Here are the seven evils of fast food. If you can– it IS possible if you buy with care, avoid them.
There’s nothing wrong with food being fast. To walk into an eatery, order a meal and get it in five minutes is great. There’s a trade-off when commercial pressures come into the story.
1. Substandard Ingredients
No, not everywhere, nor all food in a particular outlet. Large chains and the wholesale suppliers to smaller places have a grand opportunity to offload low-quality ingredients processed to make them acceptable, especially in highly-flavored food (see # 2 and # 3 below).
Be aware, and look for better quality food; most Indian places use good, fresh ingredients, for example, whereas a lot of Chinese outlets buy in highly-processed partly-prepared ingredients to go with the fresh stuff. Burger joints vary from fastidiously pure food to utter garbage in both meat and sauces– and Macdonald’s and Burger King are better than most for purity.
The worst ‘offenses’ involve mechanically reclaimed meat and using polyphosphates and emulsifiers to retain processing water in meat. When you can see a nutrition table, look for the protein to fat ratio. Highly-processes ground meat products such as sausage and kebab meat can vary from 1:1 to 3:1 fat, with a third of the weight added water.
2. Fat and Sugar For That Blobby Feeling
These are the staples of most quick preparation foods. You’ll already be aware that a high fat, high sugar diet is unhealthy. An occasional fast food meal should be no problem nutritionally– your body is great at dealing with infrequent overload.
Both fat and sugar are addictive (see # 7) and combine to make the best way to pick up atherosclerosis, arthritis, diabetes, heart attacks and cancer– if that’s your choice of future.
3. Salt Can Lead To Hypertension
The result is that a fast food diet is almost always a high-salt diet.
To most punters, tasty equals salty. Salty equals hypertension equals high blood pressure equals collapsed arteries and heart failure. Eating less salt is impossible if you major on fast food, because you don’t control salt addition and if a fast food joint left it out, most of its customers wouldn’t come back.
4. Low Fiber Equals Gut Problems
Fast foods rarely include much fruit or vegetables by weight– they tend to be garnishes. When most of the other calories come from refined oils and sugar, fast food meals as a whole are very low in fiber.
This is the cause of sluggish digestion, dyspepsia and poor food absorption and poisoning from inefficient waste elimination. It’s also reckoned to seriously increase some cancer risks (especially that all too common colon cancer).
You’ll be liable to the usual constipation and dyspepsia if you eat a lot of fast food and other low-fiber stuff. No problem if it’s an occasional treat and you usually eat plenty of vegetables and other fiber-rich food.
5. Additives Can Mess Up Your Body
You’ll probably know already if you are particularly sensitive to any of the more dire additives, like azo dyes or benzoates, and you’ll have the problem of finding out whether the fast food you’re looking at is free of your particular horror. The friers and counter staff usually haven’t a clue what’s in their food.
Many food additives are fine, but that’s not always the case with fast foods. Preservatives are often mild poisons, artificial flavorings can mess up your digestion’s signaling system and many commercial colours promote allergies in a large minority while they disguise bad ingredients. Watch out for places that use all of these to boost bad food.
6. Nutrient-Poor– You get Sick
Many ingredients, from oils and flour to pickles and sauces, are given a long shelf life for convenience. This involves removing the part of the food that spoils quickly and adding artificial preservatives. Problem is, the preservatives are mostly bad for you and the stuff removed is the fiber, plant sterols, vitamins and other natural ingredients that you need to eat to stay healthy.
This evil is maybe the worst problem with fast food, as well as other ready meals from supermarkets and those cheaper restaurants that buy in chilled and frozen meals ready to microwave, grill and fry for you.
That’s why most people today are sick in body and listless, prone to illnesses and body breakdown like arthritis, diabetes and cancer. Being like this is, for most people, a choice, not inevitable. If you choose this kind of food as your staple diet, you choose the consequences, too.
7. Addictive– You can’t Stop The Gorging
Be aware, and you can reduce your dependency on this kind of food, wherever you buy it.
Many food additives are fine, but that’s not always the case with fast foods. You’ll probably know already if you are particularly sensitive to any of the more dire additives, like azo dyes or benzoates, and you’ll have the problem of finding out whether the fast food you’re looking at is free of your particular horror. In Summary …
An occasional fast food meal should be no problem nutritionally– your body is great at dealing with infrequent overload. Eating less salt is impossible if you major on fast food, because you don’t control salt addition and if a fast food joint left it out, most of its customers wouldn’t come back.
I ought to finish, though, by reminding you that Fast Food isn’t the only kind that has these Seven Evils! Most people in the West have sick bodies because their whole diet is based on prepacked, processed food with (as we say) all the goodness taken out.
In Summary …
A key reason so many people major on fast food is its addictiveness– I’ve given the reasons for that above. The usual result is that you eat far more food than you can burn up for energy, and it gets stored as fat.
Overall, then, fast food can be a seriously quick way to Bad Health, with an unpleasant long-term future for you if you make this kind of food a way of life. If you choose your outlet and meal carefully, fast food can be a delight and at least fairly healthy. Once in a while, even the most fastidious foodie can indulge!
If you’re a ‘normal’ member of Western Society, you’ll have spent little of your attention on these ‘scare campaigns’, and a lot more on believing the thousands of adverts promising a wonderful lifestyle if only you’ll eat their heavily-advertised junk food. It amounts to, “Indulge yourself, and you’ll be happy,” with the suggestion that you can eat treats many times a day without any consequences to your health.
Overall, then, fast food can be a seriously quick way to Bad Health, with an unpleasant long-term future for you if you make this kind of food a way of life.