Saturday, November 22, 2014

Weekly Whine: McDonald's Shaming

I am seriously sick of all the shaming that goes on around eating at McDonald's. If you don't like McDonald's and don't think they taste good, then don't eat there. But don't act like you're better than everyone else because you don't eat there or other fast food restaurants.

Someone recently made a comment on this blog that they could tell I was stressed out because I take my kids to McDonald's a lot. First of all, I don't know how a complete stranger who mostly just reads blog entries that I largely wrote before I even had kids knows how often i take my children to a particular restaurant. I probably take them there once or twice a week on average. I try to limit the number of times I take them there, not because I think they are so unhealthy, but because it's a pain in the neck to wait for the drive through and it's more expensive than making something at home. Plus then when we go to McDonald's, it's a special treat that everyone gets excited about.

Is McDonald unhealthy for children? Seriously, I don't think so. Maybe McDonald's is more healthy than some gourmet cook making special organic meals for her child every day or something. But I am willing to bet that the average woman does not give her children food that is healthier than McDonald's.

Most children love the following foods: chicken nuggets, fish sticks, pizza, etc. my kids demand chicken nuggets almost daily. I looked up the nutritional value of the "healthy" frozen chicken nuggets that I buy at the grocery store. And guess what? They have the exact same number of calories and fat as the nuggets at McDonald's. So if I get them a side of apple slices and a yogurt with the nuggets, am I really subjecting my children to something so horrible? And I think the little burger they get there is probably healthier than most red meat dishes I might make for the kids.

Probably the main reason I limit McDonald's is because the stuff that I get there is much worse than the stuff that I make for myself at home. And the temptation to get myself something is too strong if I do the drive-by.

I just think there's too much McDonald's judging going on when it comes to children. In small children, I don't think McDonald's is contributing to obesity. At least not based on the caloric and fat content of their food for kids.

66 comments:

  1. Hmmm. 1-2 times per week is a LOT of McDonalds. And, just because "most mothers" do something, does not make it A-OK. Yes, most families feed their children high calorie, low nutrient food much of the time, but that doesn't make a) that practice ok, or b) going to McDonalds as a substitute ok.

    But, I am guessing that you just posted this to be argumentative, and don't really think it's healthy.

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    1. I'm not trying to be argumentative, but I do welcome people refuting my assertion, as long as it's done without anger.

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    2. Agreed. Here's a suggestion, Dr. Fizzy and only a suggestion. How about
      adding in some easy meals to prepare: peanut butter and jelly sandwiches,
      spaghetti, and of course, leftovers from a nearby restaurant. I don't believe
      in shaming people and understand that you're doing your best. Paul

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    3. We eat about 20 meals a week at that are not fast food, so I think I do know how to prepare a meal for my children. I know how to make a peanut butter sandwich.

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    4. My above comment was meant to be helpful, not hurtful, Dr. Fizzy.
      My Mom, a single parent, used to make us sloppy Joes, spaghetti,
      etc. as she was working two jobs to support us. I meant no harm. - Paul

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    5. Sorry if I was snippy. But you can see how it sounds little condescending to tell me to make my kids a peanut butter sandwich when I am just talking about giving the McDonald's once a week as a treat or a break when I made them meals every other day of the week.

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    6. Understood. I can see how it can be construed as condescending. It wasn't my intention, but nonetheless that was the effect. I apologize. - Paul

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    7. Paul -- Don't apologize. Fizzy wrote this post so that she would get a ton of comments because she was feeling like a fight. She does this sometimes. IMO it's pretty entertaining to watch the pyrotechnics. It's not you, it's her.

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    8. At Anon at 8:42 AM: Perhaps she was feeling like a fight because she felt misunderstood. It's hurtful when you feel people are judging you unfairly. To the extent, I contributed to it, I felt I owed her an apology. It wasn't intentional, but it was hurtful. Thank you, though, for your kind words. - Paul

