Processed food is food that, in order to increase its market value, has been seriously manipulated during manufacturing in order to give it a longer shelf life. Chips, cereals, and soda are some examples of snacks that fit this category. Bologna, granola bars, prepared meals and juice concentrates are more foods that fit this description.
The problem is that these foods are usually loaded with sugar, salt and saturated fats. With a processed food laden diet, you get too much of these wrong things: sugar, fat, salt, saturated fats, and too little of the things required for optimum health: vitamins, minerals and fiber. If you eat a lot of processed foods, sadly, you are trading what you most need for additives you do not need.
You will be best served by your food choices if they are natural. The closer your wheat is to how it looked on the stalk, for example, complete with its fiber-rich bran and vitamin-loaded wheat germ, the better it will be for your health, wellbeing and longevity. This is the same for any food product: keep it close to nature and it will be just what your body needs.
Processed foods may seem cheap and tasty, but in fact they have a hefty price tag. Diseases associated with being overweight are, of course, exacerbated by weighing too much but also boosted by having too much of certain types of unhealthy foods. Highly processed foods lead to obesity, cavities, constipation, bad breath, headaches, , heart disease, digestive problems, to name just a few of the health risks.
Diabetes is on the rise in America, and, besides contributors from your heredity, overconsumption of highly processed foods is a major reason for this rise. In case you don’t know, some of the side-effects of having this all-too-common disease are: various eye problems like cataracts and glaucoma, amputation of limbs – particularly feet, damage to heart and blood vessels, nerve damage, impotence, kidney disease and being prone to infection.
The more closely your food resembles what it looked, smelled, and tasted like straight out of the ground, the healthier it is. Keep your foods as natural as you can and you will reap the rewards of improved health. The more natural a food product is, the more good stuff you will be giving yourself and the more bad stuff you will be avoiding. It’s a win-win!
About the Author
Margo Smith graduated with a B.S. degree from BYU. She lives along the Wasatch Front and loves the beauty and magnificence of the Rocky Mountains she calls home. She looks at the world around her when writing articles about an assortment of topics from organic food to online colleges to homelessness in America.