Cafe Society

The Brits can't clean the Gulf, but they can clean up McNuggets

A recent CNN investigation uncovered a dirty little secret about the difference between Chicken McNuggets in this country and their British counterparts: BP may be polluting the Gulf, but the Brits are at least getting chemicals out of their food.

McNuggets in the USA were found to contain an "anti-foaming agent" used in silly putty, in addition to a petroleum-based preservative, tertiary butylhydroquinone, or TBHQ, which can lead to "nausea, vomiting, ringing in the ear, delirium, a sense of suffocation, and collapse" if you ingest even one gram -- but fortunately, it's limited to .02 percent of the oil in each meaty knuckle.

According to Lisa McComb, a global media relations specialist for McDonald's, the McNuggets are prepared different ways for different tastes. The U.S. nuggs are coated then cooked, whereas in the U.K, the little bites of bird are cooked, then coated with the spices -- which means the meat absorbs less oil and fat.

Marion Nestle, an NYU professor who's the author of What to Eat, says the two manmade chemicals in this country's McNuggets probably don't pose a health risk -- but adds, "as a rule of thumb, don't eat any food with an ingredient you can't pronounce."

There goes my sushi night.

KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Contact: weege