Hungry Man XXL Meals - Bigger Ain't Always
eDiets - The online diet, fitness, and healthy living resource
People... people... people... I hope you aren't
falling for the you-chomped-a-mouthful marketing trend of "EXCESS Is BEST!"
Lord, I know it's appealing. Just last week, as I stood in the checkout at the
local Wal-Mart Superstore,
I found myself coveting my neighbor's cart of
prepackaged foods. I'm talking about the new line of Swanson dinners... the
HUNGRY-MAN XXL entrees like the 1,000-calorie fried chicken colossus I now have
in my freezer.
Come on now... let's get real people. This line
of prepackaged meals is aimed at the pig in us. In addition to the huge XXL (as
in extra, extra large), the eye-catching blue and gold packages sport the
boast: 1 1/2 lbs. of food! If that ad copy doesn't hook you, just check out the
back of the box. Next to the image of a tight-shirted, finger-pointing guy is
the oversized quote: "I know what I like, and I like a lot of it." Forgive me
for providing you with one more memorable tagline: "It's Good To Be Full."
Ladies and gentlemen, I must ask... HAVE WE ALL
GONE MAD!? Seriously, there is a worldwide obesity epidemic. More than 6 out of
10 Americans are overweight. Spit out the food and repeat after me: WE ARE
EATING TOO MUCH!
OK... sorry... I don't want you to think I am
some sort of Food Nazi. Today's message: proper portion size. Swanson by no
means is the sole food manufacturer guilty of stuffing us with far too much of
what we want. I don't know about you, but I clearly recall the joy -- yes, joy
-- of getting my very own TV dinner way back in the early '70s. As one of seven
children, it seemed oh, so decadent to have my very own meal... a meal that
came in a nifty little aluminum tray. The original Swanson TV dinner packed no
more than 350 calories -- it was an oven-to-table dish that served up about a
third to a fourth of the calories you and I need over an average day.
Zoom ahead 25 years. These XXL versions of that
classic dinner are belly busters that'll sock you with nearly a full day's
worth of fat and calories AND more than one day's worth of salt! The
above-mentioned Southern Fried Boneless Chicken offering (a heavy
disappointment if you ask me due to its lack of corn or a dessert) has 1,010
calories, 41 grams of fat (8 saturated), 155mg cholesterol, a stunning 3,180mg
sodium, and 85 grams carbohydrates.
The XXL Roasted Carved Turkey sports 970
calories, 40 grams of fat (12 saturated), 105mg cholesterol, 3,600mg sodium and
106 grams of carbs.
The XXL Angus Beef Meatloaf has 860 calories, 48
grams of fat (20 saturated), 140mg cholesterol, 3,480mg sodium and 70grams of
The XXL line includes double helpings of
cheeseburger and meatball sandwiches. Eat just one of the two cheeseburgers and
you'll fill up on 730 calories, 43 grams of fat (17 saturated), 86mg
cholesterol, 1,450mg sodium and 56 grams of carbs. Each meatball sandwich
contains 640 calories, 33 grams of fat (11 saturated), 60mg cholesterol,
2,160mg sodium and 60 grams of carbs.
Swanson isn't alone in this quest to kill our
diets. Banquet, a company that boasts "America's #1 Frozen Brand (presumably of
turkey dinners), is hawking "Double The Meat" entrees in its new Hearty One
line of meals. The turkey ("mostly white meat") choice not only provides 17
ounces of food, but also 620 calories, 32 grams of fat (8 saturated), 80mg
cholesterol, 2,250mg sodium and 54 grams of carbs.
As a young man, I gobbled many a Banquet
boil-in-a-bag turkey and gravy dinners. Too many Hearty One meals will boil my
Banquet's boneless pork rib has 670 calories, 34
grams of fat (12 saturated), 105mg cholesterol, 1,790mg sodium and 57 grams of
The Salisbury steak selection oozes 630 calories,
40 grams of fat (15 saturated), 65mg cholesterol, 2,300mg sodium and 44 grams
In other words, The Hearty Ones are a banquet in
Do you want to learn more about proper portion
control and losing weight effectively?
Click here and give eDiets a look. I guarantee we will leave a
nice taste in your mouth and a not-so-full feeling in your belly!
