Hold the fries…and the burger

by Kellen

burger and fries

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All those things you already know but choose to ignore

There is little doubt that a hamburger, french fries and a soda have no business anywhere near our mouths. Ever. Yet many of us enjoy, if you can call it enjoyment, the speedy, salty and sweet rush of a greasy bag devoured behind the wheel of our car on the way to work or school. It’s convenient (your endless choice of burgers, tacos, chicken, pizza, sandwiches and more), it’s cheap (relatively speaking as the average fast food meal these days that includes all the fixins will run you nearly $7) and you can even stick to your diet and order a salad (which has more sodium and calories from fat than an order of fries).

I assume that a preface such as this one is unnecessary and that you, you yes you dear reader, are at the very least informed about the travesties that take place in the fast food industry. However it’s still more than likely that you haven’t kicked the habit as I know I for one still indulge occasionally in an order of fries.

So why is it that so many of us know that one greasy bag contains so much artery clogging mush that it makes our hearts hurt and yet we eat it anyway? There is no obvious answer but I’m sure that the most popular one is that “It tastes good”. Still at what cost to your health do you allow your taste buds to be entertained?

nugget

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The Almighty McNugget

Easily a favorite menu item among children and adults alike is the chicken nugget. A crispy finger food that can be dipped into a number of sweet or tangy sauces and comes in a little box of as few as four pieces or as many as twenty. The largest fast food chain claims that their chicken nuggets are made from all white meat chicken tempura battered and cooked golden brown. In actuality these little nuggets are only made up of about 50% chicken and that is chicken that has been mechanically separated. This means that it is processed so that bones and bits of cartilage can be smoothed out and turned into a white slime.

Flavors and other ingredients are then added to the white slim to give it shape and texture and as an article in Organicauthority.com points out one of those other ingredients is “…dimethylpolysiloxane, an anti-foaming agent made of silicone that is also used in Silly Putty and cosmetics.” Dimethylpolysiloxane is also used in breast implants but the dangers it has posed have started to push it out and yet it is still marketed towards children by means of the chicken nugget everyday.

This same article mentions the additive TBHQ “…which is a chemical preservative and a form of butane (AKA lighter fluid). One gram of TBHQ can cause “nausea, vomiting, ringing in the ears, delirium, a sense of suffocation, and collapse,” according to A Consumer’s Dictionary of Food Additives. Five grams of TBHQ can kill you.”

Where’s the beef?

For fear of repeating myself I’d like to refer you back to BEEF! It’s what’s for dinner? Part I and BEEF! It’s what’s for dinner? Part II for a detailed look into what beef consumption will get you.

Hazlo a tu manera

Avoir votre manière

有它自己的方式

Have it your way

Haben es auf deine Weise

Hanno a modo tuo

Fast Food Nation(s)

In the 10th chapter of Fast Food Nation entitled “global realization” Eric Schlosser reveals how a McDonald’s became the first building erected in East Germany after the fall of the Berlin Wall. This McDonald’s was built on an abandoned lot a block away from the steps of the town hall in Plauen.

Plauen is located in a part of Saxony known as the Vogtland and it was the birthplace of the Hitler Youth in 1923 and later became a Nazi headquarters. Along with Dresden, Plauen received a great deal of fire-bombing from the Allies and when Germany was divided the Soviets took control of the decimated city. East Germany under Soviet control was no walk in the park and when the wall was torn down a country once divided by hate filled ideology, death and war was unified again. An American corporation then decides that this is the most appropriate time to build a fast food chain, and right on the steps of a historical and healing site.

But nothing is sacred really because there is a McDonald’s built just one mile from the parking lot of the former Dachua concentration camp. The franchise has no consideration for the 32,000+  people murdered there instead they would rather capitalize on the numerous tourists that flock to the area.

Westward Thinking is not Forward Thinking

Americans are conditioned to believe that the quarter lb. or more of beef in the fast food burger is essential delicious protein. This just isn’t the case but this ideology has spread outside of the growing confines, and waist, of the United States. As they adopt our eating habits they will also accrue our health problems including but not limited to hypertension, obesity, diabetes and cancer.   

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