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  2. I have never commented on your random references to McDonald's, but since you have written a post specifically on this topic, here is my 2 cents:
    1 to 2 meals a week is arguably a LOT. The concern I would have, assuming this is any of my business, which I recognize it really isn't, is that you currently control what your kids eat there. Down the line, when you are not controlling what they eat there, this is what could happen: They will get out of school, soccer practice, whatever, and think: dad and mom are still not home, let's just go to the old stand-by, McDonald's, and pick something up. But now they are older and hungrier, so they don't want a happy meal, especially not one with apple slices and yogurt -- they want a big mac, fries, and a soda. Maybe a McFlurry for dessert. That's not in any way a healthy meal. Although I admit it is a very yummy one.
    It's the conditioning them early on that McDonald's is a great place to eat that concerns me. Because on the whole, you cannot seriously think that it is. No freaking way. When I was a kid, McDonald's was a special treat we got once or twice a YEAR. Yes, yes, yes, my mom was a stay a home mother. So a different scenario. But, I have to think that take home food from the hot and salad bars at Whole Foods (where there is a shit-ton of selection of food, including kid favorites, available almost every night) has to be a better choice in general. Agree that Whole Foods is not necessarily low fat or low cal, but the QUALITY of the food is far superior. Fewer chemicals and fillers, better quality meat, little to no soda sales (I think they only sell natural sodas, but definitely not pepsi or coke) etc. etc. etc.
    And in case anyone is interested, here are the ingredients in McDonald's chicken nuggets: White boneless chicken, water, food starch-modified, salt, seasoning (autolyzed yeast extract, salt, wheat starch, natural flavoring (botanical source), safflower oil,
    dextrose, citric acid, rosemary), sodium phosphates, seasoning (canola oil, mono- and diglycerides, extractives of rosemary). Battered and breaded with: water,
    enriched flour (bleached wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamin mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), yellow corn flour, food starch-modified, salt, leavening (baking
    soda, sodium acid pyrophosphate, sodium aluminum phosphate, monocalcium phosphate, calcium lactate), spices, wheat starch, whey, corn starch. Prepared in
    vegetable oil (Canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil, hydrogenated soybean oil with TBHQ and citric acid added to preserve freshness). Dimethylpolysiloxane added as an
    antifoaming agent.
    For Bell and Evans chicken tenders sold at Whole Foods (just cut them into small pieces and you can call them nuggets): chicken breast eat tenders, water, salt, unbleached white flour, evaporated cane juice, dried yeast, spices, paprika

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    1. Don't get me started on whole foods and their salad bar. I was recently there and thought the salad bar was completely disgusting, full of fatty, congealed, and high calorie foods. Arguably, the kids could just take salad and not the entrée dishes, but what kid is going to agree to do that?  (actually, my kid loves salad and eats it several nights a week, but she's probably rare.). So I let my kid take a small tray of food from the whole foods salad bar and it cost $15 for one kid to eat lunch. How is that in anyway reasonable? I will never go to that salad bar again.

      I'm sorry, I just think whole foods is a huge rip off.

      My husband made the same argument as you about McDonald's teaching them bad eating habits. But I disagree. If I only took my kids to McDonald's once a year, it might take on a mystical quality, and the second she had free range to do what she wants, she might go there all the time. When I was a kid, I got to go to McDonald's a lot. Then when I was in high school and college, I completely was sick of it and only went maybe once a year, if that. 

      My argument is largely that as a working mom who has about 20 minutes to put together dinner, I don't think there's anything I would be making my kids at home that would be better than what's in a happy meal.

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    2. True, not everything at Whole Foods is good for you, but come on, your argument about McDonald's is bull. And I gave you the ingredients of McNuggets versus something you by at Whole Foods. You cannot possibly argue that the McNuggets are the better choice.

      And by the way, you are always first to admit that you are blessed with a body/metabolism that is one of those where you can't pack on weight even if you wanted to. I think if you were someone like me, who has to fight, and I mean really FIGHT, to keep my weight in the normal range, you wouldn't be able to stand by many of your arguments. If I ate at McDonald's once or twice a week, I would easily have several extra lbs on my 5'3" frame, and that is not insignificant. And I also have high cholesterol, have always had it, even as a kid, so my doctors tells me it must be genetic. No way in hell McDonald's a couple of times a week would be good for me. If your kids take after me (and I was a super skinny kid until puberty, so it's not like you can tell today what your kids will be like as they get older), I'm sorry, you are potentially setting them up for failure with regard to health. I am 100% with your husband on this.

