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Non-Tech : McDonalds (MCD)

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From: TimF1/30/2007 8:59:58 PM
   of 282
How bad is McDonald's?

Not as bad as some people say:

A Swedish researcher put 18 volunteers on the same diet that filmmaker Morgan Spurlock went on while filming "Super Size Me."

The result?

While one volunteer gained 15 percent body weight after following the high-choleric diet for a month, several others experienced only minimal weight gain. [He] was thus forced to conclude that "some people are just more susceptible to obesity than others."

Also: The 12 men and six women were banned from exercising.

While all gained weight, none reported mood swings or liver damage like Spurlock did in the movie.

Comments from Wired

Monday, 29 January 2007 - 1:06 PM
Name: PatHMV

Are you suggesting that Morgan Spurlock is a "researcher"? I agree that many assumptions must be tested (ulcers and h. pylori comes immediately to mind), even in the face of mountains of conventional wisdom otherwise.

But Spurlock is no "researcher". While he had doctors monitoring him during his 30-day McDonald's diet, a sample size of one does not constitute research. He's an attention-seeking filmmaker who had a good idea for a movie which would capture the public's interest.

Doing research aimed at testing conventional wisdom is a good thing. Hyping pseudo-science (or premilinary and incomplete results) as definitive proof of a hypothesis is a very bad thing and undermines public confidence in science and the scientific process.


Monday, 29 January 2007 - 1:52 PM
Name: David

My first thought after watching "Super Size Me" was, you know I haven't had a Big Mac in a while, need to run out and get one.

Second thought, Spurlock was a complete moron, with an agenda. Gee go from my normal diet A combined with regular exercise and an active lifestyle to totally different diet B cutting out all exercise and activity. You think there might be a change?

Plus I would really love to meet someone who truly only eats at MacDonald's breakfast, lunch and dinner.


Comments from Marginal Revolution

I railed against this film and what it supposedly proved when I had to watch it in a nutrition course. For one thing, any drastic change in diet--even when someone goes strict vegetarian--will result in physical changes that may make one feel dizzy, upset, etc.
Secondly, no one lives on MacDonalds for breakfast, lunch, and dinner every single day. You eat just apples all day for a month and see how you feel, and how traumatized your system is by the onslaught.

Posted by: susan at Jan 30, 2007 8:13:41 AM


It seems like McD's get the short end of the stick here; I want to see how much weight you put on eating at the local Chinese joint 3 meals a day and not exercising (or even better, at the French Laundry or some 3 Michelin star restaurant in Burgundy!). I'd bet the results would be even more drastic!

Posted by: cure at Jan 30, 2007 9:10:17 AM


It's also important to note that he ate over 5,000 calories a day. His maintanence level was likely between 2,000 and 3,000 (and without exercise I seriously doubt it
was 3,000). A recipe for nutritional disaster for most people.

Posted by: MDM at Jan 30, 2007 9:21:43 AM


Did anybody see the much less-hyped film made by a woman who ate all
meals at McD's for a month, but she kept to between 2K and 3K calories
per day, and she exercised? I don't remember the name of it, but she
didn't gain any weight and didn't have any adverse health effects. She
had her share of Big Macs and fries, but also ordered salads and the like.

Posted by: Mike at Jan 30, 2007 9:36:37 AM

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