Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Dr. Dean Ornish Shills for McDonald's?

I never thought I'd see the name Dean Ornish linked with McDonald's, but then I guess I'd never looked.

Sure enough, if you wander around McDonald's website there's a page by Dr. Ornish with tips on heart health.

Dr. Ornish, founder of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute, has made a name for himself promoting lifestyle change in the treatment and prevention of cardiovascular disease. One of the basic tenets of Dr. Ornish's work is the adoption of a diet extremely low in saturated fat.

Why then would Dr. Ornish lend his name to McDonald's?

Dr. Ornish, on his own site, advocates for diets that contain less than 10% of daily Calories from fat.

He notes in a talk available here, that by helping corporations steer customers to healthier choices, he's making a positive difference. He specifically cites the salads at McDonald's as being very beneficial.

Looking at the salads at McDonald's, depending on how you order them, many have as much fat as a quarter pounder and almost as many Calories.

In fact, order chicken in any of your salads, including the Asian salad he notes in the aforementioned talk, and you'll likely reach your entire day's Dean Ornish limit for fat intake.

Dr. Ornish also reports working with ConAgra (Kentucky Fried Chicken) and Pepsi Co.

I don't understand how Dr. Ornish is comfortable working for these corporations when without a doubt, he counsels his own patients not to eat there.

My guess?

Big Food has big pockets.