      And, listen, I don't have kids because I can't due to a rare medical condition. So you can blather on about how I just don't get it. But come on. My neighbor has two boys. They eat what she gives them. Period. One had all sorts of aversions to various foods because he had almost a nausea/vomiting reaction to foods with certain tastes and textures. She made him eat a little of those foods a bit at a time until he got past the issue. It is possible to make kids eat healthy and also not ruin their lives by being adamant about it.
      Like I said, the Bell and Evans tenders are at Whole Foods. Remove from the box, put in the oven, they are done in 30 minutes. How is that hard to accomplish on a work day? It's not. You just like McDonald's, admit it!

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    3. I do like McDonald's! And I'm not ashamed to admit it.  that's the whole point.

      I don't have any kind of amazing metabolism. I have a weak stomach and I've become physically ill if I eat too much. That's a hard lesson I've learned over the years.  But my husband has been overweight his entire adult life. However, in the last few years, he has made an effort and lost 60 pounds Without exercising. And kept it off.  He still goes to McDonald's once or twice a week, but he just looks at the calories of the things he is getting. The cheeseburger is only 300 cal.  If that's your entire lunch, you should still be good.  And I cook most of the other meals and make sure that those are healthy.  He cuts out treats and soda too.

      My point is, you can still be healthy even if you eat at McDonald's once or twice a week. My husband is evidence of that, even if he doesn't want to be.

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  3. The 80/20 rule is useful, and taking your kids to McDonalds for two meals a week gives then a good introduction to the concept. If the majority of your diet is real food, and the kids learn that McDonalds food is enjoyable, but only in moderation, they will be better prepared to manage their diets as young adults than if you try to convince them that they should never eat fast food. Incidentally, I have heard that several individuals have tried and failed to replicate the results of Supersize Me, so eating at McDonalds every day, while certainly not wise, is probably not as bad as most Americans have been lead to believe. Phil

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    1. Actually, we usually go for McDonald's on Saturday for lunch, and last week, my daughter said she was sick of it and didn't want it. So we just ate at home instead. I definitely don't feel like I am building any sort of McDonald's obsession.

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  4. I think one of the other questions to ask here is what you mean by "health." It's not all about fat and calories. If the grade of meat is substandard, and there are fillers, you can't every say that's healthy food even if the burger is only 300 calories and low in fat. If you think eating that a couple of times a week is still healthy, ok, but some may not share that view. I say this as someone who eats McDonald's occasionally, so I'm not a prude who refuses to eat there.

    PS all you people with kids - enjoy your Thanksgiving while I work that day, even though my dad is currently in the ICU 4 hours away from where I work. No one wanted to switch with me despite my circumstances, but I know from one of the blog posts a couple of years ago that you guys should always get priority on important holidays, so enjoy! and you're welcome!

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    1. I'm sorry to hear about your father. When I was actually trying to say in that post along time ago that I thought people who had the most need to be off on a particular holiday should get priority, and having small kids and a lack of childcare constitutes a need. I have small kids but I do have childcare, so I am voluntarily working Thanksgiving and Christmas, because there were other people who wanted it more and I was happy to let them have it.  If somebody doesn't want to switch with you so that you can see your dad in the ICU, they are a piece of shit, and that has nothing to do with having small kids or not.

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  5. I personally believe teaching kids about having things in moderation is far more effective in the long run than forbidding fast food altogether. Having McDonald's 1-2x a week isn't that big of a deal to me. Growing up we probably had fast food 1-2x a week and my mom also kept a "candy drawer" at home where we kept leftover candy from holidays, birthday parties, etc. None of us ever had a problem with binge eating the candy and honestly usually a large portion of it went bad before anyone ate it. My mom always says how growing up she could tell which of our friends weren't allowed those things at home because once they found out we had a candy drawer they couldn't stay out of it.

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    1. Also to add my siblings and I are all healthy weight adults now. Some of the friends I am thinking of with the diet restrictions, not so much. And before you blame it on good genes, there are definitely many outside my immediate family with obesity issues.

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    2. I agree with this. My husband wasn't allowed fast food as a child, and when I met him, he ate far more fast food than I did even though I got to eat it liberally as a child.

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  6. THIS is what McDonald's does to people!!!
    http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/nyc-crime/man-fighting-life-run-mcdonald-article-1.2019990

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  7. Amen. McD's and the like were saved for treats or "good Lord, it's 5 p.m. and I just walked in the door and have nothing defrosted" emergency. You pick your battles. A fast-food dinner is balanced by a month of home-cooked fare. I am sick and tired of "uber parents" helicoptering over my kids.

