Nutrition Action Healthletter
April 1998 — U.S. Edition

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New Wanna-Beef

Remember the wonderful taste of a juicy hamburger on a bun piled high with lettuce, tomato, and onion?

Remember the saturated fat and the E. coli bacteria that could be hiding inside?

You can keep the taste but forget the worries with Gardenburger Hamburger Style or Hamburger Style with Cheese soy patties.

Okay. So they're not exactly like beef.  But they're close enough to give your tastebuds a thrill. 

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And the numbers will give your blood vessels a thrill.  A cheese-free Gardenburger has 90 calories and no fat.   The with-cheese version has 110 calories and 2 and half grams of fat (just 1 and a half of them saturated).

The same-size burger made with typical "lean" ground beef will set you back 13 grams of fat, five of them saturated.  And you'll get no fiber or phytochemicals to cut the risk of cancer.

The new Gardenburgers' sodium (about 380 milligrams per patty) is higher than fellow wanna-beef Boca Burgers (about 300 mg). And the taste is a little less beef-like.

If imitating beef isn't your thing, try Original Gardenburgers.  They're mostly made of mushrooms, brown rice, onions, low-fat cheese, and rolled oats, and they taste delicious in their own right.

Boca Burger -- (954) 524-1977 Gardenburger -- (800) 636-0109

Coronary King

After two years in the kitchen, the geniuses at Burger King have come up with a new kind of french fries.  And your local hospital ought to name its cardiac care unit in their honor.

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"The taste that beat McDonald's fries," goes Burger King's ad blitz.  "The saturated fat and sodium that make McDonald's fries look good," would be more like it.

Thanks to the salty coating that allows more oil to be absorbed, a king size order of BK's new fries packs 590 calories and 30 grams of fat -- 12 of them saturated. McDonald's super size fries have 26 grams -- 4 and a half of them saturated.  And both are fried in trans-laden shortening, which boosts the sat fat numbers ... and the fries' threat to your heart.

Worse yet, BK's fries -- its most popular item -- have a whopping 1,110 of sodium (McDonald's has 350 mg).

How nice of Burger King to pack the sat fat equivalent of a Whopper into a side dish.

Let's see.  In November BK introduces the Big King, one of the worst burgers you can buy.  In January it introduces  some of the worst fries.

The next time you're stuck choosing among fast food restaurants, remember: Anything's better than Burger King.

Burger King -- (305) 378-3535

Nutrition Action Healthletter