FAST-FOOD HAS CHANGED: WERE YOU READY?
With the hectic lifestyles and time consuming acts people engage in, timesaving products are in high demand. Fast foods are relatively the first option when it comes to feeding. There has been an increase in the rate of growth in consumer’s expenditures on fast food. Fast food is the name given to food that can be prepared and served quickly. Fast food might seem harmless (said nobody ever!), satisfy your hunger and be cheap but it has other consequences beyond just gaining some kilos. It has been reported previously that fast foods independently purchased by adolescents are often unhealthy, forbidden or frowned upon by parents.
What is the fast-food climate?
Eight in 10 Americans eat fast food at least once a month and half eats it once a week. Today, more than 160,000 fast- food restaurants feed more than 50 million Americans each and every day, generating sales of more than $110 billion dollars annually. Leaving home cooked meals for snacks is the major trend, for over 25 years, people have depended on burgers, fries, pizza and sweets than we do on home cooked meals. As good as fast food seem, its effects is on the high side, unlike in the 1950s less than 10% of Americans were overweight
According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, the generally persistent upward trend of Americans’ weight began after World War II. In the 1950s less than 10% of Americans were overweight or obese. As fast- food restaurants and processed foods took control of our diets, the numbers increased. So much so that now more than 60% of American’s are considered overweight or obese and believe it or not, more than 50% of Canadians are now overweight or obese as well.
What about making food choices?
Making food choices can be complex and influenced by many factors that affect our choice of foods. They include the following:
- Taste rules: majorly, we choose what we eat because we like the way it tastes or the way it feels (crunches or melts usually). Taste preferences started since we were born, as babies, we have preferences for sugar and fats. Therefore, it is inborn but nevertheless, eating healthily requires discipline. You can teach yourself to love the taste of healthy food and know easy and healthy eating techniques.
- Favorite foods: most of our favorite foods are food that give us joy and only few people have fruits and vegetables as their favorite. However, we can keep our favorite food as part of healthy diets by changing your tastebuds to enjoy leafy greens as a favourite (Yes! It is possible!)
- How it looks: Most times how yummy a food looks attracts us to it. Most times even when we are full, we get attracted to some foods again because they look too good to be ignored which has nothing to do with hunger or being full.
- Cost and convenience: people that do not have time for shopping and cooking choose time saving foods. If you follow the trend, then people in this category tend to rely more on fast foods which are unhealthy for them. For your health sake, you can visit quick serve restaurants where you get nutritious soup, salad and sandwich that won’t sabotage your diet.
- Too many choices: studies have reported the greater the variety of foods, the more we tend to eat. In addition, meals that are monotonous do not lead to the act of overeating. Most people consume food the way they see it. A visit to the buffet restaurant, they end up sampling all the food they could lay their hands on. To satisfy all form of curiosity, keep the variety of food to the barest minimum level.
- Social settings: Humans tend to eat more outside the house. Some studies reported that the size of food we eat increase with the number of people at the table. Also, when you dine with people that are conscious about their meals, we tend to grow the habit which will help us a lot.
More on obesity because not enough can be said about it right now! (It’s killing us!)
Obesity: fast food is the number 1 leading cause of obesity in the world. Studies have shown that obesity rate has increased drastically and this is linked to consumption of fast food and sugar. In the United States unlike in the early 1960s when obesity among adults was 13 percent while in 2016, it rose to 40 percent and fast food were often blamed for this increase. Fast foods contain high carbohydrate and fat which makes it become the biggest contributor to obesity and people increasing in weight.
What’s in your food (or not in your food)?
Contents of the fast foods: poisonous ingredients are often contained within different types of fast foods. Majorly these poisonous contents of fast foods are actually poisonous to the human body until it is combined or sprayed with something else.
Low in nutrition value: in most cases, these fast foods are always low in quality nutrition values. it lacks major essentials required by the body such as vitamins and minerals.
Artificial trans-fat: most fast foods add artificial trans-fat to their food and most of these trans-fat is created through harsh chemical process. Which are not suitable for human consumption.
How it’s affecting you…
Brain cells and functions: Abandoning fast foods can help protect your brain cells and improve your brain functions. The consumption of organic foods provides you with a lot of nutrients, anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals that contribute to proper bodily health in one way or the other. It also protects the fat in your brain, improve things like concentration, memory, focus and energy.
Want more reading?
Bartleby writing, 2008. Literature reviews on fast food industry
Kumar H, palaha R and Kaur, A. 2013. Study of consumption, behavior and awareness of fast food among university hostlers.
Christ S. 2019. stop eating fast food: why fast food is slowly killing you
Tidy, C and Jackson, C. 2016. Healthy eating
Western D. 26 reasons to finally stop eating junk food.
Zelman K. M. why we eat the foods we do
More About Christopher James Lawrence
Christopher James Lawrence is a Co-Founder of the Healthy Transformations Program with Dr. Mike Breen. He is also the Chief Value Officer and Founder of Change My Life Coaching and Co-Founder of Change My Business Coaching — a fast growing whole-life, leadership and business coaching company, and the only one of it’s kind. He is also the author of “Go Beyond Passion: Discover Your Dream Job”. Christopher is a Certified Master Coach Practitioner (CMCP), trainer and facilitator, and a passionate public speaker that truly cares about the success of each and every single person he comes into contact with. You can reach him here.