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  8. A few years ago Time magazine had an interesting article that examined the rise of obesity in countries outside of the US. I never examined the data too closely, but they noted that obesity began to increase as western (specifically, American) food institutions built up in these countries. McDonald's and Burger King (which I guess is now technically Canadian) were cited. Correlation is not causation and all that, but institutions from the country at the heart of the "obesity epidemic" being associated with obesity in other countries? It's unlikely to be random chance.

    However, the other question is what is it about McDonald's that is so unhealthy. As you've pointed out, the food isn't necessarily worse than what people are buying for themselves (assuming they're buying pre-made things). Is there something about the restaurant that causes most people to over-eat? (Red and yellow color schemes supposedly induce hunger in people.) Is it the soda that frequently accompanies the meals in large sizes? (I think this one is largely proven.) Is it the food itself? (Still being debated.)

    I never felt that you were going to fast food restaurants excessively based on your entries, and most years the number of times that I eat out can be counted on two hands (unless you count the hospital cafeteria as eating out). I also try not to judge anyone for eating there with their children. But it's a bit difficult not to judge if you see parents with a young, obese child eating at a place like that.

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    1. I agree with your assertion, Ledgem, that " it's a bit difficult not to judge
      if you see parents with a young, obese child eating at a place like that."
      However, having worked for the poor as a volunteer, I also understand
      the harsh reality that comes with it. Being poor, or in the lower class,
      not only limits your choices but also comes with a whole host of
      other problems. I'm not excusing the behavior but not judging it either.
      - Paul

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    2. I think portion size has got to have a lot to do with it. When I go to a restaurant, I usually can only eat about a quarter of what's on my plate. But a lot of people feel a need to clean their plates or eat whatever is in front of them.

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    3. Agreed Dr. Fizzy. Portion size is part of the problem. More than not, the Mrs. and I take home half our meals from restaurants for the next day.
      However, the mindset of a poor person and the difficulties they face is
      unimaginable. I know you're not judging them but needed to clarify.

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  9. As I child I would only get mcdonald's probably 2-3 times a year and once I was in college I binged on mcdonald's a lot. It took around a year before I was really sick of it and couldn't even stand the smell of it. Honestly mcdonald's is still tasty and I don't mind having it every few months. I have the luxury of living near many great fast food places such as in and out, chipotle, and soup plantation so it is easy and convenient for me to make healthy choices. Fizzy, I don't know where you live but I get the impression you aren't surrounded by many fast food choices which is why you and your family eat at mcdonald's often. I personally hate the way I feel after eating mcdonald's, I can literally feel my GI system backing up and it takes days for me to be regular again. That alone is a case for avoiding mcdonalds if you can!

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    1. The great thing about McDonald's is the fact that you don't have to get out of the car. Getting out of the car is like the biggest hassle ever when you have two little kids, especially if it is raining or snowing, which it is a great deal of the year. We have a chipotle, but it will involve not only getting the kids out of the car but navigating through a mall. We don't end up going there much.

      If there were a healthy restaurant that had a drive-through, I would definitely go there sometimes.

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  10. I love bacon and egg mcmuffins. 320 calories, filling, lots of protein, and very tasty. It's bacon, an egg, a slice of cheese, and an English muffin - exactly what I would be making myself for breakfast if I had time in the morning. Keeps me full and I don't get the after-workout hunger rage two hours later.

    There is food that is terrible for you at every restaurant, and there are healthier choices (which usually don't include the salads.) It's all about knowing what you're eating.

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    1. Cheese does not exist at McDonalds. It doesn't even look like cheese. I have no idea what it is. I just know what it isn't.

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  11. How many sit down restaurants automatically give the kids a fruit or a dairy with a small serving of fries? Usually they can choose one side, not a small serving of two. Eat healthy or "healthier" the rest of the weeks and a McDonald's meal a week isn't going to kill you.

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  12. When I was growing up, we went to McDonald's at least once a week because my mom loves it. It was a fun Saturday thing to do as kids. And now that I'm an adult, I go to McDonald's maybe 2 or 3 times a year, even though I live about 3 blocks away from one. The novelty wore off. It was fun as a kid, and it didn't doom me to a life of eating nothing but fries. Kids might as well enjoy some junk food as a treat every now and then while they're young and their metabolisms and digestive systems can still handle it. :)

    -Some random doctor

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  13. I think its ridiculous for anyone to comment that 1 to 2 times a week is A LOT, or as if places like Chipotle were heads and tails better. It all comes down to portion size and the food choices made. It's simply en vogue for holier-than-thou do gooders to hate on anything "perceived" to be unhealthy like fast food, television, plastic, or vaccines.

