Eat This, Not That? Why eat any of it?
There's been a lot of talk about Oprah's free chicken coupon mess. I guess she offered a free pass to KFC for adding grilled chicken to its fast food menu, and there wasn't enough chicken.
That's funny. But how about 'grilling' (see I can write for the AP) Oprah over the food instead of the coupon. The 'food' is a KFC's healthier grilled chicken - but it includes two carb-and-salt heavy side dishes and a carbon water full of High Fructose Corn Syrup. Yes, the chicken is healthier since the skin is off - and grilled is better than fried.
But don't the chickens come from factory farms? She even went to court to defend herself for defaming the raising and treatment of cattle [Texas Cattlemen v. Lyman and Oprah] Now she's okay with it? Maybe she was attacked by a chicken at an early age, or on the set of the Color Purple? Maybe she just hasn't read the Pew Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production's report on environmental impact and the lousy working condition in poultry processing factories? Well, let's just dismiss that with a large check.
The bigger issue is why would someone who has such a famous relationship with her fat cells sending folks to KFC?
Oh sure, it's 'healthy' but realistically - it's only the illusion of healthy. Dr. Marion Nestle, author of Food Politics says,
Dr. Nestle: A having a healthy option creates a "health aura"--the illusion that anything eaten in the vicinity of something healthful is automatically healthful too.Bottom line - if the fast food industry really wanted to help their customer's health it would
Researchers demonstrate the power of the health aura to give people license to make less nutritious choices. Brian Wansink and his colleagues at Cornell have shown that putting a low-fat label on a food product is all you have to do to get people to eat more calories from it than they would otherwise. And researchers have just shown that customers will order more French fries from a menu that lists a salad than they will from one that doesn't.
Those are examples of the health aura in action. If grilled chicken works for KFC as salads did for McDonald's, it will bring in new customers, at least temporarily. But health aura research predicts that having a healthier option at KFC will encourage most customers to order more of everything else."
(1) make it easier and cheaper for customers to order smaller portions,
(2) make healthy kids meals the default,
(3) add vegetables (other than potatoes) to all of their meals,
(4) provide fruit desserts, [hopefully without syrups and frosting]
(5) reduce the sugars and salt in everything they make.
Really. Who am I kidding? They'll just introduce a grilled chicken - and call it a day.