This Is What Fast Food Really Does to Your Body

It’s scarier than you might think

Alyssa Atkinson
Jul 28, 2020 · 4 min read
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Photo by amirali mirhashemian on Unsplash

At least 1 in 4 people eat fast food every day. That means 25% of the world’s population is heading to the drive-thru on a daily basis. Fast food has become a staple in many American’s diets. And most people don’t think twice about what they’re eating. Sure, it’s not the healthiest option, but it can’t be that bad for you, right?

When I was a young girl, my sisters and I would travel to the city to play in summer basketball scrimmages. Every Saturday, we’d have 2–3 games, with a couple hour break in between them to get lunch. So, my family made a habit of grabbing fast food.

We always looked forward to the bean burritos, cheesy pizzas, and buttery breadsticks.

Each weekend, while we were chowing down, we focused only on how delicious the food was. None of us stopped to think about the possible health implications. Turns out, the truth is incredibly scary. Here’s what fast food really does to your body.

It can shorten your lifespan.

When you consume fast food on a regular basis, you can develop life threatening issues such as blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. This is because most fast food contains loads of sodium, saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol. These are used not only to preserve shelf life, but also to make the food taste better.

Therefore, to avoid developing these diseases and suffering an early death, fast food should not be a staple in your diet, no matter how busy life might get.

It can reduce brain function.

Not only does fast food affect you physically, but it can hurt you mentally as well. Research has suggested that the saturated fats found in fast food can negatively impact your memory and the functionality of your brain.

I can actually attest to experiencing this. I always seemed to have more trouble remembering plays and thinking on the fly during the basketball games I played in after lunch. Now, it could have been a mere coincidence, or a result of being tired from the morning games, but there’s also the possibility that the food I was eating was the true culprit.

So, if you want to keep your mind strong and sharp, you should focus on fueling your body with natural foods, and ditch the fast food.

It can increase anxiety.

Fast food lacks many of the nutrients that humans need for survival. One of those is omega-3 fatty acids. Without them, the mind tends to live in a more anxious state.

As someone with a type A personality who already worries more than most people, and struggles to cope with high stress situations, I can’t imagine having those feelings amplified on a regular basis by fast food.

But, there’s another unfortunate truth to all of this.

While cutting fast food out of our diets may seem like an easy concept in theory, it’s not as simple as it’s made out to be, for the following reasons:

  • People who are barely scraping by may not have the means to buy healthy food. I wish it weren’t this way, but the truth is, healthy food is typically more expensive. Fast food is cheap, and it may be all some people can afford. They may rely on fast food to feed their families, and they shouldn’t be judged for what they have to do.
  • Also, fast food can be hard to cut out of your diet, especially if you’ve been eating it for a long time. For some people, it’s not as simple as just deciding one day that they are not going to eat fast food anymore. It could take a lot of hard work, patience, and a strong support system to kick the habit for good, which some people might not have around them.

So, while it’s easy to tell people to stop eating fast food, it might not be a viable option for them.

As a young child, I had no idea that fast food was linked to all sorts of health risks. I had no idea that it could play tricks on my mind. In fact, I didn’t learn much about nutrition until I got to college. And if I hadn’t had that privilege, who knows if I would have developed the healthy habits I have today.

Therefore, it’s important to be aware of the detrimental effects of consuming fast food on a regular basis, and to educate those around you. That way, we all can live happy, healthy, and long lives.

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In Fitness And In Health

Inspiring stories related to health, fitness and the pursuit of well-being.

Alyssa Atkinson

Written by

Ohio U XC/Track alum. I love to run. I blog about food, health, lifestyle, etc. Tasty vegan recipes: nomeatfastfeet.com | YouTube: Alyssa Atkinson — Subscribe!

In Fitness And In Health

A fast-growing health and fitness community dedicated to sharing knowledge, lessons, and suggestions to living happier, healthier lives.

Alyssa Atkinson

Written by

Ohio U XC/Track alum. I love to run. I blog about food, health, lifestyle, etc. Tasty vegan recipes: nomeatfastfeet.com | YouTube: Alyssa Atkinson — Subscribe!

In Fitness And In Health

A fast-growing health and fitness community dedicated to sharing knowledge, lessons, and suggestions to living happier, healthier lives.

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