Last week, I visited The Original Pancake House with a couple of friends. I had been to this specific location before and always had good food and pleasant service. I think our server this time was fairly new because she seemed a bit flustered, but she was nice otherwise. I preface my story with all of this because my intention is not to besmirch the restaurant or the waitress. I just think it was a combination of odd menu-writing and confusion.
While pouring over the menu, we noticed that it made the following guarantee about the “Heart Healthy” options:
“Less Than 650 Calories
Less Than 20 gm Total Fat
Less Than 7 gm Saturated Fat
Less Than 850 mg Sodium
Less Than 8 g Fiber”
Did you notice that last one? So apparently, I have been living a lie! All this time, I have been eating more than 35 g of fiber every stinkin’ day, thinking that it’s healthy. Had I not read this menu, I might still be slowly killing my heart with fiber. For shame! I have now switched to a heart healthy diet of less than .1 g of fiber per day. As an added bonus, I use less toilet paper.
Now that we have learned about the dangers of fiber, let’s look at “The Runner”. This meal has “[t]hick rolled oatmeal with raisins and sliced almonds, served with fresh fruit plus two turkey sausage links,” and “[f]or a heart-healthy option, please order without almonds.” This menu has been a lifesaver for me. Before I read it, I had no idea that turkey sausage is healthier than almonds. According to the USDA, 40 g of almonds has 2 grams of that bad for your heart fiber, 3 grams of protein without the added cholesterol you get with animal protein, and, here’s the kicker, it’s filled with “good” monounsaturated fats instead of the saturated fats found in turkey. On the other hand, 56 g of breakfast turkey sausage, has 2 g of saturated fat, 90 mg of that wonderful, heart-healthy cholesterol, and no fiber to accompany that 9 g of protein. Suck it almonds! It’s glorious low-carb, high protein, and high fat diets that keep your waist slim and your heart healthy. Just ask Dr. Robert Atkins!
The trifecta of learning was completed when I ordered “Eggs, Hash Browns and Toast” and the waitress said she would have to ask a co-worker, but she was sure that I could substitute oatmeal for eggs. Evelyn tried to order “The Runner” and substitute a non-meat item for the turkey sausage, but she was quickly shut down. The waitress said, “I’ve encountered this one before and I know that you can’t sub out the turkey sausage for anything else. You have to get the turkey sausage.” So Evelyn ordered the same that I did. Jane ordered a biscuit the size of a large fist and a bucket of gravy, you know, because she wanted a small meal.
Here’s to a heart healthy 2013 filled with cholesterol and sensible portions!