National Pancake Day 2011: Free IHOP flapjacks deliver nutritional hit

pancake, butter, breakfast, stock, 4x3
istockphoto
pancake, butter, breakfast, stock, 4x3
To mark National Pancake Day, IHOP is offering free pancakes.
istockphoto

(CBS) Want free flapjacks? Today's your day. To mark National Pancake Day, IHOP is offering a complimentary "short stack" of pancakes to all comers.

What's the hitch?

IHOP is asking customers to make a donation to Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, a group of 170 children's hospitals across North America, and other local charities.

And then there's the nutritional hitch. According to the company's website, that free short stack of original buttermilk pancakes (three pancakes) will set you back 490 calories, 18 g total fat, 1 g saturated fat, and a whopping 1,610 mg sodium. That's 110 more mg of sodium than the American Heart Association says you should eat in an entire day.

Too much sodium in the diet contributes to high blood pressure and heart disease - which suggests that, in terms of health, too many short stacks could stack the odds against you.