Stacey Irving is an extraordinary girl with an unusual diet. The 17-year old girl has lived on a diet of nothing but chicken nuggets from popular fast food chain McDonald’s. So it should come as no surprise that Irving had to be hospitalized one day after collapsing with difficulty breathing. Chalk it up to the unhealthy eating regimen Irving has had over the last 15 years.
Fifteen Years of Nuggets
20 chicken nuggets per meal every day for the last 15 years Click To Tweet
Stacey Irving has feasted off chicken nuggets and a side order of fries since she was a toddler. The factory worker claimed she has never tasted any vegetable or fruit in her whole life. The 17-year old resident of Castle Vale, Birmingham has admitted to occasionally eating junk food such as crisps or toast for breakfast. For the most part, Stacey ate about 20 chicken nuggets per meal every day for the last 15 years. She shares some of it with her boyfriend. (She has tried other chicken nugget brands such as KFC or those from the supermarket.)
Doctors have warned the teenager about the possible health effects of what her diet brings. They have warned her about dire consequences if she doesn’t change her unhealthy eating ways. When she was admitted to the hospital, attending doctors found the veins of the 17-year old’s tongue was inflamed and that she was suffering from anemia. The chicken nugget addiction has left her devoid of any nutrient in her body. She has been given the necessary vitamins and minerals via injection since then. After the collapse, Stacey has concluded that her diet of chicken nuggets was the one responsible for the anemic condition and vitamin deficiency.
Contrary to what you might think, chicken nuggets are not a source of iron. Lack of iron in one’s diet leads to a downward spiral which eventually leads to severe anemia. Stacey recalls how her mom first took her to the nearest McDonald’s when she was two. She was handed a nugget, tasted it, and never looked back since. Stacey claims that she loved the food so much that she decided it was the one thing she would only eat. She turned her back on the entire food pyramid. Her mother tried introducing healthier alternatives, but have long since given up when the teenager stubbornly refused. Maybe now she will change her diet for the better, but the bigger question is, how you change your whole diet if you’ve been eating poorly your entire life?
Chicken Nuggets: A Health Timebomb?
One serving of 20-piece chicken nuggets contains 926 calories and 58 grams of fat. The daily limit for fat is at 56g, and one serving of the food is already half of the recommended daily allowance for most adults at 2000 calories. Moreover, a diet solely consisting of fries and chicken nuggets will expose the individual to excessive amounts of salt and fat. One must have antioxidants, fiber, calcium and other essential nutrients to maintain a healthy lifestyle. A monotonous and unhealthy diet eventually leads to severe health issues and also exposes the individual to greater health risks such as heart disease and obesity. Chicken nuggets and fries do provide nutrients such as vitamin C and calories for the average teenager. The problem lies when the other vital parts of our body, such as our bones, eyes, and skin are left behind. For example, calcium deficiency increases osteoporosis, while an excess intake of salt in a daily manner leads to higher blood pressure. Lack of iron can lead to decreased brain functions.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is that eating only chicken nuggets leads to serious vitamin and iron deficiencies, not to mention a lack of good fats, vitamins, calcium, and antioxidants. Fruits and vegetables are essential for long-term health. Having only one food for a diet is a sure way to acquire chronic conditions such as cancer and heart diseases. Not to mention, eating only one or two types of food at one point is indicative of a greater psychological issue. Breaking the habit entails introducing one or two kinds of simple new foods. Don’t try and eat entirely healthy foods. Once other foods have been introduced, one should try out healthier foods. Variety is the spice of life. Children must be encouraged to eat a variety of foods at any given time. They should not be forced to eat just one particular food for extended periods. Remember that junk food offers little to no nutrients, which can cause serious anemia and even hospitalization. We can all learn from Stacey Irving.