McDonald’s & Weight Watchers Team Up – Rebrand McNuggets, Fillet-O-Fish “Healthy Options”

1x1.trans McDonalds & Weight Watchers Team Up   Rebrand McNuggets, Fillet O Fish Healthy OptionsMcDonald’s has signed a deal with Weight Watchers to rebrand some of its FRIED meals as “healthy options”. Three McDonald’s meals including Chicken McNuggets, the Fillet-O-Fish sandwich, and their Sweet Chilli Seared Chicken Wrap, have been approved by Weight Watchers, and will be sold at McDonald’s outlets in New Zealand and Australia.

The Telegraph’s Bonnie Malkin reports that as part of the agreement, McDonald’s will use the Weight Watchers logo on its menu boards and Weight Watchers will promote McDonald’s food to dieters.

Calorie/Fat Breakdown on McDonald’s FRIED meals approved by Weight Watchers:
Fillet-O-Fish – 18g of fat and 380 calories
Chicken McNuggets – 29g of fat and 485 calories
Sweet Chilli Seared Chicken Wrap – 18.8g of fat and 404 calories

And while the chief executive of McDonald’s in New Zealand, Mark Hawthorne, laughingly characterized his company’s deal with Weight Watchers as a “noble cause”, a senior adviser for the Australian Obesity Policy Coalition aptly summed up this latest marketing fiasco in four simple words: It’s all about sales.

The director of business for Weight Watchers Australasia, Chris Stirk, said, “We would never have partnered with them if they had not gone on a significant journey of change” — referring to McDonald’s introduction of healthier menu options of salads and fruit.

But Stirk’s company is not endorsing McDonald’s salads and fruit, Weight Watchers is instead pimping McDonald’s FRIED meals as “healthy options“.

1x1.trans McDonalds & Weight Watchers Team Up   Rebrand McNuggets, Fillet O Fish Healthy OptionsNutritionists see the Weight Watchers deal for what it is: “a simple marketing ploy aimed at luring more customers into McDonald’s outlets.” Whatever credibility Weight Watchers may have had is now null and void — only hard core vanity mirror carrying sociopaths will be fooled by this absurd Weight Watchers ploy.

“It implies this food is healthy,” adviser Jane Martin said, “when often it is high in fat and salt. Chicken McNuggets are Chicken McNuggets whether its got Weight Watchers on it or not.”

Hawthorne, McDonald’s man in New Zealand and Australia, provided more of his carefully scripted propaganda to the Sydney Morning Herald: “We serve 1.5 million meals a week in New Zealand to 4 million people and we’re making every best effort to generate a change in behavior, to create an awareness in consumers about making healthy choices.”

McDonald’s unholy alliance with Weight Watchers is part of the fast-food chain’s attempt to pluck its unhealthy image from the public’s eye. In recent TV ads, McDonald’s also attempts to exploit the popularity of the “local food movement — a collaborative effort to build more locally based, self-reliant food economies” — by associating McDonald’s food with small local farmers.

In one ad you meet Frank Martinez, potato farmer, who sits in front of a mountainous pile of potatoes; he reaches for a single potato, cuts it open and tastes it. “They’re good now, just wait till they’re McDonald’s fries.”

Fried Verses Broiled

1x1.trans McDonalds & Weight Watchers Team Up   Rebrand McNuggets, Fillet O Fish Healthy OptionsMalkin points out that at 485 calories, 10 Chicken McNuggets makes up almost a third of the number of calories the average woman should consume in a day — 1,500 calories a day and men 2,000 — even when not on a diet.

Additionally, fried food has more calories from fat than food that is broiled or baked. One cup of fried chicken breast meat with the skin has 350 calories, including 160 calories from fat, compared to one cup of broiled, skinless chicken breast at 220 total calories, with only 43 of those calories being from fat.

And fried food has been linked to potential coronary artery atherosclerosis. In one study, eating just one serving of fried fish per week was linked to a 48% higher risk of heart failure, even after the researchers accounted for the participants’ overall diet (including french fries and other fried foods) and medical histories.

Chicken McNuggets Contain TBHQ & Anti-Foaming Agent

According to the 2004 documentary Super Size Me, McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets were originally made from old chickens no longer able to lay eggs. The chickens are ground up into a chicken mash, and combined with a variety of stabilizers and preservatives before being breaded, deep fried, freeze dried, and finally shipped to McDonald’s.

In other words Chicken McNuggets are fried and processed chicken meat. But there’s more: the so-called stabilizers and preservatives in McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets contain tertiary butylhydroquinone (TBHQ), a petroleum-based product, and dimethylpolysiloxane, an anti-foaming agent also used in Silly Putty.

The FDA claims the effective use of TBHQ is 1 gram per 5000 grams of cooking oil. The FDA said that TBHQ must not exceed 0.02 percent of its oil and fat content. According to A Consumer’s Dictionary of Food Additives, death has occurred from the ingestion of as little as 5 grams.

“Ingestion of a single gram (a thirtieth of an ounce) has caused nausea, vomiting, ringing in the ears, delirium, a sense of suffocation, and collapse. Industrial workers exposed to the vapors-without obvious systematic effects-suffered clouding of the eye lens. Application to the skin may cause allergic reactions.”

1x1.trans McDonalds & Weight Watchers Team Up   Rebrand McNuggets, Fillet O Fish Healthy Options
Inquisitive foodie with a professional investigative background and strong belief in the organic farm to table movement. Author of Bad Seeds: A FriendsEAT Guide to GMO's. Buy Now!
1x1.trans McDonalds & Weight Watchers Team Up   Rebrand McNuggets, Fillet O Fish Healthy Options
1x1.trans McDonalds & Weight Watchers Team Up   Rebrand McNuggets, Fillet O Fish Healthy Options

Latest posts by Spence Cooper (see all)


What is FriendsEAT?

FriendsEAT is an online social community for foodies. Our blog is the pulse of what's going on in the culinary community. Join the hundreds of thousands people following FriendsEAT.

Contact FriendsEAT:
us @

The Team

Follow FriendsEAT on


The opinions in this blog are the sole opinion of the authors and in no way reflect views of Binary Bits, LLC.