Fast Foods Are Unhealthy for Teenagers Essay
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Teenagers are growing socially and physically and the decisions they make throughout these years influence their current and future health (Marlow). The decision to feast at fast food restaurants is an unhealthy preference which leads to a mixture of health problems. Teenagers desire instant gratification and quickly become overfed and under nourished at fast food restaurants. (Ram). “It’s extremely difficult to eat in a healthy way at a fast-food restaurant. Despite some of their recent healthful offerings, the menus still tend to include foods high in salt, sugar and calories and low in fiber and nutrients,” said Mark Pereira, Ph.D., assistant professor of epidemiology at the University of Minnesota (Cornforth). First, fast foods…show more content…
Obese teenagers have an 80% chance of becoming an obese adults (Keenan-Green). Additionally, a fast food meal contains more calories than a healthy meal of the same quantity which swiftly add on pounds. The human body was designed to have a diet of low density high energy foods not high calorie energy dense foods, such as fast foods (Ram). recommended intake, but it does not provide any fiber or essential fatty acids, thus making it not very healthy (Ram). Another study actually found that some meals at a fast food restaurant had enough calories to satisfy a person’s daily caloric intake (Cornforth). Teenagers who make a regular diet of fast foods are prone to skin problems, mood swings, hormonal imbalances, blood sugar inconsistencies, obesity, and heart disease. The risk of osteoporosis may increase with increased soda consumption (Ram). Moreover, fast foods are unhealthy as they deplete the body of minerals and vitamins; they do not provide any fiber or essential fatty acids (Ram). Furthermore, fast foods such as sausage, French fries, fried chicken and sauces are unhealthy for the reason that they are full of a neurotoxic monosodium glutamate (MSG) which is used as a preservative and to enhance flavor. MSG has numerous side effects akin to headaches, chest pain, sweating, heart palpitations, nausea and weakness; some claim it interferes with thinking clearly (Martinez). This does make it a very healthy food
Effects of Eating Fast Food
Fast food is a convenient and an affordable way to fill ones belly, especially when one is on the run. Even though one should not feel bad for an infrequent indulgence, frequent consumption of fast food can extremely damage one’s health due to the excess fat as well as calories. Accompanied with minimal nutritional value, fast foods can result in numerous health problems. Fast food refers to foods which can be prepared as well as served very fast (Al-Saad, 2016). These foods may be a perfect way towards saving time; nonetheless, it is not an appropriate manner for nutrition. Examples of fast food include chips, sandwiches, salads, carbonated beverages, gum, candy, milkshakes, pizzas, and so on. Accordingly, this paper will focus on the effects of fast foods.
One effect is obesity and weight gain. A common fast food is very high in calories and fat. Weight gain happens when one ingest more calories than the body can burn in a daily basis (Machowky, 2015). Researchers have discovered that consuming more than twice on a weekly basis at fast food joints is associated with significant weight gain with time compared to occasional visits. A research done at the University of California found that living close to a fast food hotel is associated with a 5.2% risk of obesity (Machowsky, 2015). Obesity implies having excess body fat. Obesity is different from overweight, which refers weighing more. Fast foods are high in sugar and calories which causes excessive weight gain. Additionally, fast foods replace healthy eating habits, individuals who eat fast foods are unlikely to eat vegetables, fruits, and milk. This alteration in eating habits may easily result to obesity. In United States, the obesity rate among adults is estimated to be 35.5% for women and 32.1% for men (Ogden, 2014).
Eating fast foods result to diabetes (Al-Saad, 2016). Fast foods have become an alternative for numerous busy people seeking a fast as well as inexpensive alternative to making food at home. Even though they might develop diabetes, especially type 2 diabetes, often this diabetes is caused by inappropriate lifestyle choices, for instance, being overweight and being physically inactive. One side effect of consuming fast foods on a regular basis is obesity which may trigger the development of diabetes. In a 2004 research, published in The Lancet, researchers discovered that frequently consuming fast foods doubles one’s chance of having insulin resistance that amplifies the risk of having type 2 diabetes (Machowsky, 2015). Since 1980, the number of persons internationally having diabetes has greatly double from 150 million to around 360 million in 2011 (Ogden, 2014).
