A More Healthy Image for McDonald’s? Probably Not

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It’s not every day that we find inklings of good news coming from the world of fast food, so when we saw this headline: McDonald’s Confronts Its Junk Food Image it jumped out at us.

For a brief second we thought that we might read about big nutritional menu changes at McDonald’s, but after delving in, we learned that the fast food giant is just on another marketing and rebranding kick. However, the implicit good news for us here at WW is that McDonald’s is getting the point that it may soon be time for it to reconsider the unhealthy food it serves.

Candice Choi explains that in the face of slipping sales, McDonalds is trying to convince customers that its food can appease those more discerning tastes:

It's just one way McDonald's is trying to change its image. In the past 18 months, the chain has introduced the option to substitute egg whites in breakfast sandwiches and rolled out chicken wraps as its first menu item with cucumbers. Last fall, it announced plans to give people the choice of a salad instead of fries in combo meals. And in coming months, mandarins will be offered in Happy Meals, with other fruits being explored as well."

However, she also explains that attempts to offer healthier options in the past have fallen flat, mostly because people categorically don’t associate the fast food chain with healthy food:

The low-cost burgers, ice cream cones and other food that made McDonald's so popular since it was founded in 1955 have come to define it. And some people can't get over the idea that low prices equal low quality."

We agree! Though we know that McDonald’s (and really all fast food) menu items will never achieve a truly healthy status, it is nice to know that pressure from consumers, nutrition activists, and others is pushing the company to consider how they will need to do things differently.

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