How many of you of out there care to double down on a bet that the new Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) sandwich will be back after the month long trial in Canada? For those of us unaware, KFC has started test marketing its American phenomenon the “Double Down” sandwich in Canada this week. With 540 Calories, 30 grams of fat and 1740 mg of sodium, the Double Down seems to be doubling up the anger of nutritionists and doctors everywhereâ€¦and for good reason.
While the North American health food market steadily rises, the fast food chains are doing what they’ve always done best, putting money ahead of people’s health and in the US it’s working brilliantly. Since the Double Down’s debut last year in the United States other fast food chains are following suit by trying to dream up the most ridiculously unhealthy meals to compete with KFC. Canadian nutritionists are worried that if the Double Down succeeds here, the same trend will follow.
Let’s face it though; the Double Down is getting a lot of bad press more because of its unconventional appearance (two slabs of seasoned fried chicken sandwiching bacon, cheese and secret sauce) than its un-healthiness. While it is still unhealthy, the sodium especially, there have been far worse meals on the market longer, some are even disguised as healthy.
The Quizno’s Large Tuna Melt (with dressing) has been around for three or four years and on the surface seems healthy. People don’t realize there is over 2000 calories, 175 grams of fat and 2190mg of sodium in this sandwich. Quadruple the number of calories and more than five times the fat of a Double Downâ€¦ Yummy!
Wendy’s Baconator was also around before the KFC dish by a year or two. It has more calories and fat than the Double Down. In fact, a McDonald’s Big Mac has the same amount of calories and just one less gram of fat and it’s been around long before I was born. Clearly, the Double Down could be worse, but it has started a nasty revolution.
Consumer specialist Trevor Norris said it’s time the government stopped leaving it up to the consumer entirely, “We should be asking our government to protect us from corporations who are creating a major burden, Corporations should not be free to pass the burden of future health care expenses to taxpayers if a grossly unhealthy fast food product is wildly popular.”
I first and foremost believe in the freedom of choice. Besides, what constitutes an unhealthy meal? How do you ban the Double Down without banning the Big Mac and Baconator or do you ban fast food all together? I don’t like the government telling me I can’t smoke in a bar anymore, a place we go to poison ourselves anyway and I don’t want them to tell me I can’t have a hamburger at a restaurant. Keeping our waistline fit is a personal responsibility, not our governments.
I still agree with Mr. Norris in part however, maybe it’s time for KFC, Wendy’s and the like, to start infusing our health care system with some of their easy earned profits. Corporations should be responsible too after all. That way, when our arteries are clogged from Big Macs, Double Downs, Triple Whoppers, Baconator Triples and Grilled Cheese Burger Melts the money we spend to buy them will help pay for our hospital bill.