Taco Bell Drive Thru Diet
The Taco Bell Drive Thru Diet is not exactly a diet plan in the traditional sense. You will not see Dr. Oz endorsing it on television. Rather, this new set of menu options and associated advertising campaign are both part of a long tradition of painting a healthy image onto fast food.
The official Taco Bell Drive Thru Diet website features nutritional information about Taco Bell food. It also features a testimonial by Christine, who uses the Taco Bell Drive Thru Diet menu at her local Taco Bell store. Christine says that while this diet is not a true weight loss plan, it did help her to lose to lose 54 pounds in a two year span. Also on the site is a set of links to popular health websites.
Following a string of lawsuits targeting fast food restaurants, McDonald's began a similar public health campaign in 2004. Their goal was to promote "balanced lifestyles" through advertising and menu options. One of the new menu options was a healthy Happy Meal for adults that featured a salad and bottled water.
Jared Fogle became a national icon when he starred in Subway sandwich commercials. Jared championed the idea that Subway is a healthy alternative to normal fast food. Jared promoted The Subway Diet after he lost a lot of weight and attributed it to Subway. The "Indiana Daily Student" featured his weight loss story in a 1999 article. The same story was later mentioned in "Men's Health". Before long, he was on every television set. The campaign boosted Subway's 2000 sales to twice the 1999 levels.
The Taco Bell Drive Thru Diet followed in the footsteps of Jared Fogle. It launched at the very end of 2009 just as people were making their New Years Resolutions.