January 25, 2009

Breaking news: Milkshakes are bad for you!

Men's Health recently named a milkshake their number one worst food in their "The 20 Worst Foods in America 2009" list. What a waste.

Without a doubt, milkshakes are bad for you. With even less of a doubt, the 2,600 calorie Baskin Robbins Large Chocolate Oreo Shake that Men's Health picked is one of the worst milkshakes and, for that matter, foods out there. But there can't be many people who think milkshakes are good for you. Of those, it's a good bet none of them read Men's Health.

Most of us know we're hurting our bodies when we drink milkshakes. We still do it because all the physical harm is offset by spiritual benefits. While I haven't tasted the milkshake in question, if it soothes the soul, drinking it in moderation (as in once a year) isn't necessarily going to have a net unhealthy effect on you.

On the other hand the number one worst food should be something bad for the body that is also worthless to the spirit. A deep fried salad or triple-chocolate-chunk Brussels sprouts would make good candidates. Those would betray the eater by offering no tasting pleasure while still sabotaging your arteries.

Even something with a good taste and healthy reputation that is unexpectedly bad for you would be a better candidate for worst food -- like the 2,090 calorie Quizno's Tuna Melt Men's Health picked as the seventh worst food in the country. Subs have a reputation for being slightly healthier than other fast food and tuna is generally regarded as nutritious. Quizno's Tuna Melt, then, betrays our trust. Such treachery merits worst-food status far more than a milkshake that doesn't pretend to be healthy and whose only sin is that it is far worse for you than you expected.

Perhaps we'll get a more enlightening number one worst food next year from Men's Health, although I'm not hopeful since last year's number one was also a milkshake. Right now the list might be good enough for the pages of Men's Health, but it's not bringing this boy to their yard.

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