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    1. McDonalds is disgusting. As is almost all other fast food. American chocolate is disgusting. As is most other American candy. Wonderbread is disgusting. All of them are unhealthy. There is no "perception" issue here. It is fact.
      For the record, I eat them all. But let's be honest with ourselves. On the scale of best to worst foods, they are at the bottom. If you can't accept that, you are in complete denial.

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    2. This is exactly my point. Unless you are making all your food from scratch, anything you get from the supermarket is probably just as bad. So there's no reason to act so superior because your food comes from the supermarket rather than a fast food place.

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    3. grass fed beef: vastly superior to McDonald's beef. European chocolate: vastly superior to American chocolate. Fresh baked bread at the grocery store: vastly superior to Wonderbread. You can buy all this stuff at the grocery store. Keep trying to justify McDonald's all you want --- but you just can't. It's not a superiority complex. It is fact.

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    4. A few months back I read an article online: Fish to avoid due to high levels of PCB and mercury. Now, the latest scare is arsenic in rice. Meat, of course, is high in saturated fat and so on and so on. My mother used to tell me, everything in moderation. If eating McDonalds 1-2x a week works for Dr. Fizzy, so be it. Let's stop the shame game and be a little bit more understanding.

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    5. No one is shaming. The blog suggests that nutrition is nutrition is nutrition. And that is patently false. That is the only point I am making. There are different levels of food quality, and quality directly correlates to nutrition, and McDonald's is not nutritious.
      I EAT AT MCDONALDS. Everyone else is welcome to do the same. I just don't try to fool myself into thinking that it is nutritious.

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    6. I never said that McDonald's is nutritious. I just think that it is equally nutritious to the vast majority of dinners that parents are serving their children.

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    7. Fizzy, that is EXACTLY what your post is saying. You said you supposedly compared food labels to compare to McDonald's and you said fi they are the same amount of calories and fat means McDonalds is just as good as any other food, as if those are the only two criteria for nutrition. Re-read your own post, for god's sake!

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    8. Well, you can go ahead and look up the ingredients in the Purdue frozen chicken nuggets, and tell me if it looks so "nutritious." Based on the number of kids houses I've been to in the last few years for play dates, I can guarantee that the vast majority of parents are not buying their meals at whole foods for one dollar per nugget. They are feeding her kids frozen nuggets from the supermarket, and not the fancy kind, macaroni and cheese from a box, Hot dogs from the package, or Skippy peanut butter. If any of that is truly more nutritious than a happy meal, I would be incredibly surprised.

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    9. Well, if you compare McDonald's to frozen chicken nuggets or microwave meals, then sure, there is probably little difference. But I would not even consider making mac and cheese from the box (cheese that doesn't have to be refrigerated? yikes). I make simple dishes from scratch or (most often) order deliveries from restaurants. I don't have kids though which probably makes a world of difference. When I was a kid my parents took me to McDonald's probably twice a week and I was still always the skinniest person in class (still am skinny). It makes me kind of sick now to think of what I ate there. And the candy, bleh. Now I developed this weird thing where I am really disgusted whenever I see something of "unidentifiable" origin (like those Haribo gummy bears, how is that supposed to be food?). But I loved those things as a kid.

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    10. What interesting here is that I have not heard even one person comment that their parents took them to McDonald's a lot as a kid, and as a result, they now go all the time as an adult and have terrible eating habits. Not even one.

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    11. Those people don't usually read blogs by doctors.

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    12. It could just be the same 'I am a grown up now, I should be eating healthier than *McDonalds*. Or 'McD is boring now; there are much tastier offerings available at other restaurants, even fast food ones'.

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  14. Also, don't forget that these places intentionally try to addict you to your food. Go ahead, look it up, that beef flavoring added to the fries and all that MSG they use is there for a reason. It took decades for McDonald's to fess up that they added flavoring to the fries to make them "taste better" to unsuspecting consumers.

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    1. SMH! Duh! What restaurant doesn't add flavoring to their food to make it taste better? What restaurant doesn't want you to crave a menu item that brings you back time and again to eat it? Hmmmm, maybe if I added flavoring to my food at home my kids would become addicted to my cooking.

