One of the first things people notice about Thai people is that they are generally far smaller than westerners, although with the amount of fast food outlets opening in Bangkok this might not hold true in a generation’s time.
Let’s take a look at the calorific impact of the most popular food chains that you find here. It may shock you out of eating it.
A donut so trendy that to order any less than five dozen would be just plain embarrassing. One of their famous glazed ring donuts contains 200 calories, which is 2,400kcal per dozen (a day’s worth of energy), with a trolley-load coming in at 28,800 calories. Their donuts contain trans fat, the worst kind for clogging up the arteries.
You don’t need a feature-length movie to show you that McDonalds is bad – finishing a burger and fries and experiencing the post-meal remorse and regret is usually enough proof. A Big Mac is a neat, processed package of 540kcal and 29g of fat, add another 500kcal for the large fries and 300kcal for the large Coke (most of the Coke’s calories are from about a day’s worth of sugar).
Coffee should be safe, right? Well, a lot depends on the type of milk used in the drink (skimmed milk has 0g fat but tastes awful). Watch out for the some of the Frappucinos which can be packed with cream and sugar and can contain upwards of 600 calories.
I was a bit upset to discover that my beloved cinnamon pretzel has about as much nutritional value as a bowl of toxic waste. It comes in at 470 calories with a whopping 84g of sugar. Not all that surprising when you consider that they are covered in sugar.
A piece of chicken contains between 300-500 pieces depending on size and type, so a bucket should contain enough calories to last a few days, with enough saturated fat for a week. Large fries and Coke add 800 odd calories.
All of Pizza Huts 14 inch pizzas contain about a whole day’s worth of calories, with one slice coming in at between 330 a slice (Veggie Lover’s) to 480 calories (Meat Lovers), with lashings of saturated fat and processed ingredients. Yummy!
Yes, I know it was a fad that no longer exists, but those buttery, sugary bun things had 600 calories each! It’s a well-known made-up fact that they suddenly went bust because all their customers died of heart attacks.
Of course, I’m not so patronizing that I don’t realize that you were fully aware that fast food in Bangkok is bad for you, but sometimes it’s good to have an idea of just how bad it is.
Any food can be consumed in moderation; as a treat. I follow this: when you do treat yourself, make sure it’s f***ing tasty! I think it’s utterly pointless eating something that’s bad for you unless it’s absolutely delicious – so when you do treat yourself, treat yourself well (and use it as inspiration to work that little bit harder next time you train, too).