What Eating Processed Foods Really Do to Your Body?

Do you know that ultra-processed food can be just as harmful to your body as smoking cigarettes? 

Yes, today I'm going to share with you the shocking truth about the impact of ultra-processed foods on your body and how you can avoid them.

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What are Ultra-Processed Foods?

First of all, let's define what ultra-processed food is. Ultra-processed food is a food category that has five or more ingredients added to it.

Mostly these ingredients are artificial chemicals like preservatives, salts, sweeteners, high amounts of sugars, as well as preservatives that make this food tasty as well as last longer on the shelves.

Now most people will think "Oh I don't eat any of this food". But most of the food industry will make this food look as natural as possible and most of the people are using Ultra-processed food and they are not even aware of it. 

So, that's the reason it is first important to understand what is ultra-processed food, the list of ultra-processed foods, and why it's actually harmful to your body.

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Ultra-Processed Foods You Might Be Eating Regularly

Now let's talk about the list of ultra-processed foods that you might be eating on a regular basis.

White Bread

If you are getting white bread from the majority of grocery stores, then it has been ultra-processed.

Because it has a wide range of ingredients added to it, especially salt and stabilizers to make the bread last longer. 

Some people even claim that they've kept bread from these companies for years and it hasn't gone bad. That's why it's important to look at the ingredients list if you're buying white bread from a regular grocery store.

Fruit Juice Drinks

Many of these drinks labeled as fruit juice drinks from grocery stores do not have real juices. They are either made from artificial flavors, pulps, or chemicals added to make them taste like fruits, but they are not actually fruits. 

So again, look at the ingredients of the fruit juice drink before you buy it.

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Protein/Granola Bars

These protein bars are very popular snack items. But what people don't know is that they have several extra ingredients added to make them palatable. 

They add a lot of sugar, preservatives, and chemicals to make them look and taste very healthy.

Fruit Yogurts

A lot of yogurts available in grocery stores are not actually made with real ingredients either. They are made with milk solids, have added preservatives, flavoring agents, as well as high amounts of sugar. 

So make sure you're looking at your yogurts and where you're buying them from. Because they can be ultra-processed and actually harm your body.

Ready-to-Eat Snacks

All the ready-to-eat snacks that you are getting in the grocery stores like chips, cookies, and cakes – all of these things are ultra-processed.

Because they have several ingredients added to them, including too much sugar, salt, flavoring agents, preservatives, and other agents to make them soft and easy to eat.

Breakfast Cereals

A lot of people are consuming cereals that they think are healthy as a breakfast option.

But what they don't know is that these cereals have been added with a lot of artificial agents. 

Sugar is number one on the list, followed by soy, corn, artificial flavors, and preservatives. So it is important to make sure you're looking at your breakfast cereal box and counting the number of ingredients added to them.

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Soft Drinks, Sodas & Energy Drinks

These are again made with mostly artificial ingredients. They don't have many real ingredients added to them, especially a lot of preservatives and a lot of sugars or artificial sweeteners. And these are actually worse than real sugar for you.

 

Ultra-processed foods are Common

See, this is just a snapshot of the ultra-processed foods which the majority of households are consuming. If you're consuming any of these things, then this is literally like smoking cigarettes on a daily basis.

 

Now, the next question most people have is: Are ultra-processed foods really that bad? What does the research say? 

So, let's talk about what ultra-processed food does to your body and why it's harmful.

What Does Ultra-Processed Food Do to Your Body?

Basically, the ingredients in ultra-processed food are high in sugar and low in fiber, and it has been shown that they can cause weight gain. 

There was a research study conducted with two groups of people. One group only ate ultra-processed food, and the second group ate no processed food. They made sure both groups had the same amount of calories, fats, carbohydrates, and proteins in their diet. 

To their shock, what they noticed was that even though they were eating the same amount of calories and macronutrients, the people on the ultra-processed food diet actually gained more weight than the people who were not eating processed food.

 All this ultra-processed food causes insulin spikes, and insulin spikes pack all this food as fat in your body, and that's the reason you gain weight.

Ultra-processed Food and Heart Disease

The second research study was conducted in China. It was seen that people who are consuming ultra-processed food on a regular basis had a 25% higher chance of getting heart attacks, strokes, as well as high blood pressure issues. 

So, definitely, ultra-processed food causes too much inflammation in your heart, and that leads to heart attacks as well as strokes.

Ultra-Processed Food and High Blood Pressure

The next research study was done on 10,000 middle-aged females.

Here, it was seen that females who were consuming ultra-processed food on a regular basis had a 40% higher chance of having high blood pressure compared to other people.

Ultra-Processed Food and Cancer Risk

There are also some research studies that have associated consuming ultra-processed food with cancers. 

The reason is that all of these chemicals, preservatives, and artificial sweeteners that have been added to these ultra-processed foods have been associated with cancer.

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The Bottom Line: Ultra-Processed Food is a Threat to Your Health

To sum it up, ultra-processed food is a serious threat to your health. It's loaded with sugar, low in fiber, and linked to weight gain, heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, and even cancer risk.

So you see, this ultra-processed food not only causes weight gain but also causes heart attacks, and strokes, as well as it can contribute to causing cancers in the future.

That's the reason it's very important to avoid ultra-processed food as much as possible. 

The good news is there are plenty of delicious and healthy alternatives readily available.

So, swap out ultra-processed foods for real, whole foods that will nourish your body and keep you feeling your best.