A Warning on 4,800-Calorie Burger? Lighten Up!
A Michigan minor-league baseball team's scheme to sell a big honkin' burger totaling 4,800 calories as a concession-stand promotion has drawn the ire of a Washington, D.C.-based advocacy group that wants the burger to come with a warning about its deleterious health effects.
The West Michigan Whitecaps' new 4-pound burger features 5 beef patties, 5 slices of cheese, nearly a cup of chili plus salsa and corn chips, all bundled into an 8-inch bun. The concoction sells for $20. Anyone who eats one by him- or herself earns a t-shirt to mark the achievement.
The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, which promotes vegetarianism as the most healthful diet, calls the burger a "dietary disaster" and has asked the ball team to warn customers that "Eating meat is associated with increased risk of heart disease, cancer, and death."
To which I say: Give me a break.
I've got to think that PCRM has got bigger fish to fry. Nor do I believe anyone who's likely to lust after that insanely huge hamburger (or the t-shirt) will be deterred by a warning that it might be bad for their heart, cause cancer or make them fat.
Of course nobody's suggesting that monster burgers become a dietary mainstay. But this is clearly a prank, a silly attention-getting device. To suggest that it's likely to encourage widespread overindulgence in hypercaloric ground beef sandwiches is, I think, disingenuous. Seems health advocacy groups, like minor-league ball teams, sometimes need a bit of publicity.
I don't want to eat a big burger myself. But I defend other people's right to cram one in their face if they so choose.
Just don't throw up on my feet.
What do you think? Vote here and comment freely, below.
Jennifer LaRue Huget
April 3, 2009; 7:00 AM ET
Categories: General Health , Nutrition and Fitness , Obesity
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