The Evidence Is Stacking Up Against Processed Foods

The Evidence Is Stacking Up Against Processed Foods High angle view of a bowl of barbecue flavored potato chips.

    Sometimes I imagine we might sound like a broken record when we talk about all of the things that are wrong with processed foods. But since studies keep coming out that show too much processed food can literally kill you before your time, I would say we’re not overreacting. 

    What’s even more interesting is that science still doesn’t have a full grasp on the reasons processed foods are so bad for us. There’s a new theory around the block though, saying that the answer lies in our microbiome, aka our gut bacteria. Two new papers published in the BMJ study the impact of ultraprocessed foods (also called industrially manufactured foods) on the health of the average person. The results are pretty scary. They say that the more you eat food like that, the more likely you are to get sick and even die much earlier than you should.

    One of the studies says that you’re more predisposed to suffer from cardiovascular problems, while the other links processed foods to a higher risk of death from all causes.

    Processed foods also encourage overeating

    So why does this happen? We already know that chips, cookies, and all other types of unhealthy foods and snacks are loaded with sugar, fats, salt, and calories. So researchers are starting to think that all of these elements tend to put us at risk of obesity and diabetes. But a lot of scientists are starting to hone in on the issue: the health of your gut.

    All of the salt and sugar, plus the additives and lack of good digestive fiber really upset your gut microbiome. There are trillions of diverse bacteria in your intestines and colon that need to be in a state of balance for you to be okay – physically and emotionally at the same time. If the bacteria is perturbed, then you might end up overeating and suffering from chronic diseases.

    So here are the worst foods you could eat right now. And try to stop having empty calories as much as possible.

    I’m a pop culture nerd who thinks too much about fried bacon, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and life, the Universe and everything. I love food and sometimes you can see that on my hips, but I don't care that much about that.
    What I do care more about is trying to eat healthier, even though I admit that I like to indulge in my food fantasies. I’m addicted to puns, so forgive me for that when you read my articles. I now know too much about nutrition to be fun to hang out with. So long and thanks for all the fish-based omega-3 fatty acids.

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