What Are McDonald’s Burgers Doing In Hospital Cafeterias?

As much as fast food chains today try to keep it on the hush hush, their products aren’t exactly healthy or a viable choice from a nutritional balance point of view. Not to mention that several experiments proved fast food doesn’t carry the vitamins our body needs. So, it’s only common sense to ask ourselves what are McDonald’s burgers and fries doing in hospital cafeterias?

As a huge representative mark of the health care system, hospitals should be the place where people go to be taught a lesson in living and eating healthier. However, as the present shows, hospitals continue to lack information about what eating healthy is. Even if it’s a marketing decision taken by the hospital’s management, patients and visitors should be aware that having McDonald’s burgers and fries in a health center is not normal.

The hospital in Des Moines has just entered scrutiny from wide nation junk food critic Corporate Accountability International for allowing the presence of a McDonald’s restaurant within the premises. The group asked the hospital to shut down the restaurant: “Your hospital is being used as part of McDonald’s comprehensive marketing strategy, a strategy that is clearly inconsistent with your goals as a health institution”.

Des Moines hospital has been hosting a McDonald’s restaurant within its cafeteria since 1988 and hospital management said nothing about an upcoming expiry date of the lease contract. In their defense, McDonald’s only had to say that the restaurant in the hospital’s cafeteria had made a lot of changes in its menu, said to be healthy options.

Danya Proud, national spokeswoman for the fast food chain, said that the company is interested in promoting “the idea that it’s not about where you eat; rather, it’s about what and how much a person chooses to consume during every eating occasion”. Yeah, sure, we can only wait for the moment a McDonald’s employer is going to deny you the purchase of the 5th burger or the 3rd order of fries.

Hospital management said that McDonald’s is “an alternative to visitors and family members to dine in a familiar environment that can be a comfort, particularly for children, during stressful times”. Their statement also added that “McDonald’s offers a variety of choices, including healthy foods such as salads, and provides nutrition information for its patrons”.

So, what do you think: should McDonald’s restaurants be available within hospital cafeterias?

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Mara is a life coach and soon, she will be a psychotherapist. She has been involved in several wellness projects and is now here for you. She will give you hints on how to reach that healthy lifestyle you always wanted. Ask Mara a question and she might just answer in one of her articles. To contact Mara, e-mail her at


  1. You should ask Eric Schlosser or Michael Blanding this question. Their books are “Fast Food Nation” and “The Coke Machine–The Dirty Truth Behind the World’s Favorite Soft Drink,” respectively. It’s all about profit. Victims be damned.

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