Fast Food – Junk Food

What is Fast Food?
Can we call it Junk Food?

WHY do we need Fast Food?
Where did Fast Food come from?

WHY is Fast Food so popular now?
What is Junk Food doing to our body?

Definition of Fast Food

Fast food is considered as the empty calorie food.
In other words, food with little or no micronutrients. (1)

That means the food is not going to nourish and support our body for true health and vitality.

Cooked food sold in snack bars and restaurants as a quick meal or to be taken away.
Concise Oxford English Dictionary (2)

1. of, relating to, or specializing in food that can be prepared and served quickly.
2. designed for ready availability, use, or consumption and with little consideration given to quality or significance.
Merriam-Webster Dictionary (3)

Hot food such as hamburgers that is quick to cook or is already cooked and is therefore served very quickly in a restaurant.
Cambridge Dictionary (4)

Fast food is hot food, such as hamburgers and chips, that you can obtain from particular types of restaurant and which is served quickly after you order it.

Food that requires little preparation before being served.
Collins English Dictionary (5)

Definition of Junk Food

If you refer to food as junk food you mean that it is quick and easy to prepare but is not good for your health.
Collins English Dictionary – COBUILD (6)

Food that is low in nutritional value, often highly processed or ready-prepared and eaten instead of or in addition to well-balanced meals.
Collins English Dictionary – British

Any of various snack foods processed as with chemical additives and of low nutritional value.
Collins English Dictionary – American (6)

1. Food that is high in calories but low in nutritional content.
2. Something that is appealing or enjoyable but of little or no real value.
Merriam-Webster Dictionary (7)

Food with little nutritional value.
Concise Oxford English Dictionary (2)

Food that is unhealthy but is quick and easy to eat.
Cambridge Dictionary (8)

Do we need all these definitions to tell us the Truth about Fast Foods?

Would it be true to say Fast Food is Food that is made Fast and eaten Fast?

Would it be true to say that the intention behind Fast Food is to make it cheap so more people will buy it?

Would it be true to say that Fast Food means we are not interested in the calories?
Would it be true to say that nutritional value is not on the radar for Fast Food?
Would it be true to say that Fast Food was designed for our busy Fast Lane Life?
Would it be true to say that Fast Food is unhealthy for the human body?

Would it be true to say that most of us are not interested in the detail about the processed food we choose to eat?

Would it be true to say that chemical additives in our Fast Food snacks keep us going back for more?

Would it be true to say that Fast Food is appealing to us because we have made it part of our lifestyle choice?

Would it be true to say that ready prepared Fast Foods allow us more time on social media and TV watching?

Would it be true to say that Fast Food is all about quick quick with no attention to the consequences whatsoever?

Would it be true to say we have created a world of NOW and this instant wanting is reflected in the way we demand Fast Food to be served Fast?

We all know junk means it is useless and considered of little value.

Can we agree that most of us call Fast Food, Junk Food because that is what it is?

Can we be honest enough to admit we accept putting junk food into our belly as quality of health is not something we want to take Responsibility for?

Fast Food Restaurants

A fast food restaurant is a specific type of restaurant that is defined by minimal table service and cuisine that is quickly prepared.
Fast food restaurants are also known as quick service restaurants.

Fast Food Restaurant Chains

Fast food restaurant chain is a group of related restaurants based in different locations that are operated either by franchise agreements or under shared corporate ownership.
Normally restaurants within a chain are not only built to an architectural prototype of the required format but also offer customary services and menu.

Fast food restaurant chains are popular and mostly found close to shopping malls, tourist areas and highways. (9)

Quick Service Restaurants

Over the last decade, Quick Service Restaurants have grown at a much faster pace than any other restaurant segment in the industry. They are characterised by fast food cuisines with average quality food, minimal to no table service, limited menus and price of meals ranging from $3 to $6 per person.

Quick Service Restaurants are typically part of a restaurant chain or franchise operations, with drive-thru outlets for most of these chains.

In modern Quick Service Restaurants, fast food is highly processed and prepared in bulk using standardized cooking procedures. (10)

198.9 billion U.S. dollars – revenue of the Quick Service Restaurant industry.

