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Transcript of Junk Food
Nutritional Value, if any
It basically depends on what kind of junk food you are having. Every item of food that we eat contains some nutritional value, but the fact is that junk foods contain more harmful things than beneficial ones. Therefore, they are mostly avoided.
Junk food is defined as food with little redeeming nutritional value (small amounts of vitamins or minerals) in the food or that it is high in sugar or high in fat. A look at the nutritional information on the label will list the number of calories per serving, grams of fat, sodium, cholesterol, fiber and sugar content. This nutritional information will make you more knowledgeable in selecting foods to reduce your nutritional health risk. Calorie content of 300 calories per serving or less is considered to be all right, except whole meals unless you are following a weight loss diet.
By: Janak Bhojwani
A study by Paul Johnson and Paul Kenny at the Scripps Research Institute in 2008 suggested that junk food consumption alters brain activity in a manner similar to addictive drugs. The rats were given unimited supply of junk food which affected the rat's brain which wanted more junk food for pleasure. After the junk food was taken away and replaced with a healthy diet, the rats starved for two weeks instead of eating nutritious food. A 2007 British Journal of Nutrition study found that female rats who eat junk food during pregnancy increased the likelihood of unhealthy eating habits in their offspring. Junk food doesn't contain the nutrients your body needs to stay healthy. As a result, you may feel chronically fatigued and lack the energy you need to complete daily tasks. The high levels of sugar in junk food puts your metabolism under stress; when you eat refined sugar, your pancreas secretes high amounts of insulin to prevent a dangerous spike in blood sugar levels. Because fast food and junk food don't contain adequate amounts of protein and good carbohydrates, your blood sugar levels will drop suddenly after eating, leaving you feeling grumpy, fatigued and craving sugar.
Junk Food Contributes to Poor Performance and Obesity
Junk food contains large amounts of fat, and as fat accumulates in your body, you'll gain weight and could become obese. The more weight you gain, the more you'll be at risk for serious chronic illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease and arthritis. You could even have a heart attack.
The high levels of fat and sodium in junk food can cause high blood pressure or hypertension. Excessive dietary sodium can also have a negative effect on renal function, even leading to kidney disease.
In the short term, high levels of dietary fat lead to poor cognitive performance. You'll feel tired and have trouble concentrating because your body might not be getting enough oxygen. Junk and cooked foods deplete oxygen stores. They use up more oxygen then they give off. Processed sugar, white flour, hamburgers, French fries and pizza are major oxygen users.
Junk Food Can Damage Your Liver and Your Heart
The high levels of fat and sodium in junk food and fast food can contribute to heart disease by raising blood cholesterol levels and contributing to arterial plaque build up. The high levels of trans fatty acids found in many junk foods and fast foods can lead to fatty liver deposits, which, over time, can cause liver dysfunction and disease.
Junk Food Can Lead to Diabetes
Over time, the high levels of sugar and simple carbohydrates in junk food can lead to type 2 diabetes. This occurs because eating too much sugar puts your metabolism under stress; when you eat a lot of refined white sugar and simple carbohydrates, your body has to pump up insulin production to prevent a dangerous spike in blood sugar levels.
Because junk food doesn't contain the protein or complex carbohydrates that your body needs to maintain consistent blood sugar levels, your blood sugar levels will drop suddenly soon after eating. You'll crave sugar and likely end up eating more junk food.
Over time, this stress damages your body's ability to use the insulin secreted by your pancreas. A healthy diet can help maintain your body's insulin sensitivity.
Well, if prepared at home without artificial chemicals (often used in junk foods for flavor, color and taste), harmful preservatives and ingredients, keeping an eye on the level of sodium (which can be replaced with natural potassium) and sugar, using fresh vegetables/meats instead of fatty or processed items and where hygiene is maintained, these dishes, traditionally considered as junk food, can prove a bit healthier. The most important factor which makes junk food harmful for health is the content it has and the way they are prepared. Most of the junk foods found in food joints are cooked in cheap oil which is very rich in cholesterol and fat content. Regular consumption of such food can easily harm our body and can cause serious health problems in the longer run. It goes with the old adage, "too much of everything is bad". It also applies to consuming food with high calorie and less nutrition content. However, in today life style it is not possible to totally avoid junk foods. Moreover, it is not totally harmful to enjoy food from your favorite fast food corner where proper hygiene is maintained while spending some happy moments with your family and friends.
A balanced diet means getting the right types and amounts of foods and drinks to supply nutrition and energy for maintaining body cells, tissues, and organs, and for supporting normal growth and development. A diet that contains the proper proportions of carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, minerals, and water necessary to maintain good health.
2 slices whole wheat bread
1 slice roasted red pepper
1 tsp mayonnaise
8 oz non-fat milk