Friday, August 29, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

The 'worst restaurant meal in America'?

A consumer watchdog group singles out Long John Silver's Big Catch.

The 'worst restaurant meal in America'?

The watchdog group Center for Science in the Public Interest says Long John Silver's serves the least healthful meal in the United States.

CSPI cites the Big Catch meal -- which includes batter-fried haddock and hush puppies and onion rings on the side - and contends it has 33 grams of trans fat. The Los Angeles Times reported that that's more than two weeks' worth of the two-grams-per-day maximum recommended by the American Heart Association.

Long John Silver's - which has locations in West Berlin and Mantua, N.J., and in Lansdale - replied to CSPI's report: "Long John Silver’s Big Catch is a limited time only special that delivers tremendous value to value hungry consumers. The Big Catch can be paired with a variety of side items including corn, green beans, rice, cole slaw, fries, onion rings and hush puppies. The Big Catch is a wild-caught whitefish three times the size in weight of our normal uncooked whitefish. The Big Catch basket meal is offered at $4.99 and includes a choice of sides and delicious hushpuppies. Long John Silver’s offers a variety of meal choices including baked fish and shrimp that can satisfy almost every diner’s dietary choices. We stand behind our published food data and will review any requests from CSPI that raise questions about our data.

Trans fats (e.g. partially hydrogenated oils) have been linked to an increased risk of heart disease and stroke.

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The analysis of the Big Catch meal also disclosed that it contains 19 grams of saturated fat, 1,320 calories and nearly 3,700 milligrams of sodium, the Times reported.

It quoted Michael Jacobson of CSPI: "Long John Silver’s Big Catch meal deserves to be buried 20,000 leagues under the sea. Instead of the Big Catch, I’d call it America’s Deadliest Catch.”

CSPI notified the Food and Drug Administration of its findings and urged the agency to revoke its approval of partially hydrogenated oil altogether.

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