The Dangers of Processed Foods
There is nothing more frustrating than trying to advise a junk food addict that they need to change their diet to see the effect of all their exercise! Remember you just cannot out exercise a bad diet. I’m hoping the next points will open your eyes and make you ditch frozen or ready meals, and junk food.
1) Our bodies cannot break it down
Processed junk food is made out of non-foods and chemicals. Our gut is designed to break down and digest foods, not this “food” that’s chock full of anti-caking agents, preservatives, sweeteners, food colourings stabilizers and other scary things that do not come from nature. To sum it up; popular snacks can stay in your body until the next ice age!! Scary stuff, huh?
2) Partially Hydrogenated Oil
Also known as Trans Fats, which have actually now been banned in a few states in America because of their dire effect on your health. This ingredient is used to increase shelf life and is usually found in all baked goods; Ritz Crackers, Popcorn, Granola Bars (so called healthy!), brand name Peanut Butters, Cereals and Chocolate Bars. This ingredient has a major link to increased risk in heart attacks and high cholesterol.
3) High Fructose Corn Syrup
This nasty ingredient is a very, very cheap sweetener and you are most likely to find it in a lot of obvious brand foods, but some surprising ones as well! Fizzy Drinks, sweets, cakes, ice cream, cereal, but also tomato sauce, yoghurt, salad dressings, baked beans and bread! HFC’s are associated with obesity, heart disease, diabetes and high triglycerides.
Mono Sodium Glutamate is a common food in most popular brands, takeaway food, and even restaurant food. MSG is an additive that increases the flavour of the food its added to and is thought to make these foods addictive.
This nasty ingredient causes a long list of health problems such as heart disease, seizures, fertility issues, diabetes, cancer, brain damage and Alzheimers, to name just a few. You will find MSG is many foods including frozen dinners, ice cream, stock cubes, crisps, condiments, baby food, baby formula, cheese etc, the list goes on and on. Sometimes, the manufacturers will try to hide the fact that they have added this ingredient and will also call it yeast extract, textured protein, protein isolate or calcium caseinate. They can also be found in the vague ingredients “natural flavourings” and “seasonings”.
There are plenty more processed ingredients added to our food that I cannot begin to list in this post. Read your food labels, see something you don’t recognise? Note it down and research it, 9 times out of 10 it will be a processed dangerous additive.
5) Brain Scarring
A recent study in the Journal of Clinical Investigation found that regularly consumed fatty foods can lead to brain scarring and damage to the hypothalamus, the area of the brain responsible for hunger, thirst, and the body’s natural rhythms and cycles. While the initial study was done on rats, scientists feel the findings are insightful in regards to the human brain.
Inflammation, or neuron injury, developed in rats and mice just three days after consuming fatty foods. When rats maintained this diet long term, the neurons were permanently damaged. The brain’s attempt to heal itself while on a long term diet of high fat resulted in scarring to the central nervous system.
Most interesting, however, was the damage done to the brain’s POMC cells, which regular appetite and prevent excess weight gain. The POMC cells were reduced by over 25%, which explains why dieters who merely lower their calories count and up their exercise fail to keep the weight off and regain it back.
So there you have it: if you’re trying to lose weight, you must eat whole foods, not continue eating as you have been only with smaller portions - it only works temporarily.
So my message to you is to stress the importance of eating these whole foods; that is whole grains, vegetables, eggs, fruit, nuts, and organic meat. Not only are these foods essential for weight loss and fitness but also for the internal health of your body.
Eat Well & Prosper!