We Bite Back

Another argument...
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Author:  Spender [ Sat Jan 09, 2010 1:18 pm ]
Post subject:  Another argument...

...against posting calorie counts on restaurant menus:


I find myself so influenced when I can access calorie counts on anything; I find myself making decisions entirely on the basis of caloric content and trying to change foods to reduce even further the number of calories and fat grams. I don't want this information staring me in the face everywhere I go now.

Author:  Becky [ Sat Jan 09, 2010 1:39 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Another argument...

Spender wrote:
...against posting calorie counts on restaurant menus:


I find myself so influenced when I can access calorie counts on anything; I find myself making decisions entirely on the basis of caloric content and trying to change foods to reduce even further the number of calories and fat grams. I don't want this information staring me in the face everywhere I go now.

I completely agree with your arguement, Spender. When my dad took us all out to dinner last summer for my brother's birthday, they had the caloric content posted on the menu and so I ordered the items with the lowest numebr of calories. Afterwards I find myself bragging about how few calories I'd taken in. Not the kind of dining experience I want...

Author:  Recovery Warrior [ Sat Jan 09, 2010 7:05 pm ]
Post subject: 

anyone seen the commercials for KFC and their "low calorie" items? Or for that matter Taco Bell and it's new campain saying that you can still have fast food and lose weight?. It's EVERYWHERE NOW. That's why I like to order in. I dont want to play the calorie game anymore.

Author:  delenda [ Sat Jan 09, 2010 9:06 pm ]
Post subject: 

Hrmm... I think this is a tricky one.

The world is not made up of entirely people struggling with eating disorders. From my experience as a server, I learned that people are quite unaware of the nutritional value of many menu items, largely due to the fact that they are quite misleading! For example, Dairy Queen's Chicken Sandwich would seem like a way "healthier" choice than a 1/4lb Bacon Cheddar Burger, but the chicken sandwich actually has 210 more calories than the burger, and an additional 20g of fat. I don't think many people would know that.

Unfortunately, having the calories right in front of you can influence your choice at a restaurant, but I think it is a good thing for the general population. Ideally, it wouldn't be necessary because everyone would have a balanced lifestyle and eating out would be an occasional treat, but we all know that's not the way it is!

Author:  ScaryStory [ Sat Jan 16, 2010 10:07 am ]
Post subject: 

These calorie postings make me so nervous. They make me feel like I can't eat anything and when I do I feel such guilt. I rarely eat fast food to begin with even though I love it. I just don't feel good afterwards.

Author:  luminous [ Tue Jan 19, 2010 4:49 pm ]
Post subject: 

I think the Marion Nestle quote about accuracy was sort of interesting because, from what I heard her say on the radio the other day, she actually supports having calories on menus. I wonder whether they truncated her post.

My school has calories listed for most items in the (self-serve) cafeteria. They can be a little bit misleading if you just glance at them quickly because the portion sizes aren't consistent. I did a double-take when I saw that the calories for the cream-based soup were lower than the calories for the vegetable soup, and I realized that while the serving size for the veggie soup was something like 4-6 oz, the serving size listed for the creamy soup was 1 oz! If you're trying to make people who don't normally pay attention to calories aware of what they're eating, then why would you make the signs so unclear? (I'm not talking about the portion size being smaller than what people normally eat, which I'm never surprised by on the sides of packages.)

Also, as someone who does know a bit about what's in food, I find that I end up avoiding items I might otherwise have been ok with -- and then getting hungry later and going back to the cafeteria (or eating cereal if it's at night). I eat the same amount, I think (because I'm trying to!), but the signs mess with my head and make it harder!

Author:  epic [ Tue Jan 19, 2010 5:11 pm ]
Post subject: 

Fast food restaurants use inexpensive ingredients. They deep fry food to produce it quickly. The main way they strive to present a healthy image is by adding healthier options (say muffins or side salads) to their fattier fare. It isn't changing the conditions that created fast food. (Efficiency... cheap ingredients, speedy service... made as cheap and fast as possible to produce the highest profit for the restaurant franchise owners and head offices.) The needs of the people (nutrition-wise) are at odds with the profit margins of the restaurant owners and chain owners.

More expensive yet better-quality ingredients would improve health of the masses (What would be the cost of using real cane sugar rather than high fructose corn syrup, knowing that HFCS encourages obesity in many bodies that cannot optimally metabolize it??) more than posting calorie counts in these places.

Posting calorie counts is an effort to morally shame the public for consuming less than ideal foods... made with less than the best ingredients.

In a perfect world, the mass producing food processors would be required to use higher quality ingredients. It wouldn't be a matter of shaming the customer for eating the only stuff their wallet can afford (presumably, for some or many).

Does this make sense?

[start soapbox rant]
I still think all these publicly posted calorie counts are precursors to taxing caloric intake of the masses for their "carbon footprint" (taxing people for eating or doing anything that requires any energy whatsoever) as a part of the farce of fighting global warming (when in reality we're in a period of global cooling and may be entering another little ice age like the one in the 1500s)
[/end soapbox rant]

Author:  createchange [ Thu Jan 21, 2010 12:59 am ]
Post subject: 

A friend from a support group and I went to Panera a few months back before the semester ended for summer and we were most surprised to see the calories on the Panera menu. This kind of set us back, almost. A fun meal turned very ED.

And, on top of it, the calories were really high (I actually talked to my nutritionist about this) and included putting everything on the sandwich/menu (not sure if this is everywhere--something they were trying here with the menu....i.e., each sandwich include the calories for the mayo, cheese, meat, other dressings, breads, anything else on it) so it really wasn't indicative of what we were ordering (ex. the potato soup included calories for bacon bits on it--haha we have a friend that works there and she over heard our little rant).

Anyway....I am all for helping people make better choices, and I agree that people need to be better educated about it. I mean, if I asked anyone around me, they would say a lower calories item is the healthiest, even if it isn't.

I almost wish it could be optional, especially at restaurants where there is really just one menu--like a Panera. For example, have a paper menu or something on the side if you really want to know those things.

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