The consumption of these unhealthy foods is opposed to a healthy dietary pattern as they can lead to compulsive eating habit just like drug addiction due to the facts that they are loaded with a higher amount of unnecessary calories, fats, saturated fats and cholesterol. In fact, frequent consumption of these unhealthy foods can cause clogged arteries, heart attacks, stroke and other chronic diseases.

These unhealthy foods contain higher energy density that can stimulate brain’s control systems for appetite to a compulsive eating habit just like drug addiction. They are not considered as part of a healthy food because they feed the obesity epidemic by causing people to eat more unnecessary calories, fats, saturated fats and cholesterol. Indeed, this dietary pattern is in opposition to a healthy eating pattern and can accelerate the formation of plaque, clogged arteries which can later lead to heart attacks, stroke and other chronic ailments.

French Fries

French fries are preferable side dishes on the fast food outlets’ menu and these addictive fries are enjoyed by people worldwide. French fries from McDonald’s, Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), Burger King (BK), Sonic Drive-In, Wendy’s and other fast food outlets are typically unhealthy to eat since they are high in calories (e.g. Wendy’s fries-330 calories, McDonald’s fries-230 calories, Burger King fries- 340 calories, Sonic fries-200 calories) even for small serving size, saturated fats, fats (for small fries, fat content can vary from 10 to 20g of fat) and sodium for small fries (e.g. salted Burger King fries- 530 mg sodium, KFC potato wedges-740 mg sodium). High consumption of French fries will definitely contribute to increased risk of diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol and even obesity.


Since fries are mostly cooked in ultra-hot oil, they are also higher in trans fats. This double fly technique used to prepare French fries making the fries fluffy inside and crispy outside to savour individual’s appetite, making them so crazy about eating fries by popping more into their mouth without knowing its content whatsoever. The consumption of high amount of trans fats is a concern here because it will give rise to triglycerides (TC), insulin and bad LDL cholesterol level, while lowering good HDL cholesterol level by promoting stroke, artery hardening and heart attacks. Also, trans fats is not safe for pregnant moms as recent studies reveal that higher intake of trans fats is closely related to the risk of preeclampsia and birth defect.


Fries have been observed to have a glycaemic index of 75, making them unhealthy to be eaten continuously by any and all age group. Due to that fries are prepared in higher temperature, a carcinogen and neurotoxin known as acrylamide is formed confirming its unsafe level to be consumed in a long run. Considering that over 70% of the fast food outlets use corn oil instead of canola or sunflower oil to fry French fries, they are definitely not an ideal food to eat due to the higher cholesterol-raising saturated fat property found in corn oil.

Burger


It’s not exaggerated to say that most of the foods offered in the fast food restaurants are unhealthy as they contain no nutritional value, are deficient of dietary fiber, essential trace elements, minerals and vitamins. On the other hand, foods like cheeseburgers, hamburgers and so forth has a higher content of fats, saturated fats, sodium and trans fats besides having unnecessary calories not needed by your body.


Triple Whopper Sandwich with cheese (1,250 calories, 84g of fat), A1 Steakhouse XT (970 calories, 61g of fat), Texas Triple Whopper Sandwich (1,310 calories, 88g of fat) from Burger King; A1 Steakhouse XT(970 calories, 61g of fat), Texas Triple Whopper Sandwich (1,310 calories, 88g of fat), Triple Whopper Sandwich with cheese (1,250 calories, 84g of fat) from McDonald’s; Bacon Deluxe Triple Burger (1,140 calories, 71g of fat), Baconator Triple Burger (1,330 calories, 86g of fat), Triple Cheeseburger (1,030 calories, 62g of fat) from Wendy’s are some of the unhealthiest food options available at the fast food outlets.

Most hamburgers come with MSG (monosodium glutamate) and flavour enhancer which can trigger/indulge allergic reactions, migraine, and headaches. MSG, a dangerous chemical substance used to flatten up laboratory animals, if use frequently can also turn you fatter. Surprisingly, these hamburgers also accommodate over 1,000 mg of sodium, which translates to 45% more of recommended daily value and frequent eating on hamburgers are directly linked to obesity and weight gain many Americans facing today. Also, trans fats found in hamburgers have shown in many clinical studies to significantly raise bad LDL cholesterol levels and thereby increasing heart disease, stroke and blood pressure.

Soft Drinks


What’s so bad about soft drinks which are water mixed with sweetener, caffeine, additives or sugar? They taste better and have become a favourable drink in a cup. And while they are extensively introduced via fast food chains, plenty of sugar and unnecessary calories are added into soft drinks in which you might not expect. A can of coca cola for example, contains about 10 teaspoons of sugar and its intake is not nutritionally beneficial to your health. Of all soft drinks, Pepsi and Coke are much more acidic and therefore contribute to many health problems.

