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Health & Families

Proposed toy ban targets high-calorie, high-sodium kids' meals

The crusade to ban toys from McDonald's Happy Meals is gaining popularity in the US after first being implemented in San Francisco last year.

A New York City councilman this week introduced the Fast Food Toy Ban Bill, which would limit any meal that comes with a toy to under 500 calories and 600 mg of sodium, reports the New York Post.

Fines would range from $200 to $2,500.

Leroy Comrie, a portly councilman for Queens, used himself as an example of a child weaned on Happy Meals and fast food to get his message across: he's estimated to tip the scales at about 300 lbs. (136 kg).

As the menu stands now, Happy Meals that would qualify for a toy under Comrie's proposal include meals like the hamburger, apple dippers with low fat caramel dip and either an apple juice or a Sprite.

Both clock in at around 450 calories and are under 600 mg of sodium. The most caloric Happy Meal is the hamburger, fries and chocolate milk, which adds up to 650 calories and 850 mg of sodium.

Calorie counts at Burger King range from 260 calories for a hamburger to 450 calories for a double cheeseburger alone with their BK Kids Meals. Complete meals including the double cheeseburger, apple fries and a chocolate milk comes out to 700 calories.

Meanwhile, one of the most caloric kids' meals can be found at Wendy's, where their four-piece chicken nuggets, fries and a chocolate milk come out to 1,310 calories.

Last November, San Francisco was the first US city to ban the practice of giving away free toys with unhealthy kids' meals.