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Protestors Ready To Battle Heart Attack Grill

By J.D. Miles & Marianne Martinez, CBS 11 News
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A waitress, dressed as a nurse, holds burgers at the Heart Attack Grill. (credit: Wayne Parham Photography/Heart Attack Grill)

A waitress, dressed as a nurse, holds burgers at the Heart Attack Grill. (credit: Wayne Parham Photography/Heart Attack Grill)

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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - A new burger joint opening Friday in downtown Dallas takes aim at your health, and even promises to make diners fat. Take one look at the Quadruple Bypass Burger and you will soon see why the Heart Attack Grill lives up to its name and its slogan: “Food Worth Dying For.”

The restaurant is well-aware of its unhealthy offerings, and even uses a medical motif that pokes fun at the idea. The owner wears a doctor’s costume. The waitresses are dressed in skimpy nurse outfits. Diners are given a medical bracelet when they sit down. Items on the menu are referred to as “procedures.”

And that menu – which includes several burgers, Flatliner Fries and a Butterfat Shake – is not for the faint of heart. “It looks delicious,” said a man passing by the Dallas location on Thursday, “but I’d be a little afraid to try it.”

“Disgusting,” said another man as he glanced at the menu. “It’s a lot of food. And I can eat a lot, but I don’t know if I could do that.”

The first Heart Attack Grill opened in Arizona. The Dallas West End location is the chain’s second restaurant. People who weigh 350 pounds or more eat free. And proving that the company lives up to its promise, their 500-pound spokesman died last year.

John Basso is the owner of Heart Attack Grill. He admits that he is promoting obesity, but said that it shouldn’t be viewed as dangerous. “We’re not promoting obesity for obesity’s sake,” said Basso. “We’re promoting obesity for fun’s sake. I’m simply saying, don’t grab something through a drive-thru window that you’re going to forget five minutes later.”

But real North Texas doctors said that diners should stay far away from the Heart Attack Grill. “Why, when we know better?” asked Dr. Cara East, specialist at Baylor’s Hamilton Heart and Vascular Hospital. “Doing something that’s harming you, why would you do it?”

Protestors plan to be outside of the Heart Attack Grill on Friday, warning people about the dangers of eating unhealthy foods and passing out healthy alternatives, like apples.

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