People nowadays are mostly seen munching there way at fast food restaurants during lunch breaks, snack time or even at dinner. A lot has relied on fast foods because it’s a quick and easy meal to grab on the go. But just how common fast foods are around the globe? Well, a research proves that fast food chains continue its explosive worldwide expansion. According to Addie Patrico, “There are around 3 million fast food chains all over the world and it has become a wide spread phenomenon worldwide. It’s not just some trend of the United States anymore. It has also evolved to Canada, Europe, Asia, and other places around the world”. (2011) This certainly leads us to believe that fast food chains have become the favorite dining spot of most individuals. One cannot also deny that both children and adults indulge in these unhealthy eating places not knowing what these can negatively bring to their lives, and most especially to their health.
Moreover, a lot of factors have been present why people tend to buy and eat food at fast food chains. Well based on everyone’s experience, the people in our society love to eat at these places because of it being efficient, low-priced, time-saving and convenient. When people go in fast foods such as Mcdonald’s, they don’t have to worry of wasting so much time waiting for their food to come as mostly compared to what they do on fancy restaurants. The food is served immediately as they reach out to pay their bills and then they can go take their seats and happily eat their orders. In addition to that, fast food chains offer great deals on their value meals, especially to those who are on a tight budget. (Inong, 2009). As the world is suffering from globally economic crises, people think of ways that would make them be able to save money and one way to do that is to hunt for cheap meals in the market. And another thing is, no matter how far people are from home, they can still access cheap meals wherever they go. Cheap meals that are delicious and are everyone’s favorite, too! Nevertheless, it’s just sad to say that even if some people are aware of the harm these small joys of theirs bring to them, they continuously patronize and buy these kinds of food.
To begin with, one reason that makes fast foods dangerous to one’s health is that it is made up of a lot of preservatives to prolong its shelf life. For example: A preservative that is commonly used among processed foods is HFCS or also known as High Fructose Corn Syrup. A lot of manufacturers use this preservative because it is much cheaper to produce sugar found in corns than in sugar canes. HFCS is specifically used in soft drinks, yoghurts, pasta, and hamburgers which trick us into consuming more. (Mclaughlin, 2011). It is known to cause addiction thus explaining why people are so into these types of food. In addition, processed foods also contain high content in sodium that too much consumption of it can cause high blood pressure and cardiovascular complications. (Dewey, 2011). Along with high blood pressure is the increase in levels of bad cholesterol and reduces an individual’s metabolic rate. This means that a person’s ability to digest, process and eliminate food is very slow.
Artificial flavoring, on the other hand, has also been implicated to cause cancer among individuals. It has been said that it is used because it is only made up of cheap chemical mixtures that mimic original flavorings. But then, despite the fact that manufacturers can lessen their costs from buying ingredients, they put their consumers’ health at risk because artificial flavorings are said to be linked to allergic reactions, dermatitis eczema, hyperactivity and asthma. A study even showed that it also causes headaches, dizziness and hallucinations. (Mercola, 2011) And last but not the least, it doesn’t contain enough vitamins needed in the human body because it has been lost when it underwent to too much freezing, blanching and canning.
Another reason why the people in our society should avoid eating fast foods is because one of its main ingredients consists of cleaning chemicals which makes it a hundred times poisonous. In the widely known fast food chain Mcdonald’s, its chicken nuggets contain dimethylpolysiloxane, which is an anti-foaming agent made of silicone used to preserve the food. Based on research, an intake of five grams of dimethylpolysiloxane is enough to kill a person. (Mercola, 2011) Just imagine that too much consumption of chicken nuggets from Mcdonald’s is more than enough to make you sick. You can die from being poisoned, too. Also, the food in Mcdonald’s has been unhealthy that the processed fat in their food promotes endothelial dysfunction for up to five hours after eating a meal. (Tanenberg, 2005) It is said that this disorder causes the blood vessels to not function normally, making you vulnerable from accumulating diseases from the surrounding environment.
