Thursday, May 31, 2007

Health Check's Dietitians help make Boston Pizza's Menu Even Worse

So I received a very polite phone message yesterday from Boston Pizza.

I'm flattered to report that someone over there reads my blog and that they were kind enough to follow up with me to let me know that indeed, the nutritional breakdowns that I had provided in a previous blog on Boston Pizza's new Health Checked menu items were in fact not the newly revised ones agreed upon by the Heart and Stroke Foundation's Health Check and that the new ones were now posted online.

Excitedly I logged on to see the great work the Health Check folks' dietitians did with the Boston Pizza menus.

If you remember, my original concerns were twofold - I felt that Boston Pizza's Health Checked menu items were higher in Calories than they should be and more surprisingly given the Heart and Stroke Foundation's stance on sodium, that their salt content was through the roof.

To summarize the changes - the modified nutritional breakdown from the recipes agreed upon by the Heart and Stroke Foundations' Health Check Dietitians have actually made Boston Pizza's Health Checked items WORSE from a nutritional perspective!

Here's the jaw dropping breakdown:

  1. Lime and Parmesan Shrimp Skewers 190 Calories and 1020mg of sodium

    (300% more Calories and 30% more sodium in the new version)

  2. Garden Greens 130 Calories and 160mg of sodium

    (7% more sodium in the new version)

  3. Thai Chicken Wrap 570 Calories and 1260mg of sodium

    (ironically 1260mg of sodium is the exact amount of sodium that the Heart and Stroke Foundation recommends for a full day's consumption)

  4. Lemon Baked Salmon 430 Calories and 250mg of sodium

    (the only item to have improved)

  5. Pollo Pomodoro Spaghetti 520 Calories and 1060mg of sodium

    (18% more calories and 54% more sodium in the new version)

  6. Indy California Pizza 440 calories and 490mg of sodium

    (34% fewer calories, but 40% more sodium in the new version)
So to recap.

In my prior post I had held out hope that the nutritional values I posted were in fact inaccurate and simply had not yet been updated by Boston Pizza. I had held out hope that in fact the Health Check dietitians were able to help Boston Pizza devise recipes with fewer calories and less sodium, thereby making their Health Checked endorsed choices healthier. And while it has come to pass that my originally reported nutritional breakdowns were indeed older not yet updated versions, astoundingly, even to jaded old me, the nutritional breakdowns of the new Heart and Stroke Foundation Health Check approved menu items revealed that virtually every option was in fact dramatically less nutritious than the original Boston Pizza formulations on which I had reported.


If there are any readers out there working for Health Check, I'd love to hear how modifying Boston Pizza's recipes to increase their caloric and sodium content was a good health promoting idea and why it is that you're overtly endorsing the consumption of a full day's worth of sodium in one single meal?