7 reasons why processed food is harmful to your health
With today’s growth in economy and urbanization, people are more at risk of developing obesity and diabetes than ever. What makes our food habits so different than it was nearly twenty years ago?
Processed foods are items that are processed chemically and developed from pure ingredients and artificial substances.
Processed food has slowly evolved. In fact, every time a population begins to adopt the western diet that is high in processed foods, they end up gaining massive amounts of weight and feel ill. Obesity isn’t just caused by genetics it is also caused by the food we consume.
Here are seven reasons why processed foods are harmful to your health.
Processed foods are high in sugar and high-fructose corn syrup
Most processed foods are often filled with refined sugar. Consuming sugar in large amounts can potentially harm the body. Sugar is filled with empty calories, which has no essential nutrients but contains a high amount of energy.
According to research, sugar can lead to harmful results that will effect on the metabolism. Consuming large amounts of sugar may lead to high triglycerides, insulin resistance, increased the level of cholesterol with an increased amount of fat build-up in the abdominal cavity and liver.
Processed foods leads to overconsumption
Food manufacturers aim to spend a fortune on resources that will enhance their food products and make them rewarding to our brain – which leads to overconsumption. Evidence shows that the rewarding value of diet and bypass the defense mechanism which makes us eat more than we should. Processed foods feel like rewards to our brains as they enhance cravings, affect our minds and ultimately cause us to eat until we start to feel ill.
Processed foods are high in refined carbohydrates and trans fat
While carbohydrates may be good for the body, carbohydrates from whole foods provide better value than carbs from processed junk foods. Most processed foods are high in carbs and naturally break down in the digestive tract that leads to significant spikes in blood sugar and insulin levels.
The sharp hike in these levels can result in carb cravings that turn into a blood sugar roller coaster. Eating high amount of refined carbohydrates is also associated with harmful health effects and chronic diseases that have become common in the world today.
Processed foods contain artificial ingredients
Today, most processed foods are loaded with tons of synthetic chemicals that include textures, flavors, preservatives, and colorants. Even the “healthy” brands tend to market a low-carb health bar with over 20 ingredients. Additionally, it is important to understand that processed foods also contain a high amount of additional chemicals that are not even listed on the manufacturer label.
Processed foods can make you addicted
The rewarding feeling of consuming of processed foods can provide a series of consequences to the body. Some may even become addicting to food and lose total control over their cravings. While food addiction isn’t acknowledged, it is still a large problem we face in today’s society.
In fact, some people can’t control their eating habits as their brain is alternated and controlled by the release of dopamine that happens in the brain when they eat.
Processed foods are low in nutrition and fiber
Unnatural foods are low in nutrients our bodies need as some even provide vitamins to compensate for the lack of nutrients during the process.
However, these types of nutrients area poor good replacement as real food contains more than the standard requirements of minerals and vitamins. The more processed foods you eat, the fewer vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants your body will get – and ultimately lead to a deficiency.
One primary function of fiber is how it works as a form of prebiotic, which feeds the good bacterial material in the intestine. Evidence shows that fiber can also reduce the amount of carbohydrate absorption and help us feel satisfied with less amount calories from whole foods.
Soluble fiber is known as an excellent treatment for constipation as the fiber is found in natural foods. However, processed foods will not contain fiber as it is often deducted during the process or removed.
Processed foods use less energy to digest
Manufacturers aim to increase the shelf-life of their products. This means they want each product to provide the same consistency and become consumed quickly. Processed foods are often easy to drink.
Replacing real food like vegetables, meat, and butter with processed junk food will only lead us to weight gain, lack of energy, a dark mind and more. The key to proper health is to consume real food and skip the processed.