Let out your belt a notch to prepare for National Junk Food Day! Yes-- you read it correctly: NATIONAL JUNK FOOD DAY! What is the world coming to? As if every day is not enough for Americans, we need an entire day dedicated specifically to junk food?
So, on July 21st, go on out and throw caution to the wind! Begin the day by enjoying a Snickers bar for breakfast; after all, a Snickers bar contains as many carbs as a bagel, and if carbs are all that count, then why not opt for a candy bar over a bagel? Next, you will need something to drink with that Snickers bar, so head on over to Starbucks and order up a venti Caramel Ribbon Crunch Frappuccino which contains only 600 calories, 20 grams of fat, and another 101 grams of carbohydrates. Calories don't even matter according to some nutrition "gurus" these days, so there should be no guilt, right? Someday you may even be able to order it in the new size they offer: Trenta (31 ounces-- shouldn't it only be 30 ounces? "Trenta" is Italian for the number 30, not 31! Consistent with the meaning of the Italian number “venti,” their size for hot drinks is 20 ounces, but the cold drink version is 24 ounces!) What's up Starbucks?
If you don't go into a diabetic coma when your blood sugar crashes after about 2 hours, then you will be good to go another round. Why not opt for some protein? After all, doesn't protein help to stabilize blood sugar? After spending $5-6 on breakfast, you may want to tighten your proverbial belt (no pun intended ;) and check out Wendy's Value Menu. You can get some protein for cheap there! How about a Double Stack? Only 460 calories-- that's a relief after breakfast! But with the bun comes more carbs-- only 27 grams this time, but it is offset by 29 grams of protein in those hamburger patties. Keep in mind that a low-carb diet contains between 20-50 grams of carbohydrates per day, and a limited-carb diet contains up to 150 grams per day. Even with lower carbs at lunch, 27 grams at one meal is a bit on the high side, so your blood sugar is likely to crash again after lunch. And since it is so cheap at Wendy's, let's throw in a Value fry and a soft drink as well! Most people order the full-size meal after all, and we are ordering the smaller sizes, right?
Be armed and ready with a caffeinated energy drink such as Rock Star or Monster to give you that afternoon "pick-me-up." The subsequent blood sugar crash will create another roller coaster ride to dinnertime where you will be faced with more food choices to make in order to round out this fun-filled national day of indulgence. Taking the whole family out for dinner after today's other "food" purchases might stress the pocketbook too much, and you are likely ready for a nap and some Rolaids as well, so let's eat at home after we pick up something quick from the grocery store. How about a rotisserie chicken dinner with macaroni & cheese (the kids love it), along with biscuits, mashed potatoes & gravy... and why not throw in a green vegetable too? How about some coleslaw? This is a very American meal, and the rotisserie chicken is more healthy than fried too! Oh, and don't forget dessert-- ice cream and bakery brownies!
TOTAL NUTRITIONAL ANALYSIS:
|National Junk Food Day
|Calories||3,334||1,800-2,200 recommended for HEALTHY WEIGHT, moderately active women (walk 1.5-3.0 miles daily); even less if you are trying to lose weight|
|Fat||147 g||20-150 g, depending on your needs|
|Carbs||451 g||451 g|
|Sugars||256 g||20 g or less|
|Protein||78 g||46-75 g|
Sadly, while you personally may not eat this way, my fictitious example of a National Junk Food Day diet is very representative of the Standard American Diet (SAD)! Go to Starbucks after school and watch how many young people walk out with a venti Frappuccino on a DAILY basis (sometimes multiple times a day!) Take a gander at filled shopping carts while you are waiting in line to be checked out. There is scarcely a fresh fruit or vegetable in most carts-- only boxes and packages instead. Tragically, millions of people across America eat this way EVERY DAY, and they can't understand why they are Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead! But I don't think the answer is to live on juice either! I believe the answer to be a CONSISTENT, BALANCED diet because, "It's not what you do some of the time, it's WHAT YOU DO MOST OF THE TIME that counts."
Personally, I hardly think junk food needs its own day. It reminds me of when as a little girl I asked my mother if there was a Mother's Day and a Father's Day why there wasn't a children's day. She wisely replied, "Every day is children's day!" A Junk Food lifestyle among Americans has become the norm and has undermined the health of this country! Hopefully this little vignette has provided you with some food for thought about changes you may need to make in your daily diet in order to reach your goals related to TOTAL HEALTH and being FIT, TRIM & BALANCED!
While the junk food diet in this blog is obviously counterproductive to health, there are a ton of voices out there encouraging “healthy” diets that eliminate or focus on a specific food group in an unbalanced way. While these diets may not be as unhealthy as a junk food diet, they are still incomplete and fall short of the created design for our bodies, leaving gaps in our nutrition for total health. I have alluded to several health myths in this blog such as hyper-focus on carbohydrates and the idea that calories don’t matter. These topics were covered in RevYour “Engine” & Make It Purr. Stay tuned for my next blog when I will discuss the case against The Paleo Diet.
Do you celebrate junk food more than you should? Did you find this blog to be helpful? Fun? I would love to hear your comments!
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“The Diabetes Epidemic: Our Deadly Fascination with Junk Food” from “The Untold Truth Series.”
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