health

Calorie Kings: Baby Boomer Beware -- That Old Metabolism
Ain't What It Used to Be

Warning: Just Reading This Will Cause Weight Gain.

cheese friesIf you visited the North Carolina State Fair last October, there was a new delectable on the official menu: the Krispy Kream Hamburger, consisting of a 1/2-pound beef patty with cheese and bacon between 2 glazed donuts. OMG.

This culinary monster has been making the rounds recently at ballparks and State Fairs. Vendors at the South Carolina extravaganza report that while sharing is common, some people eat 2 or 3 a day on their own. Calorie count: 1000 (each).

Amidst a national obsession with obesity—with middle-aged baby boomers leading the blooming onionparade—let’s remember it’s long-term bad habits that create bulging bellies and thunder thighs. Practice moderation and you can still enjoy that occasional binge. But instead of just dipping your toes in Lake Indulgence, you might as well plunge in “mouth first.”

For those who live in the San Francisco Bay Area, there’s Ike’s Place, criticized by neighbors for long lines and munching crowds.

The tiny take-out restaurant, with an eclectic clientele from teeny boomers to aging boomers, has a shamelessly caloric menu, the king of which is the Kryptonite Sandwich Meal containing 5 different meats, 2 whole avocados and secret sauce, with deep fried mozzarella sticks and jalapeño peppers on the side: 4800 calories. OMG. OMG. That should hold the average person for two days.

It’s hard to match that. Here are some of the “Best of the Worst” border nachospop culture goodies available at an establishment near you. Surprisingly, the most caloric single-item plates don’t come from the usual suspects—the best-known fast food franchises. Begin salivating for these grab-life-by-the-lard one-item pleasures, all weighing in over 2000 calories, the number nutritionists recommend daily for a healthy weight.

The Magnificent Seven

Outback Steakhouse: Aussie Cheese Fries with Ranch Dressing. 2900 calories.

On the Border: Stacked Border Nachos with Melted Cheese. 2740 calories.

Chili’s: Awesome Onion Blossom, battered and deep-fried, served with a special dipping sauce. May not be available at all locations. 2710 calories.

Macaroni Grill: Spaghetti and Meatballs with Meat Sauce. 2430 calories.

Uno Chicago Grill: Chicago Classic Deep Dish Pizza, personal size. 2310 calories.

On the Border: Double XX Fish Tacos with three fresh flour tortillas stuffed with Dos XX beer-battered fish, creamy red chili sauce, shredded cabbage, cheese and pico de gallo. 2100 calories.

Chili’s: Honey Chipolte Chicken Crispers with Chipolte Sauce. 2040 calories.

These treats make McDonald’s Big Mac at 540 calories look like a Weight Watchers meal. The highest count for a single item on the Big Arch menu is a “mere” 770 calories – its Angus Mushroom and Cheese.

Even the Kentucky Fried Chicken “Double Down Sandwich,” boasting 2 deep-fried chicken filets (in place of buns), two pieces of bacon, two melted cheese slices plus the Colonel’s secret sauce, will set you back only 540 calories.

So, remember: Moderation in all things, except moderation. Bon appetite and see you at the gym. Or not.

Terry Hamburg writes the Boomer to You blog about the exciting and revolutionary baby boomer years.

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