Food is the fuel that allows our bodies to function throughout the day and contributes to the shape of our bodies as well as, fuelling us during growth and development. Regrettably, some of the foods we take into our body can hinder us more than help us, and can even cause health problems if eaten in excess over a length of time. The commonly used term for these types of foods is “junk food.”
Defined as food high in calories and offers little to no nutritional value. Junk food such as candy, chips, burgers, pizza, and ice cream, can contribute to medical problems such as obesity, and can cause problems with your heart, brain, kidney, and liver.
While there are multiple reasons why our health experts at Apollo Hospitals say that junk food is bad for you, the following 10 are at the top of the list.
- Causes problems with digestion — Junk food tends to be deep fried, or cooked in excessive amounts of oil. The oils that absorb into the junk food are deposited in the lining of your stomach, which increases acid production.
The result leads to irritable bowel syndrome, acid reflux, and other digestive problems. Excessive amounts of junk food can also cause constipation because of the lack of fibre in the food which, in turn, hinders digestion.
- Makes you weak – Our bodies have a list of essential nutrients such as proteins and vitamins that are required to help our bodies maintain our overall health and to function adequately and efficiently on a daily basis.
After eating junk food you may feel full, but you will not be satisfied regarding vitamins and nutrients. It fails to provide you the energy you need, making you feel tired and weak. Continuing to abuse your body in this way may lead to chronic fatigue which will make it difficult for you to perform daily tasks.
- Type II Diabetes – Eating a healthy diet ensures that your body receives its required supply of glucose, which helps to maintain your sensitivity to insulin.
However, the excessive stress put on your metabolism by eating junk food affects the ability of your body to use insulin correctly. The lack of fibre content also leads directly to spikes in sugar levels; eating junk food frequently can also lead to obesity, which is a leading cause of insulin resistance and the development of type II diabetes.
- Obesity – As mentioned in the third point, obesity can lead to type II diabetes. Being obese can also lead to an increased risk of high blood pressure, heart attack, and cancer. Obesity increases stress on your muscles, which will make you feel sore and constantly tired.
When you consume an unhealthy meal, you do not receive adequate nutrition for the energy your body needs to function properly. Therefore, you are hungry sooner than is necessary, which causes you to overeat throughout the day.
- Depression – A healthy diet plays an integral role in maintaining a proper hormonal balance. Any change in this balance can lead to feelings of lethargy, sadness, and depression.
Teenagers are particularly sensitive to this, so it is paramount to maintain a healthy diet and limit junk food intake.
- Kidney disease – Junk food tends to contain high amounts of salt (sodium), which disrupts the balance of sodium and potassium in your body. By consuming high amounts of salt, you are causing your kidneys to work harder to filter out all the excesses salt in your blood.
- Damages your liver – The high level of trans-fats in junk food can cause fat to deposit in your liver, which in turn can cause your liver not to function properly. Amazingly, these are the same effects that occur in people who consume too much alcohol.
- Increases your risk of cancer – Junk food is highly processed, and therefore it is no longer nutritious. The lack of fibre affects digestion, and it leaves multiple chemicals in your body when consumed. The build-up of these toxins can lead to cancer.
- Increases your risk of heart disease — Our bodies need cholesterol to function, but not as much as what is added to the body when junk food is consumed on a regular basis. All the saturated and trans fats in junk food contribute to the build-up of plaque in our blood vessels.
This increase in plaque can also cause damage to the linings of your blood vessels, which then causes inflammation, causing a build-up as cholesterol attaches itself to the lining. When the blockage in big enough, it can lead to a heart attack.
- Affects brain function – Recent studies have also shown that the fats from junk food tend to replace the healthy fats in the brain, which consequently interferes with the brain’s signalling What this means is that junk food consumption can slow down or hinder brain function.
Eating junk food in small amounts inconsistently isn’t detrimental to your health. However, if you choose to consume junk food on a daily basis, then there is no guarantee that you will avoid the health problems listed above. Many of us choose to eat junk food because it is cheap and convenient, but we forget to think about how much money we would lose in the long run with all these health issues.
Do not forget to think about your future and the future of your family. If you wish you consult on how you can incorporate a better and healthier diet into your daily routine, contact Apollo Hospitals International Patient Services for caring and professional advice.