Why You Should Think Twice About Ordering McDonald's Quarter Pounder

Let's not kid ourselves: If you're eating at McDonald's, you probably didn't think once – let alone twice – about whether the food was a prudent idea. After all, there's no such thing as fast food for thought. McDonald's is where you go to feed a reptilian-brained need for meat, creepy clowns, and whatever the heck Grimace is. So when you enter that McDonald's with a stomach full of hunger and a mind full of inarticulate burger cravings, you've got to be in for a penny, in for a Quarter Pounder with Cheese, right? You don't want your meal to just hit the spot; you want that spot pounded into a rapturous satisfaction – or a fourth of one.

As the name implies, the beef patty in this sandwich weighs a fourth of a pound. And according to Mickey D's website, it's fresh meat. Even better, it's hot and juicy fresh meat that's "cooked when you order." Topped with "tangy pickles" and onions and seasoned with a dash of salt and pepper, it comes with two slices of melted cheese.

In for a penny, in for a lot of pounds

But don't give in to temptation just yet. Since you're already in for a penny, have our two cents: Force yourself to think about what it means to bite into this sandwich, and you might think twice about buying it.

The way to a person's heart is through their stomach, so you might want to be careful about what goes in your stomach. If the Quarter Pounder with Cheese finds the way to your stomach, it will bring along with it 510 calories, 1,150 milligrams of sodium (half your recommended daily value), 100 milligrams of cholesterol (a third of your daily value), and a generous dose of fat. The total fat content clocks in at 25 grams (roughly a third of your daily value), including 12 grams of saturated fat (60 percent of your daily value).

Grabbing a bigger version won't do you any favors, either

The Quarter Pounder with Cheese Bacon burger supersizes the nutritional downsides of the classic sandwich. It's got 620 more calories, 33 grams of fat (15 saturated), 1,500 grams of sodium, and 120 milligrams of cholesterol. Also coming in at 620 calories, the Quarter Pounder with Cheese Deluxe will hold the bacon but not save your bacon from loads of sodium and fat. 

Of course, it's not the most stunning revelation that fast food can be bad for you. But hey, it's our two cents, not priceless advice. Besides, Big Macs taste better, and you can shave quite a few cents off your purchase by ordering a McDouble with Big Mac sauce. A penny saved is a penny earned, after all.