Do you eat a diet that's high in processed foods?
If you're anything like the average person living in the Western world, the answer to that question is a resounding "YES!"
There's no debating the fact that processed foods are bad. It's been scientifically proven that many of the chemicals and ingredients found in processed foods are bad for the human body and can cause all sorts of health problems. Diabetes, obesity, cancer, you name it...It's probably been tied to the ingredients found in processed foods.
This begs the question, Why do we keep buying and eating them when we know processed foods are slowly killing us?
The answer is convenience. They're quick, they're easy and they generally taste good enough to be a passable meal.
Real Food vs. Processed Food
Let's take a quick look at the difference between real food and processed food in order to understand why processed foods are so bad.
Real food is natural food made from natural ingredients that have been minimally processed. The body instantly recognizes them as food when they're consumed. The body knows what to do with real foods and can easily break them down and send them to the right places in the body.
Processed foods are foods that are heavily processed and have chemicals added to them. They contain refined ingredients that may have been real foods at one time, but have been processed so much they pale in comparison to what they once were. These foods are difficult for the body to recognize and contain chemicals the body doesn't know how to process.
To put it simply, processed foods are poison. They're a slow-acting poison, but they're poison nonetheless.
High-Fructose Corn Syrup
One of the most nefarious ingredients found in processed foods is high-fructose corn syrup and most processed foods are packed full of it.
It's a known fact that sugar isn't good when consumed in large amounts. High-fructose corn syrup, also known as HFCS, is even worse because it's processed sugar and adds a ton of empty calories to the diet of those who consume it. Consumption of HFCS can lead to heart disease, obesity, diabetes and even cancer, as the body struggles under the extra load placed on it.
Chemicals in Processed Foods
If you've ever looked at a food and wondered whether it was processed or not, all you have to do is look at the label. If it contains ingredients you don't recognize (and probably can't pronounce), there's a pretty good chance it's a processed food.
Acesulfame potassium, dipotassium sulfate, polydextrose, sucralose. If it sounds like it would be more at home in a laboratory than it would in your dinner, you're looking at a chemical that's used in processed foods. Highly-processed foods contain chemicals that are used to preserve, color, add flavor and add texture to the food.
What the chemicals don't add is health value. They provide nothing of value to the body and in many cases they accumulate in the body, creating a toxic load. The body eventually starts to give out under the burden of the load and all sorts of health problems can arise.
Kick the Processed Foods
It isn't going to be easy, but it's time to kick the processed foods. The best time to stop eating junk is before your body starts to show signs of stress. If your body is already struggling, it's well-past time to kick the junk food habit.
Skip the processed foods and go with natural, whole foods come meal time. Your body will thank you for it!