Wednesday, March 20, 2013

mcdonald's new egg mcmuffin: is 250 calories really better?

before i get going with this post, let me first say i'm not an all out mcdonald's hater. there are exactly three things i will eat and enjoy at mcdonald's: diet cokes, the southwest chicken salad (grilled) and egg mcmuffins. so i'm not a hater and being a self-proclaimed mcmuffin lover, i should be happy about the new mcdonald's 250 calorie egg mcmuffin with egg whites, right? a calorie counter's dream, right????

but i'm not excited and i won't be going through the drive thru to get one any time soon.

is 250 calories worth what's inside?
photo credit: cnn

here's why i'm not buying into the 250 calorie hype:

less calories doesn't mean better for you. it doesn't always mean something is instantly healthier or better for you. 

i shake my head at all the health gurus and diet stars that seemed to go gaga over this egg white egg mcmuffin (hungry girl, i'm talking about you!). take a look at the ingredients in the egg mcmuffin (note that this is the current egg mcmuffin, and not the egg white version, as it's not yet on mcdonald's website):

Egg McMuffin Ingredients:
English Muffin, Egg, Pasteurized Process American Cheese, Canadian Style Bacon, Liquid Margarine

only 5 things? that doesn't sound so bad, right? why am i getting my panties all in a bunch? because what you don't see immediately listed is all the ingredients that actually go into the above 5 ingredients. dig a little deeper into mcdonald's full ingredient list and you'll find the below in an egg mcmuffin:

1) English Muffin: - (Prepared with Liquid Margarine)
Enriched Flour (Bleached Wheat Flour, Malted Barley Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Water, Yeast, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Sugar, Wheat Gluten, Soybean Oil and/or Canola Oil, Contains 2% or Less: Salt, Calcium Sulfate, Calcium Carbonate, Citric Acid, Calcium Citrate, Yellow
Corn Flour, Corn Meal, Rice Flour, Barley Malt, Artificial Flavors, Natural Flavors (Botanical Source), Dough Conditioners (Ascorbic Acid, Azodicarbonamide, Datem,
Tricalcium Phosphate, Monocalcium Phosphate, Enzymes, Calcium Peroxide), Calcium Propionate And Potassium Sorbate (Preservatives), Soy Lecithin.

2) Egg: - (Prepared with Liquid Margarine)

USDA Grade A Eggs.

3) Pasteurized Process American Cheese:
Milk, Cream, Water, Cheese Culture, Sodium Citrate, Contains 2% or Less of: Salt, Citric Acid, Sodium Phosphate, Sorbic Acid (Preservative), Lactic Acid, Acetic
Acid, Enzymes, Sodium Pyrophosphate, Natural Flavor (Dairy Source), Color Added, Soy Lecithin (Added for Slice Separation).

4) Canadian Style Bacon:
Pork, Water, Sugar, Salt, Sodium Lactate, Sodium Phosphate, Natural Flavor, Sodium Diacetate And Sodium Nitrite (Preservatives).

5) Liquid Margarine:
Liquid Soybean Oil and Hydrogenated Cottonseed and Soybean Oils, Water, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Salt, Soy Lecithin, Mono and Diglycerides, Sodium
Benzoate and Potassium Sorbate (Preservatives), Artificial Flavor, Citric Acid, Vitamin A Palmitate, Beta Carotene (Color).

just look at all those ingredients that you can't pronounce. i'm thankful the egg is just plain old egg, even though it's cooked in whatever that liquid margarine crap is.

i'm no saint you guys - i eat these things every once 'n' awhile and i love them, but i just want people to think twice before they glorify a smaller calorie option thinking its automatically better or healthier. most of the time, a lot of artificial crap is used as a substitute to make a food "low cal" or "fat free" or "sugar free" and when you're stuffing your body with this stuff, you're not being any healthier than you were before!

so what do you think? are you loving the new egg white egg mcmuffin? do you care about all the other ingredients, within the ingredients? do you think i've spent an unnecessary amount of time on my soapbox with this post? ;)


  1. Liquid margarine. That just sounds wrong.

    And I love a McDonald's Diet Coke, too. Sometimes you just have to have one.

  2. Right? It sounds terrible and it seems to be a common cooking agent they use. At least we know Diet Coke is relatively "safe" across the board - can't put too much extra crap in that! :)

    1. Diet Coke is "safe" across the board? This article specifically points out that artificial crap being pumped into our food supply to give us the illusion that it's "better for you" when it's not a good thing in any way, and you idiots have the ignorance to call something that is sweetened with artificial CRAP, namely aspartame - a known neurotoxin and carcinogen - "safe" and say that you "love" it.. I'd love to pay for a slow, painful death.. and first perhaps I can wander out in the street in my underwear because I've lost my marbles due to all that aspartame and sucralose I ingested.. But hey.. They said it was "fine" to drink. Neh, I think I'd rather drink a fresh glass of juice and go out with some dignity. And wow, it took me a whole 5 minutes.

    2. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, and it sounds like its a good thing you got that off your chest.

      I think it depends on the context of what you mean, and what I mean, by "Relatively Safe." I don't mean that things like aspartame are safe and everyone should consume them in large quantities every day, but you do see all the ingredients listed in Diet Coke and from there can make an educated decision on whether or not to drink. The ingredients listed in Diet Coke aren't as many as those listed in the Egg McMuffin, which is why I said "Relatively Safe." Different context than the way I assume you were taking it.

      Juices can have many ingredients including fake sugars. So its important to check the labels there, too. Unless its not 100% juice, there's likely additives in there.

      If we want to be 100% safe, then we could say go with plain water, but even then it can be treated with chemicals.

      I think the most important point here is to be a smart consumer, know what you're drinking/eating, know the potential affects and go from there.

  3. Well said, too many people don't actually look at ingredients. It's sad. I've educated many friends and family members when they tell me, "but it's healthier and lower calorie." But look at the ingredient list - it has 100 items listed - who makes something in 100 ingredients? Really? Well said well said *applauds*

  4. Education is the hardest part! Cheap food usually wins out, regardless of health because the education on the value of what you're eating isn't there... That's another topic for another time, though!


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