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Wednesday, October 20, 2021

FAST FOOD

 


Swinging through the drive-thru or hopping into your favourite fast-food restaurant tends to happen more often than some would like to admit. While an occasional night of fast food would not hurt, a habit of eating out could be doing a number on your health. 

Effect on the Digestive and Cardiovascular Systems.

Most fast food, including drinks and sides, are loaded with carbohydrates with little to no fibre. When your digestive system breaks down these foods, the carbohydrates are released as glucose (sugar) into your bloodstream. As a result, your blood sugar increases. Your pancreas responds to the surge in glucose by releasing insulin. Insulin transports sugar throughout your body to cells that need it for energy. As your body uses or stores the sugar, your blood sugar returns to normal. This blood sugar process is highly regulated by your body, and as long as you are healthy, your organs can properly handle these sugar spikes. But frequently eating high amounts of carbohydrates can lead to repeated spikes in your blood sugar. Over time, these insulin spikes may cause your body’s normal insulin response to falter. This increases your risk for insulin resistance, type-2 diabetes and weight gain.

Sugar and Fat.

Many fast-food meals have added sugar. Not only does that mean extra calories, but also little nutrition. The American Heart Association (AHA) suggests only eating 100 to 150 calories of added sugar per day. That is about six to nine teaspoons. Many fast-food drinks alone hold well over 300ml. A can of soda contains 8 teaspoons of sugar. No amount of trans fat is good or healthy. Eating foods that contain it can increase your LDL (bad cholesterol), lower your HDL (good cholesterol), and increase your risk for type-2 diabetes and heart disease. Restaurants may also compound the calorie-counting issue. In one study, people eating at restaurants they associated as “healthy” still underestimated the number of calories in their meal by 20 percent.

Sodium

The combination of fat, sugar, and lots of sodium (salt) can make fast food tastier to some people. But diets high in sodium can lead to water retention, which is why you may feel puffy, bloated, or swollen after eating fast food. A diet high in sodium is also dangerous for people with blood pressure condition. Sodium can elevate blood pressure and put stress on your heart and cardiovascular system. According to one study, about 90 percent of adults underestimate how much sodium is in their fast-food meals. The study surveyed 993 adults and found that their guesses were six times lower than the actual number (1,292 milligrams). This means sodium estimates were off by more than 1,000 mg. Keep in mind that the AHA recommends adults eat no more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium per day. One fast-food meal alone could have half your day's worth.

Effect on the Respiratory System.

Excess calories from fast-food meals can cause weight gain. This may lead toward obesity. Obesity increases your risk for respiratory problems, including asthma and shortness of breath. The extra pounds can put pressure on your heart and lung and symptoms may show up even with little exertion. You may notice difficulty in breathing when you are walking, climbing stairs, or exercising. For a child, the risk of respiratory problems is especially clear. One study found that children who eat fast food at least three times a week are more likely to develop asthma.

Effect on the Central Nervous System.

Fast food may satisfy hunger in the short term, but long-term results are less positive. People who eat fast food and processed pastries are 51 percent more likely to develop depression than people who do not eat those foods or eat very few of them.

Effect on the Reproductive System.

The ingredients in junk food and fast food may have an impact on your fertility. One study found that processed food contains phthalates. Phthalates are chemicals that can interrupt how hormones act in your body. Exposure to high levels of these chemicals could lead to reproductive issues, including birth defects.

Effect on the Skin, Hair and Nail.

The foods you eat may impact your skin's appearance, but it might not be the foods you suspect. In the past, chocolate and greasy foods like pizza have taken the blame for acne breakouts, but according to the Mayo Clinic, it is carbohydrates. Carbohydrate-rich foods lead to blood sugar spikes, and these sudden jumps in blood sugar levels may trigger acne. Children and adolescents who eat fast food at least three times a week are also more likely to develop eczema, according to one study. Eczema is a skin condition that causes irritated patches of inflamed, itchy skin.

Effect on the Bones.

Carbohydrates and sugar in fast food and processed food can increase acids in your mouth. These acids can break down tooth enamel. As tooth enamel disappears, bacteria can take hold, and cavities may develop. Obesity can also lead to complications with both density and muscle mass. People who are obese have a greater risk for falling and breaking bones. It is important to keep exercising to build muscles, which support your bones, and maintain a healthy diet to minimize bone mass loss.

Effects of Fast Food on Society.

Today, more and more people are considered overweight or obese. A high percentage of children ages between 6 to 19 years are also considered overweight or obese. The growth of fast food globally seems to coincide with the growth of obesity worldwide. Despite efforts to raise awareness and make smarter consumers, one study found that the amounts of calories, fat and sodium in fast-food meals remains largely unchanged. As people get busier and eat out more frequently, it could have adverse effects for the individual and the healthcare system.

As usual, we remind you to take your Memo Plus Gold daily. It will help to keep you alert and mentally sharp. For more information or to order for Memo Plus Gold, please call : 603-62752020.

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