What is junk food?
Food items that contain negligible or no nutritional value are considered junk food. Cold drinks, burgers, oily food, sausages, bakery products, and candies come under this category of food. The amount of fat, salt and calories are high in junk food. The increase in the consumption of junk food decreases the nutritional intake of the body and this will ultimately lead to a deficiency of essential nutrients, making you victim to health-related problems.
Junk food facts:
Junk foods take a toll on your growth and development. The food items that are responsible for satisfying your taste buds can have side-effects on your health. The daily consumption of junk food can take a toll on your body and can cause irreparable damage. The regular intake of junk makes you prone to heart-related diseases and that ultimately affects your brain by turning it weaker and dysfunctional.
Junk Food List:
Refined food: This includes items like refined white flour, pasta, bread, oils and white sugar. The sugar gets converted to fat and so a large intake of sugar can lead to an unwanted fat increment in our body. Packaged food and white flour-based items come under this category.
Hydrogenated Fats and Oils: Cookies, burgers, chips fries cooked with trans and hydrogenated fats are always bad for our bodies. The fat, when taken in excess, starts sticking to our arteries that leads to strokes and heart diseases. Healthy fats like Omega-3 fatty acids can be taken instead.
Salt: Salt contains Potassium and it helps in balancing the amount of water in our systems. However, excessive Sodium amounts can lead to problems like high BP. Packed and canned food items generally carry a high amount of salt.
A Detailed List:
- Desserts and Snacks: Ice cream, pancakes, hot dogs, potato chips, crisps, popcorn, biscuits, tacos, donuts, etc.
- Fast food: Noodles, burgers, pasta, fries, fried chicken, fish, sausages, chips
- Burgers: The worst junk for our body are burgers. They contain sodium, sugar, trans fats, dairy fats. They contain around 35% to 45% calories.
- Carbonated Beverages: Drinks contain sugar in high concentrations. The beverages that are called sugar free contain additives known as aspartame and sweeteners which are bad for our health if consumed for longer periods.
- Pizzas: The cheesy pizzas are harmful to our health. Although they contain lower amounts of fats and salt.
- Ice creams: Ice creams are really harmful to our health. They contain high amounts of sugar and fats. One ice cream serving contains around 15g fat.
- Sugary cereals: The brands selling healthy cereals taking advantage of the brand name sometimes sell unhealthy food. The products that contain sugar coating and synthetic sugar which is not healthy for us.
- Drinks containing sugar: Lemonade, Pepsi, Coke, hot chocolate, sprite, Dr. pepper contain sugar.
Harmful effects of junk food
Memory Loss: According to a study it has been found that the people who ate junk performed poorly in cognitive tests. Your brain turns weaker and you suffer memory loss. The Hippocampus is a part of our brain that regulates the recognition and memory. Consumption of junk food affects the hippocampus and causes inflammation.
Increased Obesity: It is a pretty commonly known fact that eating junk food increases the risk of obesity. Junk food contains more than the prescribed amount of calories, fats, and sugar which are drivers of obesity. Increased obesity may lead to many other issues like Diabetes, heart-related diseases, and joint pain.
Worsens Digestion: The excessive intake of junk food items leads our brain into a state of perplexity. The increment in sugar levels causes fluctuation of our blood sugar level which further makes matters worse. The person feels the need to eat more food. This leads to indigestion because our body is unable to handle the excessive amount of junk food consumed at one time.
Causes Depression: The high amount of fat and sugar in junk food causes some chemical reactions in our brain that ultimately affect its functioning. High consumption of junk food items leads to the loss of amino acids and nutrients that are essential for our health. This eventually leads the brain’s inability to cope up with stress and you start feeling depressed.
How does junk food affect children’s health?
Learning Issues, bad appetite, developmental Issues are some of the major issues that junk food brings with its consumption to a child’s health. The growth and development of children are based on the proper intake of essential vitamins and nutrients. Junk food consumption creates a deficiency of these and it affects development.
How to avoid junk food?
Improper food habits, the inadequacy of nutrients and improper intake of fatty acids affect the growth of several body parts and brains. Our bones turn weaker and teeth start decaying with an excessive intake of sugar and soda. One should be aware of these facts and understand how these symptoms can turn into chronic diseases if they continue to go unchecked.
Junk Food Packages and Tests?
Packaged food items containing junk food are now being sold in the name of “healthy” snacks. People choose a snack based on these parameters but you should never rely on any outside food item before checking its standards. If the food item does not contain the prescribed amount of sugar, fat, and calories for your body then you should not consume it.