There was an article in this morning's paper about fast food restaurants; it seems they've decided that their market is people who want a lot of calories for a small price. They're making their burgers even bigger, and the bigger they are, the faster they sell.
Included in the article were calorie counts for some brand new fast food offerings: the Stuffed Steakhouse sandwich from Burger King has 600 calories, the All-American Jack sandwich from Jack in the Box has 840 calories, and the Footlong Cheeseburger from Carl's Jr. tops that with 850 calories. By the way, those numbers are just for the burgers.
Add a large order of fries (590 calories) and a 32 ounce Coke (388 calories) to your Burger King sandwich for a grand total of 1,578 calories; 1,966 calories if you go back for your free refill. At Jack in the Box, a large order of fries has 580 calories; add that and a 32 oz. Coke (with a free refill) for an All-American meal that contains 2,196 calories. Add a large fries (470 calories) and a 32 oz. Coke (with free refill) to your Footlong Cheeseburger for a grand total of 2,096 calories. And a Big Mac meal? 704 calories for the sandwich (that 570 number they love to share is for the Big Mac without cheese!); add fries (500 calories) and a 32 oz Coke (don't forget the free refill!) for a grand total of 1,980 calories.
That's a big lunch.
But, hey - we all know that fast food isn't exactly good for us, right? Well, how about these numbers for a couple of popular sit-down restaurants: choose a Fire Pit Bacon Burger from Applebees, and you've just consumed 1,070 calories. Add french fries (400 calories) and Coke with unlimited refills . . . . and, in no time, you're over 2,000 calories. At Chili's, the Barbeque Ranch Burger has 1,110 calories and the fries have 520 calories. With our favorite soft drink (unlimited refills!) the meal once again weighs in at over 2,000 calories. And that's without dessert.
Beth Mansfield (spokeswoman for the company who owns Carl's Jr.) said, "If we wanted to listen to the food police and sell nuts [n.b. 160 calories] and berries [n.b. 80 calories] and tofu burgers [n.b. 80 calories], we wouldn't make any money, and we'd be out of business." (Total calories from a meal of nuts, berries and a tofu burger: 320. Add a glass of water for free.)
Just to put that into perspective, the average recommended daily calorie intake (yours will vary based on your age, height, weight and activity level) is 1,940 calories for women, and 2,550 for men.
One meal. That's all it takes.