In the 21st century, lack of time has given rise to consumption of more fast food. Fast food has, in turn, turned to “junk food” and it has become a global phenomenon. You can see junk foods almost everywhere – in the shops, malls, television, movies – they are packed with excellent covers and titles to attract buyers. However, do they harm your health? In this article on why is junk food harmful to health – info will be given on the effects of having these snacks as part of your diet.
The term ‘Junk food’ was coined by Michael F Jacobson for foods that have abundant calories but low nutritional components. They also do not give the ‘full’ feeling after consumption, which can lead to eating more of them – thus making the individual obese. For example, if you are drinking soda, you are not getting healthy vital nutrients such as in green tea or fruit juice. Similar is the case when you munch on chips as well as cookies, you do not pile on vegetables and fruits. It is surprising that many of these foods fall in the variety of ‘fast food’ or ‘junk food.’
Out of the three necessities of life, food occupies an important role. It is essential for your day-to-day activity. You eat when you are hungry, but have you noticed that you also eat when you are happy or when you are depressed? Food has become a major part of stimulating the moods. From the sweet candy received as a gift for being a good boy to those of winning a competition, you need food to think good about yourself. However, it has to be noted that majority of these foods are junk foods.
Junk food is prepared very carefully – with the aim of having enough taste and low nutrients – anyone opting for this snack will eat more than one – now, you know the reason they come in small packets.
You can call them ‘junk foods’ because:
- They do not contain sufficient fiber
- They taste good
- They contain more calories but in small sizes
- They are high in cholesterol fats and have more sugar. For example, hydrogenated fat such as margarine gets converted to transfat – you tend to suffer from obesity, heart disease and hypertension.
How To Escape From The Addiction Of Having Junk Food?
- You can make a list of restaurants giving healthy food choices. Select beverages that contain vital nutrients with calories. You can opt for orange juice or lime water instead of picking on soda.
- Till the last stage of addiction, it is better to limit the viewing of TV especially for kids. There are certain serials and shows that make children go for these snacks.
- The first step would be to clean the pantry, freezer, refrigerator and any place in which these junk foods are stored. It is advisable to throw off open packages and any unopened packages to be donated to those in need. Remember the word ‘charity begins at home’ – elimination will solve the temptation to gorge on these foods.
- You have to stop going to the fast food shops. It is a gradual process, and gradually you can induce the habit in your family.
- Make a list of why your family members prefer these kinds of foods? Is it the taste? Alternatively, the outing environment where everybody comes on their own? You can successfully replace these challenges with other healthy options.
- The trips to the grocery store might take some more time. You will have to read the components on every package before selection and them making a way to the basket. Since you have taken a firm decision, you can de-select foods high in transfats and saturated fats. There are also foods to be striken off the list, that includes ones with high loads of sodium or sugar. You can choose new ways to move around the store instead of going on junk food passages.
- You can even shop at the farmer market where you can buy local produce fresh with a low cost. These include fresh vegetables and fruits, beans, legumes, real cheese, eggs, meat (fish, beef and chicken), seeds, nuts and other natural produce.
- You can plan along with your family for the menu next week and ensure the menu contains vital nutrients.
- In case of having foods outside home, kindly choose steamed, grilled, broiled over fried items.
- You can opt for soup or salads instead of fried dishes.
- Never shop for food items or go to the grocery store on an empty stomach.
In case of hunger, have healthy natural snacks such as fruits or vegetables.
Harmful Effects Of These Junk Foods
- The abundance of processed sugar, fat and carbohydrates can lead to diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular diseases and many other health conditions. You can note, after having junk food, you do not have moods for healthy food such as fried vegetables and raw fruits.
- Having junk food can lead to accumulation of sugar and sodium in your body, leading to high blood pressure (or high blood sugar levels).
- Because of lack of vital nutrients, you will have low immunity and can suffer from simple ailments such as a cough, cold and fever.
- Processed foods are mixed with additives to give them attractive flavor and taste. Some of them might be carcinogenic.
- The sugars get converted in the bloodstream producing a temporary high energy level. However, in due course of time, having more of these foods can lead to fatigue, inactiveness and drowsiness.
- They do not provide sufficient nutrients thus making your body crave for more of these foods – in turn they make the body malnourished.
- Relishing on these foods might cause you to have pleasure – the reason – dopamine – the feel-good transmitter was released in the brain, thus leading to addictive behavior.
- Women addicted to only junk food can suffer from PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) leading to infertility and giving rise to acne and hairiness. Men can get affected with lower sperm count.