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Hefty teacher ate only McDonald’s for 3 months. His conclusion is NOT PC…

Jan 8, 2014 By Abraham

A 279-pound science teacher in Iowa recently let himself be the subject of his student’s experimentation. Does McDonald’s make you fat? The Colo-Nesco High School students decided to find out using their teacher John Cisna as their guinea pig.

Mcdonalds Burgers

Unlike the infamous documentary Supersize Me, Cisna and his students planned his exclusive McDonald’s diet according to 3 simple rules that we already know are important elements of a healthy lifestyle…

  1. He would only consume 2,000 calories a day.
  2. He would mix and match menu items in order to follow the FDA’s daily nutritional guidelines.
  3. He would exercise.

If he followed these rules and still got fatter, it would be McDonald’s fault.

The three students involved in the project took responsibility for the first two rules, planning Cisna’s daily meals in order to keep the total to fewer than 2,000 calories and maintain a balance of nutrients. Then the exercise, rule #3, was up to him.

He started only eating at McDonald’s and walking for 45 minutes every day.

Together the students and teacher tracked his intake and his weight, and after 90 days he’d lost 37 pounds and his cholesterol had dropped from 279 to 170.

John Cisna's McDonald's Diet

His conclusion is simple and blunt like you’d expect a Middle-American high school science teacher to be…

“It’s our choices that make us fat, not McDonald’s.”

Not everyone is please by this sort of unsubtle blaming, but he stands by it…

The local McDonald’s manager was not surprised at the results. He had been sure enough beforehand that the experiment would swing his way that he gave Cisna all his meals for free.


  1. Brendt Wayne Waters says:

    I used to think that Morgan Spurlock was the next P T Barnum, as he actually convinced people to give him money to tell them the obscenely obvious. (I was looking forward to his next documentary about how jumping in a pool can make you wet.)

    Now we find out that he wasn’t even right.

    1. Troy says:

      If you watch “Supersize Me” closely you’ll notice that he is eating between meals, choosing the least healthy items and pretty much always having dessert. Morgan Spurlock is not a documentarian, he’s a con man with an agenda. Michael Moore but smart.

  2. Chris says:

    There are more crucial health indicators than weight and cholesterol.

    Blood pressure, blood sugar, etc.

    This is aside from how educated and accessible our “choices” of food can be. Let’s just LIVE healthy, not just eat healthy.

    1. jj says:

      im a little confused sorry. ive been told that mcdonals kind of food is just bad for you, because the food is so heavy BAD kind of fat and sugar that makes your body a mess. the fat is the kind that your body cant really benefit from? Im uneducated in this thing so bare with me.

  3. zlowrie says:

    the only exercise i have time for is the walk from my car in the parking lot to the door of mcdo’s for those deliciously golden french fries. well, i take that back, i walk back to my car.

  4. Richard Phillips says:

    I’ve primarily eaten McDonald’s for lunch for the last 6 months because it is affordable and I can ensure the calorie count for lunch I’m aiming for. I’ve lost 46 lbs since May.

  5. Slayerwulfe (@slayerwulfe) says:

    he’s still fat, his problem has not been resolved. his wallet’s been trimmed though. you can or may buy turkey,bread etc. at the local food seller of your choice cheaper. a science teacher in Iowa ! i’m impressed ? more than if he was economics.

    1. Troy says:

      Just below the video. “The local McDonald’s manager was not surprised at the results. He had been sure enough beforehand that the experiment would swing his way that he gave Cisna all his meals for free.”

  6. CarolJ says:

    I would be more impressed if I knew his height, and BMI after the time period, plus if I were able to see the menu he chose (or his students chose for him!) Did he have to remove “the lid,” (top of bun); not have salad dressing, etc., etc.,

  7. Bryan says:

    Yeah… so he probably lost weight because he was eating too little.. a 2,000 calorie diet isn’t necessarily was needed for every individual it varies. So say this guy was tall and worked out his diet can easily jump to a necessary 3,000 calories, so at 2,000 calories you would lose weight no matter what you ate. It’s as simple as burning more calories than you eat to lose weight nothing else.

  8. Alex Tucker says:

    It appears that they proved that following the two rules of weight loss (limiting calories, exercising) will lead to weight loss for a person who was obviously not previously following these rules.

    While upholding to these rules with someone else picking out your meals and with a group of people watching for the outcome, is possible even eating exclusively at McDonald’s, good luck maintaining this on your own over an extended period of time eating exclusively at McDonald’s.

  9. Charles H. Green says:

    Oh please. There’s nothing here that contradicts Morgan Spurlock or runs counter to PC thinking unless you’re a science moron.

    The trick is not in what you eat, it’s in limiting yourself to 2000 calories per day.

    If you can do that (plus a bit of exercise), then you can either eat 2000 calories worth of lean chicken and chickpeas, or you can eat 2000 calories of Big Mac and fries, you will end up weighing the same.

    See: Physics, law of conservation of matter and energy.

    Want a metaphor? Which weighs more, a pound of feathers or a pound of steel? Answer: they both weigh the same – a pound.

    Same thing: which gains weight more: 2000 calories of carrots, or 2000 calories of Big Mac> Answer: they both add the same amount of weight.

    Case closed. Move away from the science teacher, there’s no story here.

  10. Daniel says:

    The key was 2000 kcal + exercise. An average man should eat 2000-2200, a woman, 1800-2000. There is nothing bad per se about burgers and this guy has done it perfectly: Right at the low end of an average man in calorie consumption, and mixed for varied food for vitamins and minerals. He was also working out, so he may have been burning 2200-2300 kCal, but only eating 2000 balanced kilocalories, then yeah, he would lose weight! Not surprised. Nothing to see here… Well actually, yes, a lot to see here! Watch your darned calorie input and output, and if you want to lose weight, there is only *one strange trick*… Eat less than you burn! There is no alternative, pill or solution to help you lose weight apart from burning more than you eat. He did this, he lost weight.

    Now…. will he keep it off? That’s another question entirely!

  11. Woody Williams says:

    Calories in / calories out: If your energy intake is less than your energy output, weight is lost. That’s the way it works and that’s the only way it works. Nutrition, on the other hand, is a different matter entirely.

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