Still, have you really, truly given thought to the implications of eating a fast food meal? You know that it's packed with fat, loaded with sodium, and so on, but it doesn't hurt to dig deeper and get the full story.
Just The Facts
Let's start with steroids, hormones and antibiotics, which are part of your fast food meal whether you know it or not.
- Antibiotics are fed to livestock to keep them from getting sick in close quarters where much of low-quality meat comes from.
- Steroids and hormones are fed to livestock to make them fatter while accelerating their growth.
- More antibiotics and antibiotic-resistant bacteria are thus passed on to you. In fact, 80% of all antibiotics in the United States are found in our food. The consequences? Resistance to beneficial antibiotics, depletion of good bacteria in the stomach, obesity and intestinal discomfort.
Ever heard of tertiary butylhydroquinone? Maybe not, but it's a common additive during the processing of poultry and meat. The FDA wouldn't even give it approval for many years because five grams of it could kill you. Even just one gram of it can cause nausea and breathing difficulty, for starters.
Ah, sugar. It shows up in fast food in places you wouldn't even expect. Rest assured too much of it can lead to a variety of unhealthy issues.
- It's not a surprise, for example, that a Whopper includes 68% of your daily sodium intake. What's surprising is that it also includes 11 grams of sugar.
- Then there's soda. Most sodas are made with high fructose corn syrup, which increases bad cholesterol, uric acid and fat. It can also lead to hypertension, high blood pressure, and more.
Some other things to consider:
- Much of fast food is made with polyunsaturated vegetable oils, which of the omega-6 variety can lead to cancer, blood clots, inflammation, high blood pressure, weight gain, digestive problems — you get the picture.
- The excess cholesterol found in fast food can add up over time, and one out of six Americans already suffers from high cholesterol. A simple breakfast biscuit with egg and sausage can use up 87% of your daily value of cholesterol.
- Red meats and processed meats increase your risk of colon cancer.
If you're looking to take your health to another level, dropping fast food is a great first step. Follow up this step by contacting one of the professional trainers at the Downtown Athletic Club of Amarillo. We can help you start an exercise routine and guide you on what to eat to better fuel your body.