“Everything in moderation,” is an excellent age-old adage that can permit us to have a little of what we fancy once in a while. However, when a bastion of fast food claims to be a dieting beacon, moderation has gone out of the window! McDonald’s are having a bit of a lull recently; their sales worse than cold, soggy fries. Their reaction to this drought is a documentary made by Iowa high-school science teacher, John Cisna, titled: “540 Meals: Choices Make the Difference.” It serves as a not-so-veiled retort to Morgan Spurlock’s “Supersize Me,” where Cisna uses a different approach to Spurlock’s Supersizing of meals he ate in McDonald’s every day for a month – a move that caused him problems including weight gain, increased cholesterol, and mood swings.
Cisna instead ate 2,000 calories a day sampling every item on the McDonald’s menu, even desserts, claiming to lose 56 pounds in the process. Cisna is now a “Brand Ambassador” for McDonald’s and visits high schools extolling the virtues of the fast food chain's new drive to encourage diners to make informed meal choices. Of course, there are critics of the 20-minute documentary, such as Betina Elias Siegel's blog, The Lunch Tray, being the most vocal. An advocate of healthy eating for children, she lambasted the documentary as being a “veritable infomercial for the beleaguered fast food chain.” McDonald’s meanwhile defends promoting Cisna’s documentary, disavowing their involvement in the production. A spokesperson said it was an: “original experiment conducted independent of McDonald’s, and McDonald’s Corp.”
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