There has been reported that average Americans get more than 7% of their calories from these so-called “empty calorie” (or zero nutritional value) soft drinks. Another study published in the Journal of Food Composition and Analysis written that most Americans get about 1/3 of their calories from soft drinks, desserts, alcoholic beverages, salty snacks and sweets, and they drink approximately 57 gallons of soft drinks annually. No wonder chronic diseases are skyrocketing among Americans and it clearly explains why Americans are malnourished and overfed with these sugary drinks, making obesity so rampant and common among Americans.


There seems to be solid reasons why you should restrict your soft drink consumption. They may taste good but contain tartaric, phosphoric, or/and citric acids, so prolonged consumption may cause erosion in the gastric lining, interruption in digestive system, tooth decay or damage to teeth by dissolving tooth enamel, and indulgence in bone fractures and loss of bone mineral density. Frequent consumption of soft drinks will definitely contribute to increased risk of obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, liver cirrhosis, high cholesterol, osteoporosis and/or may cause insulin resistance.

Hot dogs


The widespread use of sodium nitrite, or a carcinogen ingredient, in processing meats including hot dogs, Pastrami, Salami, Pepperoni, lunch meats, Bologna, ham, meats in canned soup products, bacons, and sausages has been accurately identified as a culprit for about 67% increased risk of pancreatic cancer which is confirmed by the study conducted at the University of Hawaii. Further, this ingredient has been found to contain cancer-causing chemical called nitrosamines which can promote the growth and formation of cancerous cells to the entire body tremendously. Therefore, that’s not surprising to discover growth of cancers such as colorectal cancer among those who consume large amount of processed meats that are packed with sodium nitrite.


According to Preston-Martin, S. et al., in their research paper entitled “N-nitroso compounds and childhood brain tumors: A case-control study” published in 1982, it was written that pancreatic cancer isn’t the only health hazard caused by consuming processed meats such as hot dogs, but eating hot dogs has caused leukemia to skyrocket as high as 700%. Another study by David A. Savitz and Sara Sarasua of the University of North Carolina found that children who consumed twelve hot dogs in a month had a 9.5 times risk of developing leukemia, while those children who ate hot dogs once a week doubled their risks of brain tumors. They also stated that pregnant moms who ate hot dogs during pregnancy doubled the fetus/infant with the risk of developing brain cancer.


Due to that hot dogs are loaded with higher content of fats, trans fats, unnecessary calories and carcinogenic compounds, high consumption of hot dogs is not recommended for a health concern of diabetes, coronary heart disease, stroke, prostate cancer, high blood pressure and other chronic diseases not stated herein.

Bacon

One’s health is related closely to what he/she has been eaten. Today, we see Americans are at 60% higher risk of getting heart disease and/or stroke due to their higher consumption of saturated fats, empty calories and cholesterol. You will be surprisingly to find that most Americans have developed chronic diseases corresponding to their increase intake in animal fat in their daily diets.


On average, American diets nowadays have been the subject of controversy, due to their frequent consumption in red meats, particularly bacon. Bacon mania (a type of salty meat) is favoured dish and is found in almost dishes, in lasagna, double bacon burgers, desserts, pizza, creamy pasta and so forth. This bacon may taste good to them, but they aren’t aware that this bacon has a bad reputation of having higher fat content, salt as well as both nitrates and nitrites (cancer-causing agent). Frequent consumption of red meat and/or bacon is not recommended as the intake can drastically give rise to cholesterol level, while increasing one’s risk of developing diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, heart and lung diseases.


Scientists believe that craving foods loaded with higher fat content such as bacon, sugary foods, cheesecake and other flattening foods may lead to compulsive eating habits. They stated that this awful eating habit resembles heroin and cocaine addiction which can lead their brains to over-activated from the taste pleasure, and thereby tempting them to eat compulsively to overcompensate for stress, agony and loneliness. Subsequently, they became obese rapidly and at the same time they have to live with a painful disease.

Chips



Chips in any form, either tortilla chips, potato chips, or corn chips cannot be considered as part of a healthy diet since they are virtually zero nutritional values but higher in trans fat content that is closely linked to the occurrence of stroke, artery hardening, high blood pressure and heart disease. Recent research suggests that foods including potato chips and French fries contain the amount of carcinogenic substance called acrylamide (cancer-causing agent) exceeding the safer recommendation by WHO (World Health Organization), as high as 300 times. But it’s questionable that this acrylamide content does not state in the dietary nutritional information of the food packaging.

Final remark:

This article is not meant to criticize Americans only to point out some of the unhealthy eating habits prevalent in today’s society which lead to my growing concern of their health condition. Specifically, this article was written to create awareness among Americans and other nations regarding healthy eating habits to boost their immune system to the optimum level.

You should follow a rule of thumb of staying healthy; eat your food in moderation and appropriate amount that is needed by your body. Overeating does no good to your health. Plant source foods should be three to one ratio of animal source foods. Higher consumption of animal meats, in general, can quickly havoc to your immune system and cause your colon and stomach to age faster than your expected age. Always remember to eat natural foods free from chemical substances (chemical fertiliser, pesticide, herbicide and etc.) for the sake of your health. Healthy eating habits that are closed to nature can preserve your body green (free from any disease) for many years to come.

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