2020 – forecast to reach $223 billion.

According to the World Health Organization, the unregulated frequency of weekly visits to Quick Service Restaurants is causing Obesity and its related health problems in the United States. (11)


186,977 franchised Quick Service Restaurants in the United States.
28,000 growth in ten years. (12)

Quick Service Restaurants include –

Beverage bars
Carry out sandwich shops
Carry out service shops with on premises baking of donuts, cookies and bagels
Fast Food restaurants
Ice cream parlours
Limited-service eating places
Pizza-delivery establishments (13)


Is this just a big fat number to us or does it mean more?

We have just over 2 years and this is the prediction for the Fast Food Industry.

Is this simply a confirmation of the fact that things are getting worse for our health?

Is this a clear indication that things are on the rise and not slowing down regardless of all the health studies saying Fast Foods are harming us?

Of course, for those who choose profit before people, this sector would provide shareholders with jumbo returns, as people are going to continue living fast and demanding fast foods.

So when is it going to slow down, stop or take a U turn?
How much more pressure are we going to put on our health systems?

Are we concerned that our children as young as age 10 need hip replacements due to Obesity?

Are we interviewing all the dentists who are pulling out young children’s teeth due to bad diets?

What are we willing to feed our kids and are we paying attention to this?
When do we move from the pure baby foods to Fast Foods for our children?

WHY do many of our kids behave differently when they eat Fast Foods?
WHY are children raised on Fast Foods and never have homemade meals?
WHY have we become a nation, a world, obsessed with Fast Foods?
WHY do we keep creating more and more types of Fast Foods?

WHY are we looking for the next Quick Service Restaurant to give us the fix?

WHY are we not seeing that Fast Foods is like a drug and keeps us wanting more?

At what cost are we allowing and accepting this way of living that we know is not working, simply because our body tells us so?

Fast Casual Restaurants

Relatively new and rapidly growing, Fast Casual Restaurant is somewhere between fast food restaurants and casual dining restaurants.

This hybrid of two concepts provide counter service and offer more customized freshly prepared and high-quality food than traditional Quick Service Restaurants, all in up scaled and inviting ambiance. However, they have minimal table service and the cost of meals range from $8 to $15.
Most often, fast casual restaurants do not have drive-thru outlets.

Consumer shift towards Fast Casual Restaurants is primarily due to the fact that people with higher disposable income are inclined more towards quality and hygienic food, unlike less nutrition junk food in most of the Quick Service outlets. (10)

Are we aware of the detail that goes into getting our Fast Food Fast?

Are we aware that our Quick Service world has a clear expectation when they join the drive-thru or in-store queue for Fast Food?

Are we aware that if a line is moving because of good speed of service, we do not mind waiting?

Are we aware that if there are just two people in front taking 10 minutes, we will be annoyed by the time we get the service?

Are we aware that there is work going into the strategy for increasing speed of service like measuring the number of steps it takes to deliver food to the customers?

Are we aware of the micro detail like the number of footsteps and arm stretches it takes to get food to customers?

Are we aware that making more profit fast is why so much focus and effort is put into the detail?


History of Fast Food

The name and location of the first fast food restaurant in the world, is lost to history.

Middle Ages quick, inexpensive food was abundant in large cities of Europe, where fast food establishments of the day fed locals and tourists.

The history of fast food in America runs parallel to the invention of the car.
Most people today think of fast food as anything being served out of a window and into a car.

1916 – First fast food hamburger restaurant opened in Wichita, Kansas, USA.

1920’s Curb Service – fast food restaurant employee delivers food from the restaurant to waiting customers outside in their cars.

1940’s – Carhop person delivering the food to cars wearing roller skates to speed service.
Drive-through windows soon followed.

1950’s – Fast Food industry in full swing, incorporating and perfecting marketing strategies borrowed from earlier days.
Fast Food franchises had become popular dining stops because of –

Easily Recognized Signage
Standardized Menus
Unified Advertising Strategies

1951 – History of Fast Food in America was secured when the Merriam-Webster dictionary included the term for the first time.

