Arby’s May “Have The Meat”, But Should You Eat It?

Arby's We've Got the Meat

Arby’s has launched a new campaign – “We have the meats”, and is using closeup shots of processed meats and sandwiches to entice consumers to eat up:

“Available in Arby’s restaurants throughout the month of August, the new protein-packed Mega Meat Stacks, include:

Triple Stack – turkey, roast beef, pepper bacon, lettuce, tomato and mayo on honey wheat bread”

Let’s take a look under the hood shall we?

It’s a big sandwich – 392 grams. Arby’s does not specify the weight in ounces for some reason. Is this Europe? Anyhow, divide by 30 to get approximately a 13 ounce portion.

The calorie count is close to breaking into 4 digit territory, clocking in at 910 calories! The saturated fat count is 11 grams, or 55% of the maximum daily recommended allowance.

The sodium level in this single sandwich is a whopping 2690mg, or 116% of the recommendation for an entire day’s worth of salt consumption!

Hey, on the bright side there are some veggies added – lettuce and tomato.

OK, let’s turn our attention to the ingredient list. This is not an easy task, as the fast food chain lists the “ingredients” for this sandwich as follows:

Roast Beef, Roast Turkey, Pepper Bacon, Mayonnaise, Tomatoes, Leaf Lettuce, Honey Wheat Bread.

You then need to look up each of the above ingredients to see that it is actually composed of a multitude of sub-ingredients. Mashing up the lists gives this work of art:

Beef, Water, Salt, Sodium Phosphates; Turkey Breast, Turkey Broth, Contains 2% or
less of the following: Salt, Brown Sugar, Modified Food Starch, Dextrose, Sodium Phosphate. Browned in Soybean Oil; Pork cured with: Water, Salt, Sugar, Smoke Flavoring, Sodium Phosphate, Sodium Erythorbate, Sodium Nitrite. Coated with Ground Black Pepper and Sugar; Soybean Oil, Water, Egg Yolk, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Distilled Vinegar, Salt, Cider Vinegar, Sugar, Lemon Juice Concentrate, Spice, Onion (dehydrated), Garlic (dehydrated), Natural Flavor, Calcium Disodium EDTA (to protect flavor); Tomatoes; Leaf Lettuce; Enriched Flour (wheat flour, malted barley flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), Water, Cracked Wheat, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Honey, Yeast, Soybean Oil, Contains 2% or less of the following: Salt, Wheat Gluten, Calcium Sulfate, Corn Syrup, Barley Malt Extract, DATEM, Calcium Stearoyl Lactylate, Mono and Diglycerides, Modified Corn Starch, Enzymes, L-cysteine, Sodium Alginate, Soy Lecithin, Polysorbate 60, Azodicarbonamide, Potassium Iodate, Citric Acid, Ascorbic Acid, Caramel Color, Calcium Propionate (preservative). CONTAINS: EGG,SOY, WHEAT

For your convenience we have marked in bold some of the problematic ingredients. Highlights:

  • When cooked or broken down in the stomach, nitrites form nitrosamines (also called N-Nitroso Compund), which can cause cancer in young children and pregnant women.
  • Calcium Disodium EDTA - A preservative with a mildly salty taste. Unfortunately, it may cause kidney damage, and blood in urine.
  • Europe and Australia ban the use of azodicarbonamide because it is a “respiratory sensitizer” that can cause asthmatic and other allergic reaction. In Singapore, the use of azodicarbonamide in food products can lead to a lengthy jail sentence.

Does Arby’s commercial look so appetizing now?

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  • Marqus Gant

    ‘Kay, why is the US the only place on the planet where the government approves all of these chemicals to be used in our foods? As a matter of fact, you would think with our cultural standing in the world, we wouldn’t allow this to happen. Taking the cheap way out by lacing food with a potential poison because it extends the shelf life or makes the food taste great?

    I’ve always known that the government could give two squirts about me, but isn’t this illegal? Like knowing something that can cause bodily harm, but yet and still, you move along with it anyways?

    We desperately need a food revolution – - like yesterday.

  • Marqus Gant

    My philosophy is if I can’t pronounce the things in the ingredient list, I won’t eat it.

    • vroomvsr

      That’s actually not always a good philosophy.
      There are healthy ingredients that people can’t pronounce

      • MooMoo

        Such as?

  • mfp142

    I, for one, have grown TIRED and ANGRY over this constant battle to find healthy food and clean water. In many ways, if you want those two things you must live like a pioneer, hunting gathering and growing for yourself. I don’t mind living that way, I have for years. But it sure would be nice to go out to eat every once in awhile and not be POISONED.

  • Cactus_Wren

    You couldn’t pay me to eat at Arby’s anyway. Their food is all sort of … squishy, textureless, and the meats taste primarily of salt.

  • timlockk

    No, thank you.

  • Laura

    Are the last two bolded ingredients you discussed in the bun????