Hooked on chicken nuggets: Girl, 17, who has eaten nothing else since age TWO rushed to hospital after collapsing Stacey Irvine has breathing problems and anaemia. Only other food she eats regularly are fries
Killing herself: Stacey Irvine, 17, eats little else apart from chicken nuggets. She recently collapsed after struggling to breathe and was rushed to hospital
But despite warnings cannot resist McDonald’s treats
Ever since she was a toddler, Stacey Irvine has eaten little else but chicken nuggets and the occasional portion of chips.
Now, at the age of 17, she has been warned by doctors to change her appalling diet or die.
The factory worker – who says she has never tasted fresh fruit or vegetables – had to be taken to hospital earlier this week when she collapsed after struggling to breathe.
Doctors found that her 15-year ‘chronic chicken nugget addiction’ has left her with anaemia and inflamed veins on her tongue.
So deficient was her body in vitamins and nutrients that she had to be injected with them.
Although she has been urged to drastically change her diet, she says she cannot give up the fast food.
Favourite restaurant: Miss Irvine outside her local McDonald’s in Birmingham
Stacey, who is recovering at home on a high-dose course of vitamins, has been hooked on chicken nuggets since her mother let her try them in a McDonald’s restaurant at the age of two.
‘I loved them so much they were all I would eat,’ she said. ‘I just couldn’t face even trying other foods. Mum gave up giving me anything else years ago.’
The teenager, of Castle Vale, Birmingham, admits she will occasionally vary her food intake – by eating a slice of toast for breakfast or a packet of crisps.
Yet following her admission to hospital, she has conceded that the diet is having a negative impact on her health.
‘I am starting to realise this is really bad for me,’ she said. ‘My main meal is always chicken nuggets every day.
‘McDonald’s chicken nuggets are my favourite. I share 20 with my boyfriend with chips.
‘But I also like KFC and supermarket brands.’
A less serious consequence of her craving is that she is struggling to store all the free toys that come with the fast food meals, she added – they fill four bin bags.
Stacey’s mother, Evonne, is exasperated by her daughter’s refusal to eat a healthy and varied diet and wants her to see a specialist.
‘She’s been told in no uncertain terms that she will die if she carries on like this,’ the 39-year-old explained.
‘But Stacey says she can’t eat anything else. It breaks my heart to see her eating those damned nuggets.
‘I am at my wit’s end. I’m praying she can be helped before it’s too late.’
The beauty therapist – who says her two other children Leo, five, and Ava, three, both eat healthily – has even tried depriving Stacey of food in a bid to get her to eat something other than nuggets.
Nutritionist Dr Carina Norris said that, during her ten years of experience, she has not come across such an extreme case of food addiction.
She believes Stacey’s diet will have serious long-term health implications, as her body will be lacking iron, calcium, antioxidants, vitamins and good fats.
‘She should view her health scare as a warning – a wake-up call that she needs to drastically change her diet.
‘Fruit and vegetables are integral to long-term health. Without them, you greatly increase the chances of developing chronic conditions such as heart disease and cancer.
‘So the sooner you can get children eating them, the better. It is also important that you eat lots of different colours. Stacey’s diet is going to be very beige and high in saturated fat.’
Disgusting diet: Miss Irvine with her beloved McNuggets, fries and a soda
Toy store: Miss Irvine struggles to find room for all the free toys she’s been given with her nugget meals
A 20-piece portion of McNuggets contains 58g of fat and 926 calories, which exceeds the recommended 56g daily fat allowance and is almost half of the adult guidance of 2,000 calories a day.
Jamie Oliver has scored a rare victory in the U.S. after convincing McDonald’s to change its hamburger recipe.
The chef had called on the fast-food giant to remove the filling he called ‘pink slime’.
Following his pressure, it is no longer using the mixture of ammonium hydroxide and fatty beef offcuts in the U.S.
Oliver, pilloried in the country for encouraging healthy eating, showed TV viewers how the ammonium hydroxide is added to cow parts usually used for cooking oil or pet food to eliminate E.coli.
HEALTH TIME BOMB: NUGGET NUTRITION FACTS
A diet based solely on chicken nuggets and fries has dangerous amounts of fat and salt.
It also contains few vitamins and other nutrients that are vital for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Sasha Watkins, of the British Dietetic Association, said: ‘Such a
limited diet will be low in important nutrients like calcium, fibre,
antioxidants and good fats.
‘Parents should never force a child to eat something but always keep offering new foods.’
A junk food diet with few or no vegetables can raise blood pressure and weakens the immune system.
It can also lead to an increased risk of heart attacks or strokes, particularly as we get older.
The table below shows the nutritional
values of both a small box of McDonald’s McNuggets and a small portion
of fries, and the recommended daily dietary allowances for women aged 18
Also it shows how how many calories, fat and other nutrients there are in three nugget-and-fries meals.