McDonald’s Brings Back Monster-Sized Soda

Note from Connie: Get ready for a SUGAR SHOCKER! As if people don’t drink enough soda as it is! This development is scary. Jennifer Moore fills you in on this jaw-dropping, sugary news.

Remember after Morgan Spurlock’s 2004 documentary "Super Size Me" was released — in which the filmmaker ate McDonald’s three meals a day and got super-sized portions of everything he could, the fast food giant ultimately (whether coincidental or not) dropped some super sized items from the menu?

Well, Andrew Martin of the New York Times reports that super size is back, in the form of a 42-ounce soft drink.

The marketing folks at McDonald’s have given the mega drink a new name — "the Hugo."

The new drink is inexpensive — 89 cents in some markets, according to Martin, and only 69 cents in Berkeley, California, according to renowned nutritionist Marion Nestle’s blog What to Eat.

At the moment, the Hugo is a summer promotion that isn’t on sale everywhere. But since a McDonald’s spokesperson told Martin that the Hugo is selling well, I wouldn’t be surprised if they decided to keep selling it after summer is over, and in more markets.

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Bush Pick for U.S. Surgeon General Vows to Fight Childhood Obesity and Advertising Sugary Cereals to Kids

Note from Connie: Ah, how we Americans need a take-charge person to spearhead some really aggressive, effective, anti-obesity measures and to take an active stance against advertising sugary cereals to innocent kids. So I invite you to read this intriguing blog post from my researcher/blog assistant Karen James about James W. Holsinger, Jr., M.D., Ph.D., President Bush’s nominee for U.S. Surgeon General. Of course, it should be noted that his nomination has encountered opposition due to claims that he’s hostile to gays, lesbians and transgender people. That’s a shame, because it would be awesome to have a surgeon general to help Americans slim down and become more healthy and to loosen the hold that sugary cereals have on them.

James_holsinger_0312_holsinger_healThere may be some good news on the dietary front coming down the pike if the U.S. Senate confirms James W. Holsinger, Jr., M.D., Ph.D., President Bush’s pick to become the next Surgeon General, according to a recent story in The New York Times by reporter Gardiner Harris.

In fact, Dr. Holsinger testified at his confirmation hearing that he would:

1) Support a ban on advertising sugary children’s cereals and

2) Make fighting childhood obesity one of his top three priorities as Surgeon General.

Following the recent disclosure by former Surgeon General Richard H. Carmona during a House oversight hearing that members of the Bush administration pressured him to weaken or quash public health information for political considerations (also reported by Harris in The Times), Dr. Holsinger said that he would resign from his position before bowing to similar pressure.

Well, given the considerable pressure of business interests against the regulation of children’s advertising–so considerable, in fact, that the Kellogg Co.’s agreement to stop advertising products containing more than 12 grams (3 tsp.) of sugar per serving to children under 12 spawned The Wall Street Journal’s  "Cereal Killer" anti-regulation editorial (subscription required) which we wrote about — we’ll be interested to see if Dr. Holsinger actually walks his talk if he becomes the 18th Surgeon General of the U.S.

By Karen James for the SUGAR SHOCK! Blog

Sugary Cereals Are Fine “Nutrition” for Kids, The Wall Street Journal Says

As you may have noticed, there is so much sugar news that this SUGAR SHOCK! Blog now has another talented researcher/contributor, Karen James. Here are Karen’s thoughts about sugary cereals.

I just have to respond to The Wall Street Journal’s editorial “Cereal Killer” (subscription required) that ran soon after the Kellogg Co. announced that it would stop marketing its cereals to children under 12 if they did not—or could not be reformulated to—contain 12 grams (3 tsp.) or less of sugar per serving.

I’m not sure whether the following statement is the ultimate expression of naïveté or denial:

"Sugared breakfast cereals aren’t the cause of obesity among children. They’ve been around for decades and are a source of nutrition for children who will find a way to sweeten plain corn flakes in any case."

Chock full of empty-calories, the refined sugars and culprit carbs in these products don’t belong in the same sentence with the word “nutrition.” Perhaps sugared cereals and other processed foods have been around for decades, but the fact that Americans have subsequently experienced epidemic rates of obesity and diabetes gives me pause to seriously question the Journal’s logic.

By Karen James for the SUGAR SHOCK! Blog