How fast food affects your health

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Published: September 4, 2020

There is no denying that fast food has become one of the most popular types of meals. You can get it quickly, it is often quite tasty and you can even eat it on the fly. This is why so many people often chose to grab a bite of fast food instead of picking a healthier, better option. This is also why one of the biggest concerns of both medical and fitness professionals is how fast food affects your health. While adding some “fast” meals to your weekly meal plan might not be the worst idea, there are many things that you need to know if you want to make eating this type of food a habit. Luckily, we are here to help you with it. You can find out the most important information in this very article.

Fast food affects your health of the digestive and cardiovascular systems

The first thing that we need to talk about is chemistry. Most of the fast food we can find today – including the drinks and side mills – are full of carbs (or carbohydrates). These might be alright for some things, but the huge downside of these meals is they are very low on fiber. Some fast-food meals might not even offer any fiber at all.

This can have quite an effect on your digestive system. When you start breaking foods down, all the carbs you had will be released as glucose right into your bloodstream. Glucose is, for those not apt in chemistry, sugar. And, due to this, your blood sugar levels can spike up. Again, in response to this, your pancreas will produce and release insulin to “eat” the sugar. This compound transports glucose to other cells that need energy, which is stored in the sugar molecule. Once this happens, your blood sugar levels normalize.

Blood sugar measuring apparatus
Constant sugar spikes in your blood can create many issues.

The process, as we described it, is what normally happens in your body. When you are eating healthy, this process can happen without any obstructions. However, when you are eating fast food often, your blood sugar levels will regularly spike. Due to it, your insulin response might become worse for wear. If that happens, then you develop risk for insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes or you will start gaining weight. Sadly, you will not be able to fix some of these problems with our fat loss workout – so it is important to regulate the intake of fast food in your body.

It’s not only glucose that can cause issues

Sadly, a lot of fast food meals that we find today do not only offer natural sugar. Instead, many use added sugar too. This is bad for a lot of reasons. First, it adds extra calories to your meals, so you will want to find the best personal trainers in Dubai to burn these. However, what’s even worse is that these sugars offer little to no nutrition at all.

To illustrate this, the American Heart Association suggests you eat no more than 100 to 150 calories of added sugar each day. This is from six to nine teaspoons of sugar. However, a 12-ounce can of soda will contain 8 teaspoons of added sugar. This is 140 calories – or 39 grams of sugar – inside that small cup.

Pastries are often full of trans fat, which is also quite dangerous.

What’s more, a lot of fast food will also have trans fat. This is the manufactured fat that we get when processing food. You will find it in the dough (cookies, pizza, pastries). Sadly, unlike added sugar, no trans fat is healthy for you. It can increase your LDL, which we often call bad cholesterol. What’s more, it decreases your HDL (good cholesterol), and again, increases the risk of type 2 diabetes as well as heart diseases.

How fast food affects your health through sodium

There is one more dangerous component that we need to consider when discussing the effects of fast food on your health. This is sodium or salt. Many use it to make their food quite tasty – and it is one of the necessary minerals for the proper function of your organism. However, too many of it can cause quite a lot of damages.

For starters, sodium can lead to water retention. This means that your body “keeps” the water inside, making your feel puffy, swollen, or bloated. It can also be dangerous if you have blood pressure conditions. It can raise up your blood pressure, and this can cause a lot of stress for both your heart and the whole cardiovascular system.

a bowl of salt
However tasty it makes your food – salt can cause serious damage to your body.

What’s even worse is that a lot of people underestimate just how much salt there is in their meals. Some studies show that over 90 percent of people do not even think some salt-rich foods include salt. The AHA recommends you eat no more than 2,300 milligrams of salt in a day. To compare, one fast food meal can easily surpass half of that number. So, take into account the number of meals you eat in a day and how much salt they have, and you can see why this is a huge concern. Therefore, even if you have a busy life, make sure you get the best diet possible to control your salt intake.

The effects to not stop here

It’s important to note that these chemicals aren’t the only thing in fast food – nor that they only affect your blood sugar and your heart. Calories can cause you weight gain, leading to obesity, which can then increase the risk of respiratory problems. So, not eating healthy can inadvertently cause asthma or shortness of breath.

There were even some studies that show that fast food affects your health in other ways too. People who eat processed pastries are more likely to develop depression. So, ensure you know what you are putting into your body, and try to keep healthy and stay fit as much as you can.

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