Ahhh the sights, sounds and smells of summer are here. The magnolias are blossoming, birds chirping while the coif of fresh cut grass abounds, ahhh. Nothing can be finer, truly. I shared a tweet with my better half of a picture of the cartoon Snoopy enjoying an iced cream cone treat, mmmmm. It got me contemplating a visit to MooLix in Kelowna for a scoop and an evening stroll beside Lake Okanagan sometime soon. I don’t know about you, but I’ve seen my share of DQ and Blizzard commercials, haven’t you? I decided to check out their promos like I did last year in my Summertime Scoop post to see how special these specials really are…. Awareness is bliss when discovering the nutritional value of those seasonal treats to cool off by!
Want a Blizzard? Let Hell Freeze Over First!
My fingers did the walking through the cesspool of nutritional data finding delectable choices such as Peanut Butter and Brownie Cookie Dough, Cotton Candy and Salted Carmel Truffle aka the PMS Buster. Hmmm, my dietitian antenna go up with anything served in a super duper sized cup with a spoon that stands on end. Put these benchmark nutritional requirements for an average male/day in your bonnet to compare what I found: 2,100 calories, 13gm saturated fat, 6-12 tsp sugar and 2,400mg sodium.
I sleuthed through the numbers for the large portion of the selections, so play along with me won’t you with some examples:
Brownie Cookie Dough Blizzard – 1510 calories; 63gm fat (14 tsp); 138gm sugar (35 cubes)
Note that the so called PMS Buster has 750mg sodium, so if you were retaining fluid before you gobbled this goblet of goo down you won’t be able to remove your rings until a week Sunday. Awareness is bliss alright and menu labelling would probably stop you in your tracks if you saw these numbers BEFORE you purchased. DQ is doubling down and promoting their buy one get one free to boot, good grief. Save yourself the sugar rush and think this through. With the winter we experienced who even wants to think about blizzards? If you’re looking to cool off take a jump in the lake instead!
The “Not So Special”, Special – Walk 20 Miles to Burn it Off
My attention turned to their summer “not so special”, lunchtime special, hmmm. This combo of doom includes a bacon cheeseburger, fries, 21oz drink and a sundae that can be swapped for a small Blizzard for a buck extra, oh joy. My calculations included a regular soda pop plus the dessert swap:
1,990 calories; 75gm fat (17 tsp); 198gm sugar (50 cubes); 2,090mg sodium
Oh my achy breaky heart! You can build the Wall of China with all of those sugar cubes. How much money are you saving on this “not so special”, special? The numbers hit the stratosphere when compared to those benchmarks for daily intake noted above. If you wanted to burn this lunchtime letdown off you’d need to take a 20 mile walk which is a 7 hour stroll. Now I need some air…
Sink With this Drink!
Then I surfed through the Julius bevys with fruity and refreshing sounding names of Triple Berry to Strawberry Kiwi or Pina Colada. What can be wrong with any of these? Well, everything, that’s what! In one large serving of the Pina Colada here’s what you get:
760 calories; 151gm sugar (38 cubes)
That big gulp will put a lump in your throat among other places. I can hear the honey bees buzzing over now to get at this one with their honey bee noses smudged up against the DQ window! These numbers are far from refreshing so save your money. What began as a humorous little exercise is no longer funny.
Test, Test, Time to Do the Eating Satisfaction Test
I refer to myself as a “non finger waging dietitian” folks and suggest you make decisions for yourself. Begin with my Awareness is Bliss exercise that I describe in my ebook Skinny on Slim the Little Black Dress of Diet Books and gain a better understanding of what’s in your food by knowing what the nutritional numbers are before you choose. You will do better when you know better. That $5 lunch special provided more than my nutritional requirements for energy in 1 day and is “not so special” after all. Take my Eating Satisfaction Test described after Halloween where you hone in on how your food choice made you feel 1 hour after consuming it. I’d wager that after that Blizzard choice you’d be reaching for Tums and a soft comfy cushion to nap like Dilbert feeling the afternoon slump in spades not to mention indigestion. You are not experiencing joy from eating, but misery. Find joy people.
When I say all foods fit I mean a snack sized morsel, once in a while, such as 1-2 small treats each week – sit, savour and enjoy then forget about it. There are many summertime joys and savouring a simple ice cream cone can be one of them. Remember, there’s more to life than stuffing your face!