WORST OF THE WORST FOODS
There are two snacks that I can think of that
isn't one of your everyday cravings. One, which I happen to like, is a slice of
rye bread with liverwurst, hot mustard, pickles and potato chips. TERRIBLE. The
other comes from an old friend of my grandma's. She would buy a bucket -- yes,
a bucket -- of lard and when she wanted a snack she would take a slice of bread
and spread that plain lard over the top... right out of the bucket!! And that's
it!! Into her mouth it goes...ACKKKKK!
My favorite breakfast every morning before going
to grade school was a bowl of grits smothered with apple sauce and then covered
with scrambled bulk breakfast sausage. YUM!! But my cousin took it one step
further. He covered his grits with grape jelly. YUCK!! What a difference the
An old friend's most favorite meal is pea soup
with canned peaches mixed in. Looks just like barf. Yum, yum!
My sister has two really nasty snacks she
indulges in. The first is a big helping on vanilla ice cream topped with
mustard. The second is vanilla ice cream mixed in with broccoli and cheese!
There used to be a truck stop near the
Alabama-Mississippi line called the Roadrunner. My Mother and I once stopped
there and each ordered an open-faced steak sandwich. We both gasped when the
waitress came out with two platters. Each "serving" consisted of two pieces of
Texas toast (toasted with butter, of course). On top of each piece of toast sat
a country-fried steak. These were surrounded by a nest of french fried potatoes
and the whole of it (fries included) were smothered with sautéed onions,
mushrooms and brown gravy. It tasted delicious but there were enough calories
there to sustain two Alaskan gold miners on a January day.
I am sorry to see that you gave in to the PC
crowd! Your article on the Mourning of Common Sense was a gem!! I will admit
that it was a little different to find it in the middle of the eDiets
newsletter, but it was a very pleasant surprise. To anyone who is offended, or
who can't see the glimmers of truth in this, I say, "Get a life!" The fact that
we have gotten to the point of large groups of people being "offended" and more
concerned about being "tolerant" is proof that Common Sense has truly died in
this country. A sorry state of affairs! Thank goodness I emailed this to
friends and made copies before you pulled it out of the newsletter.
After reading your column on the fad diets,
diet pills, etc. and rapid weight loss, I wanted to share a little info or
perhaps a warning of sorts. For all the readers that are taking diet pills that
result in rapid weight loss, beware. My father-in-law was recently ill with
pancreas-related problems. Although he is not dieting, he has lost 34 pounds in
a little over a month. His weight loss was a result of his illness and not
really eating due to food not tasting good, but it was still rapid weight loss.
Last week he went to the doctor for pain in his legs. The doctor explained that
after his severe and rapid weight loss, he has extreme nerve damage in one leg
and mild in the other. This condition is treatable thank goodness but
nonetheless, it is a very serious condition. Just wanted to warn everyone of a
side effect of rapid weight loss that is not mentioned very much. Thanks. I
enjoy your column very much.
It's about time people started discovering
these so-called meat analogs. Near this monastery in China (where meat was
traditionally banned) I had the best meal ever all using things like tofu,
vegetables, and even mushrooms as substitutes. I couldn't tell the difference
and it was definitely the most delicious meal I had.
LEAVE 'EM LAUGHING
A man rushes into a tavern and shouts to the
bartender, "Quick, pour me five shots of your finest scotch." The bartender
complies and the man gulps down the five shots in rapid succession. "Man,
that's the quickest I ever saw anyone drink," says the bartender. The patron
responds, "Well, if you had what I have you'd drink fast too." The bartender
says, "Omigod, what do you have?" The customer answers, "Fifty cents."
Lost on a rainy night, a nun stumbles across a
monastery and requests shelter there. Fortunately, she was just in time for
dinner and was treated to the best fish and chips she'd ever had. After dinner,
she goes into the kitchen to thank the chefs. She is met by two brothers. One
robe-wearing fellow proclaims: "Hello, I'm Brother Michael, and this is Brother
Charles." She notes, "I'm very pleased to meet you. I just wanted to thank you
for such a wonderful dinner. The fish and chips were the best I've ever tasted.
Out of curiosity, though, I wonder who cooked what?" Brother Charles replied,
"Well, I'm the fish friar." She turns the other brother and says, "Then you
must be...?" He butts in with, "Yes, I'm afraid I'm the chip monk."
in by reader Julie Ell
Until next week, the kitchen is closed. But if
you have any questions and/or comments -- or a tasteful joke to share -- feel
free to write me, eDiets editor-in-chief John McGran, at