A Hamburger Kept 14 Years: Not What You Think

Greensboro, NC - We've heard for years... "you are what you eat". Well...maybe not, or at least wait until you see this story before you decide.

A Utah man says he saved a hamburger from McDonalds for 14 years and says, not much has changed.

The patty has no mold or fungus on it. Its owner, David Whipple, says the only thing different is the pickle has completely disintegrated.

This made us wonder: What is really in the food we are eating?

WFMY News 2's Morgan Hightower has the meat of this story.

McDonald's response to the Happy Meal Food "Experiment"

According to McDonald's, their burgers are made with 100% USDA inspected beef. They say there are no fillers, no preservatives, just salt and pepper.

They suggest Whipple's burger may have just dried out and that's the reason there is no mold or bacteria growth on the burger.

Again, the restaurant says their burgers are preservative free, but a nutritionist in Winston-Salem says it's not uncommon to find something extra in fast food.

"They add a lot of salt, they add some sugar, they add preservatives because they have to keep the quality the same and it's all frozen, or most of it is frozen, so they need the preservatives to keep it fresh tasting," said Barb Andresen, Registered/Licensed dietitian, BAndresen & Associates, LLC.

Adresen says preservatives are everywhere. They can be found in lunch meats, hot dogs, microwavable dinners, salad dressings and more.

"Additives can be used in food to preserve, enhance the flavor, retain moisture, adjust the pH, add thickness, prevent clumping, and more. Always check the ingredient list for an overview of additives because they must be listed, by law," explained Cindy Silver, Registered Dietitian.

To avoid these extras, Andresen says to stick with simple foods and to check the ingredients label.

"The order of the amount in the food is the order of ingredients so if it's the number 1 food, it's the number 1 ingredient, than it should be what is most in that product," said Andresen.

Andresen advises her clients to stay away from high fructose corn syrup, sugar substitutes and sugar alcohol like Xylitol and Mannitol.


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