I attended a nutritional instruction at McDonald’s and tried out some of their new breakfast items. I was not required to write this post, but I had fun, so I thought I’d share with you 🙂
Lately I’ve been trying to stay really active with local events with other bloggers. I know that when Luke is in our lives, on the outside, I won’t be able to sneak off as easily as I can right now. But this past Sunday morning, our family had a chance to go to one together, and learn a bit about the nutritional side of McDonald’s. I know, I know. You thinking I’m crazy. But Jon and I really did learn a lot from Monica Montes, RD, the Nutritionist that was on hand, and her first statement really struck a chord with me – It’s not where you eat, it’s what you eat.
Growing up, there was a McDonald’s literally 200 feet from my elementary school. This meant some quick dinners there on the way home, some sneaking over during school hours (shhhh! You would have done it too!!), and a tour of one with our after school program. But back then, in the 90s, everything was different. No one seemed to put much importance on what you ordered from McDonald’s. No one cared. It wasn’t meant to be healthy, it was just fast food.
But, people started caring, and things started changing. The menu now involves so many more options that I sometimes just freak out and order whatever has the Chicken McNuggets on it. I’m afraid of change. It’s true. I love their Egg McMuffin and the gooey cheese that is melted on top. But, there’s a new McMuffin in town – the Egg White Delight McMuffin. It has no yolk and uses white cheddar. It still has the same muffin breading, and slice of canadian bacon. Jon and I had wanted to try it last weekend, but we missed the breakfast window. Jon loves the Egg McMuffin. He was very skeptic of this new, healthier alternative.
I love this friggin sandwich. Jon loved it too. He said that he felt so much better after he ate it. He didn’t feel weighed down. This Egg White Delight McMuffin has 250 calories and the muffin has eight grams of whole grain.
While we were learning more, I decided I should also be good and add a fruit to my meal. The nutritionist explained by having each of the 5 components each meal should have (fruit, grain, vegetable, protein & dairy), your body will function better. That’s why in hospitals, each meal provided includes this.
The Blueberry Pomegranate Smoothie was really good. I’ve seen them on a few times on the commercials with my TV iPad apps (ya know, since we ditched cable) and I’ve seen them a few times on Instagram. It had just enough sweetness mixed with tang and a good source of even more fruits for me and Baby Luke. Yay!
After the Nutritionist was done, we went on a tour of the kitchen. This McDonald’s reminded me a lot of the one that was by my school. We had to be careful maneuvering around, as it was tight quarters. My belly bump was hard to fit through some parts. Everyone must be very aware of their surroundings while working and moving efficiently!
Of course I needed to take a photo of my favorite spot – the fry fryer. As we went through the tour, the store manager gave us some information on each spot. The container that holds the frozen fries would be dumped if the fries had been sitting in there for 3o minutes, as they start to defrost and when cooked, don’t give you that crisp bite at the end. Everything has a lifespan that, once hits, means the food is dumped. But they are constantly working to evaluate and adjust how much is being made so the waste is as low as possible. She said that during the lunch rush, 3 bags of fries is gone within 10 minutes.
The grill area is also constantly monitored. There’s a printout that reflects the past week’s numbers with how much was sold during different intervals to help serve as a guideline to ensure nothing is over or under produced. All patties are also hand salt & peppered and if you don’t want that on your burger, you can request it during ordering.
On the way home, Jon and I were talking about what we learned from the nutritionist – and how to apply it to our home life. Who would have thought we’d be discussing that after visiting McDonald’s? Well we did. We’re going to work harder on our portion controls, and having all 5 groups represented as much as possible. We figured starting small (dinners) and working our way out can help. Below are some of the tweets I was sending out – because that’s how I take notes 🙂
- Nutritionist has been in over 1800 homes, and one common trend – most are not taught when to learn they’ve had enough to eat.
- We are trained to over buy food. Even our plates are too big. Europe is the only country to maintain the same serving size.
- If you don’t eat throughout the day, it changes your metabolism, body composition, and the cravings of “storage foods” (which means, the high fatty ones)
- You should eat within 1 hour of waking up
- Our bodies know 3 modes – Sleeping, Eating, Exercising.
- Choosemyplate.gov is a great resource, to help teach us the relationship between food and our bodies
- Whole grains should contain 3 grams of fiber (or more)
- Grains are our long-term energy source. It should be 1/4 of your plate (appx 1 cup). But kids tend to eat the adult portions. Different (smaller) for them
- Fruits & Veggies help clean our organs. They are the toothbrush for our insides.
- Institute a rule in your home – when groceries arrive – everyone stops what they’re doing and helps to wash, cut & pack all the fruits & veggies. Takes 20-30 minutes and then life resumes. Make it a family practice.
- Kids can become emotionally attached to food. Don’t make it a negative experience for them. Find positive, fun ways to introduce their fruits & veggies.
- Proteins are your building block. Your daily allotment should fit in your palm. This is not per meal. The entire day.
- If you’re eating from all 5 categories, you won’t be starving.
- McDonald’s is very transparent with their reporting. All menu nutritional facts are online and in store.
- The New Happy Meal includes fruits along with the fries.