The third effect is cardiovascular diseases. Greater densities of fast foods are linked with a higher risk of cardiovascular diseases. Studies have found that areas having numerous fast food cafes are prone to have higher levels of hospitalization because of coronary conditions. Additionally, fast foods are often packed with sources having excess sugar as well as saturated fats, for instance, cheese, mayonnaise, and soda. Whereas this means additional calories and weight gain, also it may become a risk factor for coronary illness. Saturated fats are linked to raising cholesterol levels, whereas high sugar consumption may result to signs of metabolic syndrome that comprise increased triglycerides. Increased cholesterol levels and triglyceride are signs of cardiovascular illness and are linked with elevated risks of stroke and heart attack (Machowky, 2015).
Another effect of fast foods is high blood pressure. Common feature of numerous fast foods is high sodium, or salt content, presently, most sandwiches has around 60% of the average proposed daily consumption of sodium, which is 2,400 mg (Machowsky, 2015). Majority of low-fat and low-calorie foods are normally concentrated with salt towards making them taste better. However, extensive intake of sodium may result in high blood pressure, especially in individuals who are overweight and have sodium sensitivities.
Fast foods cause memory and learning problems. Numerous studies have demonstrated that people who eat fast foods for around 5 days perform poorly on cognitive exams which measure mood, speed, and attention (Al-Saad, 2016). Eating fast foods for 5 days frequently may deteriorate one’s memory. This possibly arises from the logic that a poor diet may cause particular chemical reactions which trigger swelling within the hippocampus that is linked with memory as well as distinct recognition. Foods that are high in fat and sugar may overwhelm the function of brain peptide referred as brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) which aids with both learning as well as memory development. Furthermore, the brain comprises synapses that helps in memory and learning. Consuming a lot of calories may obstruct healthy functioning and production of these synapses.
Consumption of fast foods raises the danger of dementia. This is among the scariest discoveries linked with eating fast foods. Insulin is generated within the pancreas where it assists in the transportation of glucose to fuel different body parts. Likewise, the brain produces insulin and it assists transport signals amid nerve cells as well as in the development of memories. A research carried out at Brown University showed that a lot of oily food, as well as sweets, may significantly rise insulin levels within our body. Similar to type 2 diabetes, having excessive levels of insulin causes the brain to shut down, thus unable to respond to this hormone. This may hinder our aptitude to think, or recall, and thus raises the risk of having dementia.
Lastly, eating fast food lessens aptitude towards controlling appetite. Excessive ingesting of fats may transfer mixed signals towards the brain making it hard towards processing if one is hungry or not. Often this is the reason why people find themselves overeating. Normal brain functionality demands daily dosage of basic unsaturated fats, such as, omega-6 (Myles, 2014). Insufficiency of these two components intensifies the danger of bipolar disorder and dementia among other brain-related conditions. Excessive consumption of fast foods makes it hard to digest these fats. Studies have shown that trans fats can result to inflammation within the hypothalamus, which is a brain part which contains neurons that control body weight. Accordingly, in most exceedingly bad situations, the habit of over consumption can be like drug addiction to a degree that depending on fast foods might trigger the pleasure parts of the cerebrum more noteworthy than getting drugs.
Fast foods are foods which can be prepared as well as served very fast. Frequent consumption of fast food can extremely damage one’s health due to the excess fat as well as calories. Consuming fast foods causes obesity and overweight, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, high blood pressure, the danger of dementia, and inability to control appetite. Thus, as appealing as these foods are, frequent consumption of fast foods is associated with diverse health problem and may even lead to premature death.
- Al-Saad, E. (2016). Causes and Effects of Fast Food. International journal of scientific & technology research, 5(04), 279-280.
- Machowski, J. (2015). The Effects of Eating Fast Foods Every Day. Retrieved from: http://www.livestrong.com/article/273862-the-effect-of-eating-fast-foods-everyday/
- Myles, I. A. (2014). Fast food fever: reviewing the impacts of the Western diet on immunity. Nutritional journal, 13(16), 1-7. Doi:.10.1186/1475-2891-13-61
- Ogden, C. L., Carroll, M. D., Kit, B. K., & Flegal, K. M. (2014). Prevalence of childhood and adult obesity in the United States, 2011-2012. Jama, 311(8), 806-814.