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May 30, 2001

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June NAH 2001
(Right Stuff vs. Food Porn)

  Carrot Cake on Steroids
Cheesecake Factory Carrot Cake: ONE SERVING = 1,560 CALORIES

WASHINGTON - A dessert that has three-quarters of a day’s worth of calories? Not exactly a piece of cake for those trying to watch their waistlines. The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) has named The Cheesecake Factory’s Carrot Cake as its Food Porn of the Month for June, for having 1,560 calories and 84 grams of fat, 23 of them saturated, in one slice. The average adult consumes about 2,000 calories in an entire day and according to government guidelines should not consume more than 65 grams of fat and 20 grams of saturated fat.

     It’s not just the ingredients that make the carrot cake a hip-hugger — what with its corn oil, cream cheese, eggs, butter, palm kernel oil, butterfat, and hydrogenated palm oil. It’s also the sheer size of the slice: six inches high and almost one pound. One slice is the saturated fat and calorie equivalent of three McDonald’s Quarter Pounders.

     “Some people are misled into thinking the carrot cake is healthful because it contains carrots,” said Jayne Hurley, a CSPI senior nutritionist. “But this is a fat-and-calorie bombshell that even a carrot-loving bunny would reject.”

     “This isn’t just carrot cake, it’s carrot cake on steroids,” added Hurley. “Not even a full meal should pack this one-two punch of calories and saturated fat.”

     Some of The Cheesecake Factory’s other desserts, such as Black Out, Amy’s Fudge, and Fabulous Chocolate Mousse, are in the same ballpark (the one with oversize seats, that is) as the carrot cake. A slice of each has approximately 1,400 calories. That makes a slice of the Original Cheesecake, at “only” 710 calories, look like a bargain.