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Add Some Fat, Hold The Bun

A bunless there such a thing? According to KFC, there is. They’re rolling out two Double Down chicken-bacon-cheese-sauce filled meal options (one with grilled chicken, and one with breaded chicken) to please palates, especially of those people who want to or consciously like to skip bread or otherwise reduce their intake of foods rich in refined–or any–carbohydrates). These options can also satisfy those who are trying to keep their total calorie intake in check; the grilled version has 460 calories, and the breaded version has 540 calories.

If you’re only looking at calories (and of course KFC is one of many chain and fast food restaurants required to post calorie information on their menu boards), these new offerings may sound healthful. Although calories are, of course, important when it comes to weight management, they can also be deceiving; where those calories come from also matters, especially when it comes to your heart and overall health. These new KFC options deliver between 1/3 and 1/2 the total daily fat recommended for an American who consumes 2,000 calories a day (much of that fat coming from artery-clogging saturated fat). They also deliver almost a day’s worth of sodium.

If you know me, you know I firmly believe that no one needs to ban foods from their diet, and that even less than nutritionally stellar food options can be worked into an otherwise healthful, balanced diet. And I don’t like to point fingers at any one food or meal as a dietary villain (though I admit when I heard about this new KFC option, “death on a plate” was the first thought that popped into my head). But before you take a bite of either of these options, read between the lines–don’t just look at calories. They don’t tell the whole story.


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About The Author

Elisa Zied is a nationally recognized and award-winning health and nutrition expert, author, speaker, and spokesperson. A trusted source of food, nutrition, and health information, Elisa has garnered millions of media impressions, lending her expertise and real-world perspective to dozens of TV shows, web sites, news organizations and magazines. She’s the author of four nutrition books. An avid walker, she loves motivating others to #moveitorloseit. A book lover, she recently earned a certificate in children’s literature from Stony Brook Southampton and is currently working on several young adult novels. You can find her previous Food, Fitness & Fiction posts here and connect with her on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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