Is It Time To Break Up With Fast Food?
Here in the UK, we have a long history with fast food. From the very first Harry Ramsden fish and chip shop in 1928, to the McDonalds invasion in 1974 and the grand opening of Nandos in 1992 – our relationship with junk food has blossomed over the years.
With it becoming increasingly easy to nab a date with our favourite takeaways (looking at you, Deliveroo!) these cheap, quick and easy fixes are still an attractive option for many. In fact, research shows that’s Britons are eating more than 100 million takeaways and ready meals every week and one in six young people are eating fast food twice a day.
But with obesity rates soaring and public concern over fast food reaching its peak, it’s safe to say the honeymoon period is over and many of us are reconsidering our love for burgers, burritos and biriyani. Whether it’s pizza, chow mein or fried chicken, our favourite takeaways contain high levels of sugar and fat, and the effects of our love affair are becoming apparent in our health.
So is it time to ditch convenience grub for good? To help you decide, we took a look at just a few of the effects of fast food on your body.
Contrary to popular belief, it is not actually the grease in fast food that can wreak havoc with your skin – it’s the carbs. Carb-heavy foods, like fries and hamburger buns, lead to a spike in blood sugar which in turns can cause break outs and acne. Fast foods have also been linked to eczema, which causes redness and itchiness.
According to Cancer Research UK, being overweight is associated with over 18,000 cancer cases in the UK every year and obesity is linked to 13 types of cancer. On the flip side, eating more plant foods such as fruits, vegetables and wholegrains, may help to protect against certain cancers. For example, a diet rich in fibre has been proven to reduce the risk of bowel cancer.
Blood vessels make up an essential part of your circulatory system. The sodium in fast food could cause a rise in blood pressure and this can lead to Atherosclerosis - a condition whereby the walls of your arteries develop fatty plaques, becoming brittle and susceptible to damage.
Researchers have found that having a bad diet or unhealthy life style of fast foods could lead to dementia. This is due to high blood pressure and cholesterol disrupting the blood getting to the brain.
Studies show that people who eat fast foods at least three times a week are 15% more likely to have bad breath. This is because of all the grease residue inside your body, which reacts with chemicals in your gut and releases bad smells that travel out of your mouth when you speak.
Evidence has shown that body and mind are more closely linked than previously understood. Processed foods, including sugary baked goods and high-fat fast foods, have been linked to an increase in depressive symptoms, while another study found that adults who ate fast food several times a week scored higher on levels of mental distress.
Many of us turn to fast food for a boost, but the initial surge in energy levels after consuming high sugar goods is misleading. Foods high in sugar and low in fibre lead to a spike in blood sugar and insulin levels, which can help you feel more awake in the short-term. However, this is shortly followed by a crash, where you feel more drained than before.
If you’re looking for a way to feel energised throughout the day, try taking 15ml of Benenox before bedtime. With our extraordinary nighttime mind fuel for those suffering low energy and concentration levels the following day, there’s no need to rely on junk food, energy drinks and sugary snacks.
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