Fast Food In Hospitals? Say What?!

    A green apple wrapped around a stethoscope on a deskHospital cafeterias aren’t exactly filled with kale and whole grains, but with fast food?

    Chicken wings, quesadillas, hot dogs, sugar-filled cookies. Surprising as it is, it is not uncommon to find brands such as McDonalds, Pizza Hut, or Chick-fil-A available at various health institutions across the country. This decision is a questionable move on the part of hospital administrators, considering that high-calorie diets, due in part to fast food, are partially to blame for conditions such as diabetes. However, fast food restaurants continue to surface across the country and hospitals appear to be no exception.

    You may be asking yourself, what does a McDonald’s cheeseburger have any business doing in a hospital cafeteria? Well, an advocacy group, The Corporate Accountability International has been asking the same question. Recently they called out some hospitals in regard to sending mixed messages when it comes to health. The group sent nearly two dozen notices to hospitals throughout the country addressing their concerns, and the move was also endorsed by 2,000 health professionals.

    Fast food restaurants in hospitals are clearly a problem, said Susan Levin, a dietitian with the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.

    Levin led a 2011 review of food options at more than 100 major U.S. hospitals. She found that while the majority of hospitals surveyed didn’t contain a fast food restaurant, the report’s top five “worst hospital environments” all had at least one.

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