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Experts say McDonald's Restaurant at Olympics in London may increase obesity

Jenny Decker RN's picture
McDonald's restaurant

A new McDonald's restaurant is opening, said to be the world largest for the fast food chain, in London, just in time for the Olympic Games this summer from June 27th to August 12th. It will be a 2-story high building that is said to be cathedral like. The size half is that of a football field. It can seat 1500 customers. In addition, McDonald’s has been officially chosen to be a sponsor for the Olympic Games.

A group of doctors from the Academy of Royal Medical Colleges are calling on the British government to block advertising of the fast food chain McDonalds, Coca Cola, and Heineken beer (both of which were chosen sponsors as well) because they state that it will adversely affect the health of British people, and those of other nations as well. The London Olympic Committee has in turn stated that the sponsors were chosen as business deals. The Committee reminds the group of doctors that it takes money to run the Olympics and this is how the Olympics are paid for.

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Obesity has reached epidemic levels in the UK, affecting as many as one-fourth of the population, with estimates expected to go up even higher. According to experts, obesity and conditions that are affected by it, such as heart disease and diabetes, cost the UK system 4 billion pounds, or $6.5 billion. With the saturated fat (50 percent Daily value for saturated fat) and high cholesterol levels (25 percent Daily Value for cholesterol) found in Big Macs, this message from the Olympics is said to be one of people that are fat and unhealthy. This is in contradiction to the healthy and fit athlete that the Olympics should portray

McDonalds made a statement in reply to the request from the doctors. The fast food chain stated that they have been the official sponsor for the Olympics since 1976 and that they would provide the highest quality British food possible. It is possible to look directly at the nutritional values of a Big Mac or any other item on the McDonald’s menu. A Big Mac is 550 calories, with 260 of those calories are fat, a 45 percent daily value of fat. All of that is contained in one Big Mac, comprising most of the day’s needed calories for an average person.

The concern of the doctors is not just for those people who are already obese, but that the advertising can also affect people who are not really inclined to eat at a fast food chain like McDonald’s to go ahead and at the restaurant. Advertisement tends to increase a person’s chances of buying something. If it is fat, unhealthy food, then that is when obesity becomes a risk and possibly a reality. Remember the old adage of ‘You are what you eat’.

Image source of a McDonald's restaurant: Flickr. Used under Creative Commons License.