Fast food giant McDonald's is finally getting the fat message. McDonald's Corp said Tuesday that it will switch to a new cooking oil to cut the harmful fats in its popular potatoes. But the oil change won't keep the pounds off. It will however help keep fry-lovers' hearts healthier. A small order of McDonald's fries, for example, will have the same 210 calories and 10.2 grams of total fat as before. But the harmful trans fat in a small bag of fries will shrink 47 percent, to 1.8 grams from 3.4. Saturated fat will drop 17 percent, to 1.9 grams from 2.3. And the amount of beneficial polyunsaturated fat will more than double to 3.2 grams. However, this doesn't turn French fries into a health food. Those watching their calories and cholesterol are still better off forgetting the fries. McDonald's said it would introduce the new cooking oil at its 13,000 US restaurants starting in October and expects the switchover to be complete by February 2003. The new oil will be used to cook all of McDonald's fried foods, including Chicken McNuggets, Filet-O-Fish, hash browns and crispy chicken sandwiches.
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