Why do you think they call it “junk food”? There is a dark side, and we are going to tell you about it. Study after study have shown that fast foods and processed foods have increased obesity in in children and adults, heart disease, and other chronic...
Why do you think they call it “junk food”? There is a dark side, and we are going to tell you about it. Study after study have shown that fast foods and processed foods have increased obesity in in children and adults, heart disease, and other chronic diseases. The part to worry about is that it is not just years of poor eating that can cause serious damage to your brain, but regular consumption can lead to mental meltdowns.
The Encyclopedia of Junk Food and Fast Food defines junk food as those commercial products including candy, bakery goods, ice cream, salty snacks, and soft drinks.
All fast foods are not junk food but certainly most are. Be careful! The more junk food you eat, the less likely you are to get the essential nutrients your body needs and relies on for proper function. Junk food can and will hurt you.
- It can cause memory and learning problems. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that healthy people who eat junk food for only 5 days performed poorly on cognitive tests that measured attention, speed, and mood. A poor diet is toxic. It causes chemical reactions that lead to inflammation in the hippocampus area of the brain which is associated with memory and special recognition. Diets that are high in sugars and bad fats can suppress the brain peptide called BDNF – brain-derived neurotrophic factor. That peptide in your brain helps with learning and memory formation. Moreover, the brain contains synapses which is responsible for learning and memory. Even overeating and eating too many calories interferes with the healthy production and functioning of these synapses.
- Increases the risk of dementia. Many people are dealing with aging parents with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. It is emotionally exhausting. In a survey of our own patients at New Vitality Centers, it was listed as the biggest fear of most of the patients. The link between junk food and dementia has been one of the scariest discoveries associated with the consumption of junk food. Insulin is produced in the pancreas and helps in the transportation of glucose to fuel the body. Insulin is also produced in the brain where it helps in carrying signals between nerve cells and forming memories. A study was done at Brown University, and it shows that too much fatty food and sugars can substantially increase the insulin levels in your body. The higher the levels of insulin, the brain stops responding to this hormone and becomes resistant to it. It restricts our ability to think, recall, or create memories. The result is the increased risk of dementia. After this was discovered, most scientist refer to Alzheimer’s as a form of “diabetes of the brain”.
- Junk food lessens your ability to control appetite. Excess consumption of trans fats that is found in fried and processed foods can send mixed signals to the brain which makes it difficult to process what you have eaten and how hungry you are. Therefore, you end up overeating. Healthy brain functions require a daily dose of essential fatty acids like omega-6 and omega-3. If these two elements are deficient there is a very high risk of attention deficit disorder, dementia, and bipolar disorder and other brain-related problems. Too much junk food replaces these with trans fats which are harder to digest. Studies show that trans fats cause inflammation in the hypothalamus, which is the part of the brain that contains neurons to control body weight. Junk food kills your appetite for healthy food! In some circumstances, the habit of overeating is like drug addiction by relying on junk foods to activate the pleasure centers of the brain.
- Junk food causes chemical changes that can lead to depression. There are many studies that show that eating foods high in sugar and bad fat changes the chemical activity of the brain making it more dependent on those foods. One study at the University of Montreal on mice showed that they suffered with withdrawal symptoms after their regular junk food diet was discontinued. In people, these withdrawal symptoms can lead to the inability to deal with stress, make you feel depressed and then you turn back to those foods to comfort yourself and handle these feelings. It is a vicious cycle, and it is difficult to stop the cycle. Too much junk food means that you do not get enough essential nutrients like the amino acid tryptophan, which increases the risk of depression. We are overloaded with new stories of the increases of people and even young people on anxiety and medication for depression.
- Junk food makes you impatient and can cause uncontrollable cravings. Eating too much sugar, even a cupcake or doughnut, can temporarily spike your blood sugar levels making you feel happy and satisfied but as soon as they return to normal you are left feeling even more irritable. Fast food is loaded, loaded, with refined carbohydrates which cause your blood sugar levels to fluctuate rapidly. If your sugar levels drop to a very low level, in comes the anxiety, confusion, and fatigue. Fast foods are loaded with artificial flavorings and preservatives like sodium benzoate that increases hyperactivity.
These sugary and bad fat foods are specially designed to be addictive in nature with high levels of salts, sugars, and fats that make you crave them! The addictive nature of fast food can make your brain crave them even when you are not hungry.
For more information contact: New Vitality Centers
665 S. Kings Ave, Brandon, FL 33511