suggests that almost 40 percent of adults in some states are obese.

For its part, the U.K. is said to be the most overweight nation in Western Europe.

Yet it's a touch too facile to just blame McDonald's and the like for everything.

Many people make specific choices about what they're going to eat.

How many walk into McDonald's believing that the food is going to be good for them?