This week got off to an interesting start on the health front.
The issues of prescription drug abuse and medical malpractice resurfaced when the Los Angeles Coroner released the official cause of Michael Jackson's death and classified it as a homicide. And the burden of obesity got heavier when KFC confirmed that it is testing a new product in two states that, when consumed with abandon, has the potential of being as deadly as the drugs that the King of Pop used to "get to heaven."
Bread, the foundational ingredient of a sandwich, is replaced in the Double Down with two fried chicken fillets and includes two strips of bacon; two slices of cheese (pepper jack and swiss); and a special mayo-based sauce that is named after the jolly-looking Colonel, who would be experiencing heart palpitations if he tried this sandwich.
People are saying that this is a publicity stunt and that KFC will not in good conscience sell you a high-calorie; high-fat; high-cholesterol; high-sodium; and high-priced ($6.99) chicken sandwich. Let us hope so because the last thing that we need is to find ourselves wallowing in the lows of obesity side effects after riding the highs of eating this beast of a sandwich.
Obesity is a $147 billion healthcare crises in this country. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention keeps track of obesity trends and found a dramatic increase in our body mass index, fatness and weight between 1985 and 2008. Only one state, Colorado, has an obesity rate of less than 20 percent. Mississippi has the highest rate with nearly 33 percent of its population being obese. We all know that people of color are disproportionately effected by most health epidemics and obesity is no exception. The prevalence of obesity among blacks (51 percent) and hispanics (21 percent) is higher than what is present among whites.
So I guess you want to know the connection between MJ's personal physician, Conrad Murray, MD and KFC? Two words: negligent homicide.
I know that reads dramatic. I do not believe that Dr. Murray intended to kill the King of Pop (as is alleged) when he administered lethal doses of propofol (anesthetic), valium (sedative) and lorazepam (sedative) to MJ in an effort to help him sleep. I am also certain that KFC does not plan to take you out by putting you at risk for obesity and other related illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease and arthritis with its Double Down sandwich. Unfortunately the actions of KFC, like those of Dr. Murray, may have consequences beyond their intent...you may die.
So here is my advice to you: Stay away from the KFC Double Down Chicken Sandwich. Do not organize any taste test trips to Rhode Island or Nebraska. Do not mobilize your Facebook, Twitter or real-life friends in re-post, tweet or e-mail campaigns in support of this sandwich. You will make us both sick if you do!