Similarly, Taco Bell has been one of the top lists to be one of the unhealthiest fast food that there is across the globe. News has been reported that Taco Bell’s meat is only 35% of their actual product. In truth, Taco Bell’s beef contains an overabundance of water, wheat oats, soy lecithin, maltodextrin, anti-dusting agent and corn starch. In short, their beef is comprised of binders, extenders and fillers which make it debilitated. (Hahnefeld, 2009) In like manner, the bleached wheat flour the famous KFC has been using causes rapid insulin spikes in the blood sugar level. When this happens, it can cause problems regarding insulin control making a person susceptible into getting type two diabetes. We wouldn’t want to have a lifetime medication, do we? And also, KFC has been using a chemical called maltodextrin. This chemical has been said to suppress our immune system, cause blood sugar fluctuation, promote to weight gain, and can even lead to addiction. These findings very much clearly disclose the disadvantages of the consumption of KFC products. It is also cannot be denied that our all-time favorite KFC products should be avoided for the sake of maintaining an unimpaired health. (Armour, 2012)
Based on the research and given examples, one must admit that even though fast food chains make our lives efficient through selling cheap products, they are conspicuously unable to provide the nutrients that our bodies need. They conspicuously and significantly cause health risks among its consumers, which are unlikely to be treated easily. To illustrate, the number one main problem in the United States is obesity and is chiefly caused by the consumption of fast foods. Fast food is consistently high in calories, plus the serving portions are large wherein it promotes the intake of too much calories that makes people fat. A study has revealed that people who ate at fast foods two or more times a week are likely to experience an average weight gain of ten pounds than those who ate fast food less than once a week. Obese adults are at risk of experiencing tons of health risks such as heart disease, diabetes and some cancers. This health risk is also heightened more with other factors such as alcohol consumption, smoking and little physical activity. In particular that there is less exercise and more food consumption, energy imbalance would be present in which would allow our body fats to grow in excess and cause flabby arms, stomach, legs and cheeks.
Furthermore, the consumption of fast foods among young adults develops an increase in insulin resistance, making a huge risk factor for type two diabetes. Hypertension, on the other hand, can be experienced among fast food consumers. This illness is developed from too much consumption of foods that are high in fats, sodium and cholesterol. As hypertension gets worse by the day, it stresses the muscles of the heart, thereby increasing workload on the heart. For this reason, hypertension can lead to fatal cardiac events such as a heart attack and in some cases, can lead to stroke. (Hamond, 2011) Consequently, foods that are high in saturated and trans fat causes our cholesterol to spike up and encourage to build plaques in our arteries. Plaque begins to stick in the walls of our arteries instead of being flushed out and it also coats the inner walls of arteries, narrowing the space for the blood flow. The more saturated fats you eat, the more plaque builds up in the walls of the arteries. And when this happens, it can cause a serious heart disease called Atherosclerosis; another name for the hardening of the arteries. (Cunnings, 2011)
Moreover, Swedish researchers had found out that the consumption of fast food can lead to Alzheimer’s disease, plus making people stupid. American population has been known to consume fast foods more than the average daily intake needed and it has been proven that Americans has become so stupid that they cannot understand the meanings of complex sentences or even the link of cause and effect. It has also been suspected that the high intake of fats and cholesterol in combination with genes can adversely affect brain substances, which can be a great factor in the development of Alzheimer’s. According to Mike Adams, “It is no exaggeration to say that, through the destructive influence of fast food, America has become a nation of the mentally retarded. Note that this is not a derogatory term, but rather a technical description of the brain function effects of widespread fast food consumption”. (Adams, 2011)
All of the points presented can lead us to conclude that unhealthy lifestyles would be present as long as fast food chains are involved in every individual’s life. Everyone, both children and adults, are harmed whenever they consume too much of the processed foods and what is worse is that, others don’t even care about getting sick and putting their health at risk. Human bodies get ill that our immune systems get damaged thus not being able to respond to defend our bodies against unwanted viruses and diseases. It makes us vulnerable to acquire diseases easily because of the weak response our immune system gives. (Stockdale, 2012)
To sum up everything that has been discussed, I believe that fast foods should be avoided at all costs for it is proven to be both unhealthy and cause you to put your health at countless risks. Even consuming fast foods more than twice a week has been said to still have a negative impact on health. (Irani, 2007) Therefore, the recommended intake of fast foods should only be at least once a week and not more than that for you to not harm your own body. Also, a healthy lifestyle should be present in every person’s life. The people should have realized by now that taking the right choices on what to eat is a step towards a strong and healthy living. And what is more important here is that, when a person changes his way of living for the better, and chooses to be on a healthy diet, his chance of getting at risk for and treatment of diseases is decreased. An individual also strengthens his immune system by the types of food he eats and in fact, his emotional and well-being is improved, too. Not to mention having an improved body weight and extended life expectancy as well. (Mclaughlin, 2011)