Home » Nutrition » Let’s Call A Spade A Spade

Let’s Call A Spade A Spade

O.M.G. Taco Bell is marketing a “drive thru” diet??

Please hold on while I throw up.

Those of you who read my blog (whether you eat fast food or not) are probably just as disturbed by this “diet”.  And anyone who is serious about nutrition already knows better than to take their diet advice from a fast food chain.   The problem is that the people who need to read this probably won’t…and the people who need this information most are people who probably aren’t serious about nutrition.  And with obesity climbing at an alarming height in America, this is scary.

There are so many things wrong with this, it is hard to know where to begin.  Here are the four biggest gripes I have with Taco Bell promoting anything as a diet:

  • Results not typical- The girl on the commercial says “Results are not typical but for me they worked.”  By not typical she means they won’t work for you.  And by you, I mean everyone.
  • The small print- If  you have super fast reading eyes you can catch their disclaimer on the commercial but you can also look on the Taco Bell website where it reads: “The Drive-Thru Diet is not a weight-loss program.  The Fresco menu can help people reduce their calories, but it is not a low-calorie food. (You don’t say!) For a healthier lifestyle, pay attention to total calorie and fat intake and regular excercise”  Now THAT’S the spirit Taco Bell!
  • Nutritional Value- They do not give you the nutritional value.  They are promoting their Fresco “healthy choices” but won’t list their nutritional value.  Um, lil fishy dontchathink??
  • Drive-Thru Oxymoron- In addition to calling fast-food a diet, they suggest the drive through (as opposed to, I don’t know…say, walking into).  I suppose this is the excersise program that goes with the diet.

When questioned about the validity of the “Drive-Thru Diet”, Tom Wagner, the VP of Taco Bell’s Consumer Insight had this to say: “We mean ‘Drive-Thru-Diet’ to be a noun, not a verb. It’s not intended to be marketed as a weight-loss program.”  So you call it a diet but don’t intend for it to be marketed as a weight-loss program.  Ah, semantics.

So basically, the drive through diet is not a diet at all. This is just the corporate world playing off of people’s fears about their weight; promoting  products as ‘healthy’ when in reality, they’re anything but.  I made a choice long before I even got into fitness and nutrition to not eat fast food.  I do not like how it makes me feel.  And I would not recommend it to anyone.  But if you have a fast food meal every once in a while, and for the most part make healthy choices, you’ll be fine.  It doesn’t have to be black and white.   Just don’t kid yourself that you can eat this stuff regularly and your overall health won’t suffer.

What do you consider “fast food” and do you eat it?

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20 thoughts on “Let’s Call A Spade A Spade

  1. I haven’t really eaten much fast food for many years. I do eat “fast casual” type food on occasion (Pei Wei, Panera) but I don’t eat it all the time. But you’re totally right, ANYTHING can be eaten in moderation. I used to be really bad at labeling foods as “good” or “bad”. I’m not all the way past that, but I’m trying to avoid that because I get tired of people using these terms in conjunction with negative self-talk. That type of attitude is almost encouraged in our society, we’re all supposed to be on a diet of sorts, and that’s just sad. That concept seems to pick up in intensity each year, but the country seems to get more overweight the more we focus on issues like that.

    However, I haven’t even eaten at Taco Bell in years. Mainly stemming from a really gross incident; I found a fingernail in my taco. NASTY!

    Boy… you always bring up topics that make me nearly hijack your blog with my lengthy commenting! 🙂

  2. When I first saw that commercial I about died! I got so excited it wasn’t even funny because my disgusting boyfriend eats TB every Friday in a time honored tradition dating back many years. I was like, guess what, you’ve been doing it right all these years!!! LMAO!

    But seriously… I can’t believe they are marketing this ish and sadly there are going to be people out there that think it will work.

  3. The problem is the use of the word diet which should be defined as “lifestyle eating plan” but diet is commonly used to mean “a restriction in one’s food or caloric comsumption”. This blurrs the preconception of the public allowing them to think that Taco Bell is offering a healthier option. Easy for them to think that when Americans already seem to want to be over weight when the answer is simple. Eat less. Move more. Period.

    Thanks for letting me vent. This is a hot issue for me too!

  4. Shelly, I get it. I could go on and on and trust me, I too believe that people should eliminate the word diet! And a post on that is coming soon!

  5. the only “fast food” i eat is stuff i cook for myself in teh microwave 🙂 i haven’t had true fast food (i count the big chains- mcds, wendys, taco bell, kfc, etc) in years!! if i find myself there, b/c i’m babysitting or something, i either get nothing or a coffee or something.

  6. I read about this somwhere else and was appalled. The sad thing is there are people who just don’t get it and really will think they are eating healthy by eating this stuff. I can’t stand Taco Bell or any other similar fast food . . .

  7. LOL. When I saw this commercial I was laughing so hard! I thought it was a joke. Is it for real?

    I think it is appalling that they don’t show their nutritional info online! That makes me crazy!

    I cannot eat much fast food because it is not vegan. I did have Panera today. Does that count?

    (P.S. In your “Results Not Typical” section you forgot the word “not” in the quote, just letting you know! LOL, Steven read my post today and pointed out a bunch of errors. Doh!)

  8. What bothers me most are the people who will now rationalize that they are feeding their children in a healthy fashion. Or worse yet, the people who will honestly believe this is good for their kids.

    As long as fast food prices are so cheap, Taco Bell and others will always be able to con people into thinking it’s a less expensive – and now healthy – way to eat… especially people who so desperately want to believe.

    Giving up fast food years ago was the single best nutritional thing I’ve ever done for myself.

  9. Fast food is the opposite of Slow Food as in http://www.slowfood.com/ and in the U.S, http://www.slowfoodusa.org/. Clean, healthy eating that is sustainable with a commitment to community and environment…. So glad you asked! 🙂

    Do I eat fast food? The occasional Chick-fil-A fills the void, but a kid’s meal and only half of that!

    As for Taco Bell, so 3:00 am drive-through visits aren’t a good idea??? 🙂 I’m just askin’…….

  10. If taco bell is like Mac Donalds I don’t believe anything they call a diet product.
    At the mac they started serving salads a few years ago, okay salads are good but the dressing they serve with it is big and not low-fat and everybody uses all of the dressing so goodbey healthy salad.

    I think we visit the Mac once or twice a year. We’re both no big fans of fast food (thank God for that 🙂 )

  11. I consider fast food any small restaraunt that sells food in a fast fashion… and no, I don’t usually eat fast food. If I do, once in a blue moon, I try to find something more healthy, if at all possible.

  12. Isn’t this nuts? when I first saw the ads, I almost died. You have to be kidding me that people will actually fall for this. It’s really sad that the food industry does this to the consumer.

  13. i haven’t seen this commercial but they are smarties for pushing a “healthy” option to all the nimnods out there.

    i can’t eat 99% of fast food (allergies). all i can order is a boring, dressing-less salad.

  14. I seriously thought this was some kinda sick joke when I 1st saw the commercial. Jeez, what a way to confuse people in an already confusing world of nutrition and dieting. (And from the same place that encourages a late-night fourth meal?!)

    I consider “fast food” anything you can get at a drive thru like burgers, chicken, tacos, etc. I eat it sometimes-usually limited to traveling on the road. I like it sometimes, but most of the time I’d really rather have something more substantial than something with fries.

  15. Pingback: The Seven Links Post « Finishing is Winning

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