Today's Rant: Kentucky Grilled Chicken?

Its been a few weeks since KFC released this ad campaign on their grilled chicken offering. Great timing too, considering Memorial Day is just over a week away. I thought it was great for KFC trying to do something healthy for a change, I mean they have to change with the times, right?

However how healthy is it for you really? After reading The Omnivore’s Dilemma, Michael Pollan goes into this whole explanation of how the grill marks are actually synthetic on most fast food chains chicken. Even their “fresh grilled” scent is merely a concoction of several corn products made to smell that way when its reheated.  I mean, its not like you will find a BBQ grill out in the back parking lot of your local McDonalds.

Below is a post from Bootcamp Instructor BJ Gaddour and he rants on this KFC Grilled Chicken, all I have to say is . . . MY SENTIMENTS EXACTLY!


By now, I am sure you have heard all about this new Kentucky Grilled Chicken.

And while I have no doubt that this is a better option than the fried chicken alternative, it’s still nowhere near an ideal food choice.


Congratulations! You are eating “grilled” chicken with a bunch of garbage on the side. Lord knows that mac and cheese and biscuits aren’t going help you look any better naked!

KFC says the grilled chicken has significantly fewer calories and fat, plus much less sodium, than its Original Recipe fried chicken that launched the brand more than a half-century ago.

After all, just as, if not more, damaging to our waistlines are the high calorie side dishes accompanying the chicken which are filled with refined starches and sugars and unnecessary amounts of saturated fat.

To me it’s like covering feces with a newspaper- it still stinks!

For too long now the fast food industry has made a killing on misinforming consumers about what is and isn’t healthy.

KFC claimed that it recently did switch cooking oils to eliminate all trans fats from their products- a noble effort indeed.

But upon further review, this does not look to be the case…

Here are the ingredients directly from their website:

KFC ® Grilled Chicken

Fresh Chicken Marinated with: Salt, Sodium Phosphate, and Monosodium Glutamate Seasoned with: Maltodextrin, Salt, Bleached Wheat lour, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean and Cottonseed Oil, Monosodium Glutamate, Spices, Palm Oil, Natural Flavor, Garlic Powder, Soy Sauce (Soybean, Wheat, Salt), Chicken Fat, Chicken Broth, Autolyzed Yeast, Beef Powder, Rendered Beef Fat, Extractives of Turmeric, Dehydrated Carrot, Onion Powder, and mot more than 2% Each of Calcium Silicate and Silicon Dioxide Added as Anticaking Agents.

Contains Wheat and Soy

I don’t know about you, but this certainly doesn’t sound like a nutritional powerhouse. First of all, “Partially Hydrogenated Soybean and Cottonseed Oil” is not good for you and is a form of trans fat.

Trans fats are synthetic fats that are essentially foreign agents in our bodies. There is truly no room for them in a healthy diet.

Plus, a great rule of thumb is that the fewer ingredients in a food item the better it is for you, ideally less than 5 ingredients being a good marker. Well, if you count the ingredients in this “health” food, there are well over 20!

Fast food and convenience store marketing campaigns make it very hard for us trainers to do our jobs.

When a company says:

“Our _____ (name of product) is good for you because it’s low in fat or fat-free”


“Our _____ (name of product) is good for you because it’s got no sugar”


“Our _____ (name of product) is the perfect snack because it’s only 100 calories.”

In general, here are some great user-friendly guidelines to cut through all of the BS these money-hungry SOB’s are sending our way:

Beware of “Fat-Free or Low Fat” Foods:

These food choices are often high in sugar or contain added sugar to make up for taste lost which wreak havoc on your energy levels and prevent fat loss.

Look Out for “Sugar-Free” Products:

These food choices are typically made with artificial ingredients and sweeteners and/or are sometimes higher in fat to make up for taste lost and/or often contains sugar-alcohols that tear up your digestive system.

Stay Away From “100 Calorie” Items:

These low calorie bags contain ZERO nutritional value with little to no protein and are low in fiber and natural, healthy fats. Plus, these weight-gainers by another name do not fill you up between meals.

Probably the most infamous “healthy” marketing campaign is 100-CALORIE SNACK PACKS.


Which is better for you body: 100 calories of broccoli or 100 calories of mini-muffins?


I know personally I could easily eat 10 of these packs without getting stuffed- I guess that would be a 1,000-CALORIE SNACK PACK ;)

Unfortunately, we live in a calorie-conscious society, and marketers truly take piggyback on this.

But you don’t need to be a dope like the rest of them.

Educate yourself.

Educate your friends.

Educate your family.

Remember, the market determines the direction companies will go. If we choose not to put this garbage in our bellies anymore, they will make less of it ;)

Hope this was helpful – Grill your own chicken instead, its the easiest thing in the world to do. All the summer BBQ’s are right around the corner!

Stay strong,


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