- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 5, 2002

Most people interested in losing weight or being heart-healthy know enough to steer clear of fast-food. An order of fries, sugar-laden soda and a double cheeseburger is not the fast path to either fitness or low cholesterol. But McDonald's under pressure from self-styled public-interest groups and even the FDA has announced it will do its best to allow Americans to have their cake and eat it, too. Sort of. The world's largest purveyor of fast-food announced Tuesday that it would soon be frying up its food in a more health-conscious vat of grease. Years ago, the company switched from good old beef lard to vegetable oil but even that concession was not good enough for groups such as the Naderite Center for Science in the Public Interest which won't be placated until the Big Mac is replaced by McBroccoli.

It's very nice that McDonald's is seeking to keep hospitals free of fresh customers, but the question has to be asked: Can fast-food ever be made healthy and waistline friendly without becoming health food somewhere along the way? And if what people really want is healthy, non-fattening food, wouldn't it be easier just to go someplace else? Americans' problem with obesity and poor health is due to excess consumption of fast-food and lack of exercise more so than the occasional indulgence. But instead of controlling our appetites, we'd rather just find someone to blame. Already, a 272-pound man has attempted to sue McDonald's for allegedly causing his obesity.

It's not likely that the new "lower fat" frying technique will help much if we keep shoveling those super-sized fries down our gullets.


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