Fast Food is Delicious, Affordable, easily available, but not Healthy. Period!

Your Fast Food is unhealthy and is making you vulnerable to many lifestyle diseases. Here is how you can make a healthy shift?

We all love the occasional cheat days and having those tempting pizza, pasta, burger, cakes, french fries or any of those junk foods. But, did you know that too much consumption of fast food is very harmful to us and our overall development? Let us delve into this a little further.

fast food
Image source – Pixabay

Fast Food could be delicious but not healthy

Fast Food or Junk Food has become a common sight these days. From big restaurant chains promoting them to small roadside stalls selling these junk foods, we are constantly surrounded by this food that pushes us further into this unhealthy habit.

Children to adults have become addicted to eating these junk foods as they are not only easily available but also tasty and cheap.

Children are often tempted by these junks food and have made it a part of their everyday diet. Parents often bribe their children with such food in exchange for good behaviour, good marks in exams or any desired behaviour.

Working adults who do not have time to cook also find it much easier to order food online. With the era of online applications, such food is delivered to our doorstep, making us even more vulnerable to the impacts of eating these unhealthy items.


Read more: How much Black Coffee is good for your health?

Going beyond the physical ill effects of junk food


Junk foods are high in fat, sugar and salt- things that majorly impact our cognitive growth. We are well aware of the physical problems that come with eating junk food- it makes you obese, lethargic, causes heart diseases, high blood pressure and diabetes. However, people are now trying to go beyond the physical impacts and look at how it impacts us cognitively.


fast food
Image source – Pixabay

(its time say goodbye to them)

Research has shown that children who consume more fast food or junk food regularly are 20% slower academically that those who do not. The reason behind this may be the lack of nutrients in such foods. Iron is an important ingredient for proper cognitive development, something that is missing from these junk foods. High sugar and salt content impact the hippocampus area in the brain, which is responsible for learning and memory.

It also impairs our brain and makes us eat more than our normal diet. Hippocampus is also a region in our brain that regulates appetite and since it is affected by junk food, our brain “forgets” that it is full and we end up eating more.

A bad diet that includes more junk food also has a great impact on our mood. It makes us feel dull and disinterested and lowers our overall mood. A study had shown that those who eat junk food are 51% more likely to show signs of depression. It has also been seen that people who showed signs of depression were found to be more active consumers of chocolate.

A lot of people eat junk food as a way to elevate their mood and feel better; however, there is also a psychological game at play here. Even though eating junk food gives us instant gratification, in a  long run it also makes us feel guilty for having eaten such unhealthy food. This is especially true for people who are well informed about the ill effects of junk food but may binge eat very often.

Read more here- junk food bad mood

How to shift from Fast Food to a Healthy Diet?

Most of these food habits that have now come to India are Western eating habits. It is important we go back to eating food that we traditionally did and were good for us. It has also been seen that not eating junk food can help our brain to return to normal levels of functioning and memory.

Including more raw vegetables, fruits, pulses, wholegrain and milk, which are rich in nutrients and proteins can help us lead a much healthier life. If we go the extra mile and add exercise, yoga or any physical activity to our daily routine, we can see drastic changes in our body and mind.


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Harshita Bajaj

Harshita has a background in Psychology and Criminology and is currently pursuing her PhD in Criminology. She can be found reading crime thrillers (or any other book for that matter) or binge-watching shows on Netflix when she is not in hibernation.
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