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    2. OK, Steph, other than restaurants that serve crap food, like Applebees, name some that put crap in their food to make it taste better. Go ahead. Put your money where your mouth is.

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    3. Can any of you read subtext? I can't speak for Dr. Fizzy, but it appears to me that she feels judged harshly for taking her girls to McDonalds 1-2x a week. Does she plan on doing this for the long run? I highly doubt it, but it works for now. More or less, kids eat junk. We all know that. Yes, the chicken nuggets out of a box of Bell and Evans is healthier. However, a chicken nugget is a chicken nugget, however you slice it. Also, please keep in mind that 95% of the meals that are being served
      in her household are not fast food. So, as a mother, tired of the shaming, she was looking for a little validation. Instead, you "rub" labels into her face accusing her of being an irresponsible mother. Is that fair? Do any of you see where I'm going with this? It's not the end of the world that she takes her girls to "M" 1-2x a week. Feel free to criticize as you know some of you do that so very well. By the way, to Anon at 6:12AM,
      I'm sorry about the medical condition that made it impossible for you to have children. Your pain registered with me.

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    4. Anon, 6:20 am. I am NOT saying she is an irresponsible mother. McDonalds all day every day is irresponsible. She's not doing that. I am taking issue, however, with her insistence that McDonald's is as good as other food. How can anyone possibly agree with that contention?
      Keep in mind that a good reason for the post is less about validation and more about stoking people into getting emotional about this topic. She knows perfectly well that reasonable minds can differ on this stuff so there is no reason to make this post unless she is looking for people to respond the way they have.

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    5. AnonymousNovember 22, 2014 at 1:59 PM- You do not make any sense. How about you name one restaurant that doesn't flavor their food with either salt, pepper, MSG, bullion, a mix of spices or something. How can somebody be so naive to NOT know restaurants add things to their food to make it taste better so people want to eat it. I am not sure how many restaurants there are out there that don't have high fat, high cholesterol, and high sugar choices on their menu that could be considered crap. They are definitely few and far between, but I bet even they flavor their food with something.

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  15. Quite honestly, all this talk about McDonalds has made me hungry for a happy meal.
    So, I'm going to put on some football, watch my team lose and eat a happy meal.
    Because dammit, I want to be HAPPY!

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    1. Love it! Enjoy your Happy Meal...in moderation!

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  16. You're spot on - it's far better to teach our children to stop when they are full. All things in moderation.

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  17. I agree, kids often make seemingly simple errands much more complicated. When you factor in weather it gets so much worse!

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  18. I made the original comment that Fizzy got so upset about, and now dedicated the whole post to it. My point in making comment was - she is stressed out, somehow, her family members are not helping enough, or something. She seems to always pull her weight by herself/impression from her writing. You don't have to know you in person, Fizzy to see that you are quite streched. I do not know any women doctors, who are as bitter/angry and want to fight in the sotre or on the blog. (And BTW all my doctor friends/mothers work full time) And Fizzy just confirmed this impression - she has only 20 min to put dinner on the table. I was in the same situation when I worked full time in busy practice and barely made day care pick up times. It was when my husbund worked out of town. It was so difficult, we both had to change jobs. My comment was not made as judgment on your choice of restaurant, but recognition of your hard schedule. You seem very sensitive to everything related to Mcdonalds. If you and your kids like it you do not have to defend yourself. I love their apple pies and file-o-fish, and never get upset if someone is disgisted by my taste. In fact my close friend told me once she would never dine in a restaurant of my choice, when we met for dinner. We had to drive to restaurant of her choice.

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    1. I know you are trying to be nice and not realizing quite how what you're saying sounds, so I will respond in kind.

      I'm not angry. The purpose of this blog is at least in part to entertain other people, so when somebody writes something that I feel would be an interesting topic for discussion, I post it. I like to have discussions with people on matters that are important to me, and I hope that these discussions can be had without anger. I've made repeated requests that people are cordial in their responses on my posts.  I really tried to reply politely to most people who are polite to me. I think wanting to have a discussion on a topic does not make me a bitter or angry person.  getting frustrated with somebody making assumptions about me doesn't make me an angry person either.

