Monday, August 31, 2009

File This Under “What are They Thinking”

KFC, formerly known as Kentucky Fried Chicken, is testing a new concept sandwich, the Double Down. This fat infested, scale tipping, caloric packed sandwich contains only meat, bacon, cheese and the Colonel’s special sauce. Yes, you read correctly, no bun. The premise of this monstrosity is, “Why bother with the bun?” The Double Down replaces the traditional bun with two Original Recipe chicken fillets.

"It's such a meaty chicken sandwich, there's no room for a bun," Rick Maynard, a
KFC spokesman told Slashfood.

Yikes! What are they thinking? They must have determined that there was a market for this sandwich. Perhaps all of us Paleo/Zone or types, or maybe the Atkins-friendly types, who avoid the bun at all costs?? Now that is funny! I’m sure we will all be rushing out to purchase this fried concoction thinking, “WOW, a sandwich just for us!!!” Or perhaps it is just the convenience factor.

But seriously, this sandwich certainly is not healthy, although it is trying to give the appearance of being so. Why would people choose to put two fried chicken fillets, bacon, cheese and “special sauce” in their mouth? Do they really think that there is some nutritional value in choosing this sandwich? Food critic estimates are bringing the calorie count in at about 1200 calories, with KFC estimating the final count to be more around 600. The jury is still out, as nutritional information is not yet available.

But KFC is not the first to go overboard on a “what are they thinking” sandwich. Burger King has the Triple Whopper with Cheese, coming in at 1210 calories and 84g of fat. Their BK Quad Stacker, which you would think could be worse, actually comes in at 1010 calories and 70g of fat. I bet if you add the cheese, the BK Quad Stacker will top the Triple Whopper with Cheese!

Carl’s Jr. has two burgers, the Guacamole Bacon Six Dollar Burger and the Western bacon Six Dollar Burger, both topping 1000 calories each with 70 and 50 grams of fat respectively. Add on an order of Chili Cheese fries and you’re now looking at a 2000 calorie meal with over 100g of fat! If you think outside the sandwich box, Jack in the Box has milk shakes topping the 1000 calorie mark. Add that to your Carl’s Jr. burger and fries and you are in calorie and fat overload.

What are they all thinking? Obviously there is a market for convenience. But is the convenience of fast food worth the calories and fat, and the potential health risks? Are the fast food restaurants going overboard with unhealthy choices? How can consumers, or we as fitness fiends, make better choices while maintaining convenience? Is it possible?

What do you do when faced with the need for convenient food? Do you order directly off a fast food menu or do you modify your order? Do you avoid fast food at all costs or have you found good choices that provide healthy alternatives to the traditional fast food fare?

Post your thoughts to comments.

1 comment:

Lish said...

I have eaten fast food less times in my life than I have fingers on one hand. It is disgusting and I even knew that when I was a little kid. Scott and I always stock up at the grocery store on trips and just bring along a big cooler. In town, same thing, going to the grocery store is easier, faster and less expensive than going to a fast food joint. Check out this CrossFit archive on which is faster: grocery store vs. fast food.

About the chicken as the "bun"; good idea for us paleo peeps, but fried??? I could make that same sandwich at home for under 400 calories (2-3oz grilled chicken breasts, 2 slices turkey bacon, 1 tablespoon avocado, salt, pepper and a large side of fruit and/or veggies) Mmmmm, maybe I'll make that for dinner tonight?

I love cooking and I love eating a variety of food! You can take any recipe and make it paleo! And, best thing, you feel good eating it and afterwards.