Potential Effects of the Next 100 Billion Hamburgers Sold by McDonald’s. (2005) American Journal of Preventive Medicine 28(4) :379-381
Background: McDonald’s has sold more than 100 billion beef-based hamburgers worldwide with a potentially considerable health impact. This paper explores whether there would be any advantages if the next 100 billion burgers were instead plant-based burgers.
Methods: Nutrient composition of the beef hamburger patty and the McVeggie burger patty were obtained from the McDonald’s website; sales data were obtained from the McDonald’s customer service.
Results: Consuming 100 billion McDonald’s beef burgers versus the same company’s McVeggie burgers would provide, approximately, on average, an additional 550 million pounds of saturated fat and 1.2 billion total pounds of fat, as well as 1 billion fewer pounds of fiber, 660 million fewer pounds of protein, and no difference in calories.
Conclusions: These data suggest that the McDonald’s new McVeggie burger represents a less harmful fast-food choice than the beef burger.