Double Down a bet to make with care

It’s coming.

KFC announced its “Double Down” sandwich last week.  According to the countdown on their web site, we can all try out this meaty little bit of happiness on Monday.  And the self-appointed blowhards of the blogosphere are pointing at it as the latest sign of the nutritional apocalypse.

Double DownThose who are now having fun at KFC’s expense might be surprised to know the Double Down’s nutrition is comparable to the rest of its menu and the general offerings of the fast food world.  Certainly it’s neither the most caloric (a large Popcorn Chicken claims that prize) nor has the highest total fat (the Popcorn Chicken again).  Its lack of a bun does keep it out of the high-carb category.  And its total calorie count is actually the same as a McDonald’s Big Mac.  So as a single sandwich, the Double Down is probably not any worse for you than any other individual offering from the fast food chains.

Of course, that’s not to say it’s good for you.  It’s made of two chicken breasts, two pieces of bacon and two slices of cheese. At 540 calories and 32 grams of fat, this is not a sandwich you want to be eating every day.  A diet composed of Double Downs or food choices like it will likely lead to some pretty serious health problems.

So while you’re eagerly waiting for the Double Down’s arrival,  consider these three aspects of your diet and overall lifestyle.  This will allow you to experience the joy of consuming America’s newest and most meaty sandwich while not completely wrecking your overall health.

  1. There are things beside protein. The Double Down’s 53 grams of protein give you just about all the protein you need for a day.  Consider balancing your diet with an all-vegetable meal later in the day.  And yes, you will need to eat some bread — or some sort of complex carbohydrates.  The FDA’s recommended Daily Value for carbohydrates is 300 grams — and the Double Down will only give you 11.  Try having a bran muffin or oatmeal for breakfast.
  2. Go for a walk.  Better yet, several. You’ll need to walk for almost three hours to burn off the Double Down.  If you’ve only got an hour to exercise, you’ll need to be doing something pretty vigorous, such as playing basketball, climbing a stair treadmill or running at least five miles an hour.
  3. Cook something for yourself. One of the best ways to improve your diet is simply to cook your own food from fresh ingredients.  Processed and fast foods tend to be high in sodium, and The Double Down packs a whopping 1,380 milligrams of the stuff, easily over the adequate daily intake.

It’s not that you can’t have the occasional moment of joyous gluttony with a creation like the Double Down.  But if most of your diet looks like one, the Double Down is a bet you shouldn’t make.

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