Food Day: The Antidote to the “Monster Meal”


Our friends at the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) just published their 7th annual Xtreme Eating Awards, in which they find some of the most caloric and nutritionally devoid menu items at chain restaurants.

Some of the stats on the “winners” ranged from 30 to 93 grams of fat, 2,230 to 7,610 milligrams of sodium, 14 to 38 teaspoons of added sugar, and 1,500-3,950 calories. Consider the Monster Meal from Red Robin:

The entire Monster Meal delivers almost two days’ worth of calories (3,540), 3½ days’ saturated fat (69 grams), and four days’ sodium (6,280 milligrams). Roughly half of each comes from the burger plus just one serving of Bottomless Steak Fries and half comes from the shake. And you can blame the shake for most of the estimated 38 teaspoons of added sugar."

It is also worth mentioning that the Cheesecake Factory won three out of the nine spots.

If you are as disgusted by this as we are and you want to help make a difference in our food system, the folks at CSPI are with you once again via their annual Food Day. Scheduled for October 24 this year, Food Day is a nationwide celebration to promote healthy, affordable, and sustainably produced food. It’s made up of grassroots initiatives started by people like you, so if you want to join the cause, head on over to their site and check out their Organizing Guides. Also, if you happen to be in California, or you just want to learn more, a statewide Food Day planning webinar will take place on August 14 and you can register for it here. To get your wheels turning (whether you are in California or not) here is a list of a few projects already scheduled:

  • Organizers in Berkeley will plan their Food Day event around supporting a ballot measure in the November 2014 election for a Soda Tax.  The tax would charge a one-cent-per-ounce fee on sugary drinks sold in the city.  Food Day will be used as a flashpoint to drum up support for the vote!

  • In Del Norte, The Food Council of Del Norte and Adjacent Tribal Lands will organize a great series of events. They will be coordinating with the California Food Policy Council on a publication release they plan for Food Day as part of ... celebrations.

  • In San Diego, the 2nd Annual Good Food Community Fair will bring San Diegans together to celebrate sustainability and healthy living.


 Read all articles by Damon Cory-Watson 

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