Why junk food is bad for you

The junk food category includes food items that are high in calories and nutritionally deficient. In recent years junk food, convenience foods and fast foods consumed within the United States have increased dramatically with 25% of Americans now eating primarily unhealthy diets. This has happened concurrently with the rise of epidemics of a variety of chronic diseases , and is a factor in many reasons to why having junk food can be harmful.


Foods that are processed play a key part in the growing obesity epidemic. By 2050, the percentage for obesity within the U.S. is expected to be 42 percent, as per researchers of Harvard University. Children who consume fast food regularly as component of their meals consume more calories, fats, as well as processed sugars and less fiber than children who do not consume fast food frequently. The junk food that is included in these kids’ diets is responsible for 187 calories extra per day, which translates into six additional kilograms of excess weight every year. Being overweight can increase your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and a host of other health issues that are chronic.


The insulin levels rise when you consume refined sugars, like those found in soft drinks white flour, soft drinks and other foods that are devoid of the nutrients and fiber needed to efficiently metabolize carbohydrates. Consuming junk food throughout the day can cause constant high levels of insulin that eventually cause cells not to recognize this vital hormone, leading to the condition that is known as insulin resistance. Then, obesity and type 2 diabetes can develop. From the 80s onward, Type 2 diabetes, which was a minor issue in teenagers increased to 15.


Junk food could be linked to depression. The study was published in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2015, which used information from 70,000 women who were postmenopausal discovered that diets with high levels of the glycemic index (including those that contain refined grains and sugars, like junk food were more likely to be the cause of developing depression. Contrarily eating a diet that contained vegetables, fruits whole grains, whole grains, and lactose which is a sugar found in dairy products, including milk have been proven to protect against the development of depression. The study concluded that in postmenopausal women, eating a diet like junk food can be an indicator of depression risk. Researchers also noted that more research should be conducted to determine if the same findings would be applicable to other populations of people, like young women and males.

Nutrient Deficiencies

Processing that strips nutrients, minerals, and fiber turns junk food to be the source of empty calories, which nutritionists denigrate. Children who consume a large amount of junk food can develop nutritional deficiencies which cause lower energy, mood swings, insomnia and low academic performance and other health problems as per researchers at the University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension.

Sodium and Heart Disease

A high level of sodium is the most prominent feature of the majority of junk food items and are one of the major reasons for the excessive salt consumption that is typical of the Western diet and causes high blood pressure as well as kidney, liver and heart ailments according to Harvard Health Publications. The average American consumes 5 to 10-fold more sodium than 2,300 milligrams a day recommended according to the U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans. With the rising rates in high blood pressure in Americans this level ought to be lower approximately 1,500 milligrams a day70% of adults. But, the pattern since 1988 indicates that people with hypertension are less likely to follow a diet low in sodium nowadays than did back in 1988.

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