      In terms of what you just wrote to me, the truth is that you don't know me at all. Saying that you don't know anyone as "bitter and angry" as me is ridiculous.  I hope you can see how insulting that is, and just plain wrong. You have no idea what the people around you are writing on anonymous blogs in their free time. I don't think I am a bitter or angry person, and I can tell you with 100% certainty that nobody I know in real life thinks that I am bitter or angry.  I am sort of person who is very laid-back and during my interactions with other people, I usually have a smile on my face.  My daughter actually recently commented to me that I always seem happy.

      Do I have stress in my life? Absolutely. Is it beyond what every other working mother with two small children has? I doubt it.

      But none of this has anything to do with how often I take my children to McDonald's. I just don't like people making assumptions about me.

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    2. Different anonymous from the first one - I'm just curious as to why you care what your anonymous posters think. I'm honestly asking, not making a snarky remark or anything. You spend a lot of time reiterating and defending your position to people that, in all likelihood, you will never meet in person. I also follow dr. grumpy's blog, and he never seems to respond to his commentors, particularly the more aggressive ones. I really enjoy your blog, and it seems like that might be a less aggravating (for you) way to go.

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    3. I don't genuinely care that much. This is just something to entertain me while I'm stuck in a back room catching up on dictations.

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    4. got it - makes sense now.

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    5. Totally different anonymous here...a LOT of working moms with young kids are frazzled and having to get dinner ready in 20 minutes right after getting home. So instead of just judging doctor moms, how about you make it a whole mommy war thing, hmm?

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  19. Same daughter who told you in the store "Mommy, please don't get angry"?

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    1. Yep. Believe it or not, you can have occasional moments of anger and still generally be a pleasant and happy person. I think my anger upsets her especially because I reserve it for times when I am especially upset.

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    2. As the child of a single mother growing up, I had a front row seat to the difficulties women face on a daily basis. My mother did not have the
      luxury to cook from scratch for myself and my sister. Yes, Dr. Fizzy
      has childcare and a husband as well, but she is the first one to say
      so although her life is very challenging. In response to a post, Dr, Fizzy
      writes, " I am voluntarily working Thanksgiving and Christmas because there were other people who wanted it more and I was happy to let them have it." She then adds, "If somebody doesn't want to switch with you
      so that you can see your Dad in the ICU, they are a piece of shit, and
      that has nothing to do with having small kids or not."
      Does that sound like an angry person or more like a righteous person.
      Yes, Dr. Fizzy doesn't do well with injustice, but because she's a woman
      she's labeled angry. If she was man, she would be seen as assertive.
      Lastly, as a participant on her blog and someone who has read her books, I enjoy her wonderful sense of humor and perspective on life.
      Dr. Fizzy, my hat's off to you. You're doing a remarkable job and
      you have nothing but my respect. - Paul

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    3. Thank you, Paul. I was looking through my comments on this post, to see if I sounded completely bat shit insane or angry in any of them. Admittedly, I did make that one snippy comment about the peanut butter sandwiches, which I immediately apologized for.  But I actually thought I sounded pretty calm and reasonable in my replies to everyone, which was basically how I was feeling when I wrote the replies.  Some people were actually quite rude to me, and I was perfectly polite back.  So I really don't know why everyone thinks I'm upset, aside from the fact that I am taking the time to reply to people's thoughtful comments.

      Interestingly, my husband has these political discussions with his brother where the two of them are screaming at each other at the top of their lungs sometimes, and when I tell them to calm down, they say that they're just playing around and not really upset.  My response is that they should at least keep the cursing to a minimum in front of the children :). Anyway, I do wonder if my responses would be perceived differently if I were a man.

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    4. At times, Dr. Fizzy, I can be pedantic in the way I speak and write. Others have told me so too. Although I meant no harm, my advice had
      a condescending tone about it. You were absolutely right to call me on it,
      and did not owe me any apology although you offered one, just the same. Having grown up in a household with a single mother, maternal grandmother and older sister, all strong women, I fully appreciate the
      difficulties and unfairness, at times, that comes with being a woman.
      In this society, women are objectified and criticized for their appearance,
      treated as hysterical or angry bitches for asserting themselves with the
      expectation of being "good housewives" even when they are working
      mothers themselves. Personally, I think it stinks. Your expectations
      are reasonable, Dr. Fizzy. Unfortunately, there are a lot of unreasonable,
      rude people who will make you question your own judgment. Trust me,
      Dr. Fizzy, your instincts are good. And one last thing, I know your heart.
      You never need to apologize to me. - Paul

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