A popular low-budget film, “Super Size Me,” documented the effects of a 30-day McDonald’s-only diet. Morgan Spurlock ate breakfast, lunch and dinner at McDonald’s for 30 days. He gained 25 pounds, increased cholesterol by 65 points, lost interest in sex and developed a serious case of acne. His physical deterioration was rapid and astounding. Columbia University researchers found that eating a large burger and fries for lunch every day increased the risk of stroke by 65 percent. The burger-fries lunch is high in fat (65 grams) and salt (4,000 milligrams). The American Heart Association recommends that people limit their sodium intake to a little more than half a teaspoon (1,500 milligrams) of salt per day; it recommends reducing saturated fat to no more than 5 to 6 percent of total daily calories. For someone eating 2,000 calories a day, that’s about 11 to 13 grams of saturated fat. High salt intake increases blood pressure, which increases stroke risk.
Still craving for a burger? Buffalo burgers are a much healthier option. Buffalo burgers are healthier than beef because bison do not store as much fat as cattle. Buffalo meat is low in fat and high in protein, and contains heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Buffalo burgers are also high in nutrients such as protein, zinc and vitamin B12. Buffalo meat tastes best when cooked medium rare. Instead of fries, have some vegetables (choose fibrous complex carbs) and a large green salad and be sure to hydrate. (Paper presented at American Stroke Association International Stroke Conference; The New York Times)