1960’s – Children’s menu became a standardized part of popular restaurant chains.
Advertisers started to focus on marketing at children.
With the family-oriented culture in America, focused heavily on children first, fast food restaurant excursions were fun and affordable family affairs offering culinary delights for all ages.

Burgers and fries were the main foods of the industry but today’s menu is offering much more.
Almost anything can be eaten on the go, using very little cutlery, if any.

Some of the most popular newer Fast Foods are –

Chicken Nuggets
Hot Dogs
Ice Cream
Onion Rings
Speciality Sandwiches (14)

Fast Food Market will reach $690 billion in 2022. (1)

Hello – can we stop and pause?

$690,000,000,000 in 5 years time.

What is this saying to us?
What exactly is this spelling out to us?
What is this telling us about our Fast Food world?
What is the future figure predicting about our health?
What is this figure presenting about the way we are living?

WHY are we demanding food that has little nutritional value?

2 billion in our world are now overweight or obese.
Global Nutrition Report – 2017

41 million children under 5 overweight.
Global Nutrition Report – 2017 (15)

10 million children under 5 in Africa now classified as overweight. (16)

World Obesity

Obesity rates in the United States, South Pacific and Persian Gulf are among the highest in the world.

Obesity is defined as having a body mass index over 30.

Over the last 35 years, Obesity has grown fastest in countries throughout Latin America, Africa and Asia. (17)

2011 – 2016

The Obesity epidemic is inextricably linked to the sales of packaged foods, which grew 25% worldwide.
Euromonitor – Market Research

Fast Food grew 30%.
Euromonitor – Market Research (17)

Carbonated soft drinks have doubled since 2000.
World Health Organisation (17)


Zion Market Research new report titled –

Fast Food Market by Type

American Food

Global Industry Perspective, Comprehensive Analyses and Forecast, 2016 – 2022.

According to the report, Global Fast Food market was valued at over US $539.63 billion in 2016.

Globalization and urbanization had heavily impacted on the intake routine of consumers and fascinated them towards fast food.

Fast Food Restaurants can be classified on the basis of their infrastructure, namely Quick Service Restaurants and Roadside Vendors.

Quick Service Restaurants are grasping the Fast Food market owing to their authenticity and hygiene.
Strict government regulations and pollution may hamper the functioning of the roadside vendors.

The Fast Food market is mainly driven by the rise in the pace of life of the urban population and their requirement for inexpensive and faster options for their meals.

The languid population who expect their meals delivered at their doorstep also drives it.

Appetizing Fast Food with desired flavours may positively lift up the Fast Food market in the forecast period.

Rising health awareness among the consumers may impede the growth of the Fast Food industry in the foreseeable future.

Rise in trend of online ordering and app-based companies offering delivery services could open up more opportunities in future.

Easily accessible healthy Fast Food may provide huge options to the health-conscious populace bolstering the Fast Food market growth in the upcoming years. (1)

Why Do People Eat Fast Food?

67% eat Fast Food because it is convenient.

32% eat it because it is cheap.

31% just like eating Fast Food.

13% have a lack of other options. (18)

Are we opting for convenience above quality of life?
Are we saying cheap holds more value than our precious body?
Are we being really honest when we say we just ‘like eating Fast Food’?

WHY do we seem to just give in when it comes to eating Fast Food on the go?


Fast Food generates over $570 billion in revenue – bigger than the economic value of most countries. (19)

Consumers of Fast Foods focus on –

1. Taste
2. Price
3. Quality

The food is often highly processed and prepared in an assembly line.
The restaurants focus on consistency of experience, affordability and speed. (19)


Demand is driven by consumer tastes and personal income.

Consumers still looking for convenience of eating out but are drawn to the low prices of Fast Food over table-service restaurants.

94% consumers in U.S. say Taste is the most important factor when it comes to restaurant experiences.

Health is less of a consideration as nutritional quality of meals offered by many popular Fast Food chains do not have this quality. (20)

Taste (21)

1. the sensation of flavour perceived in the mouth and throat on contact with a substance.
2. the faculty of perceiving taste.
3. a small portion of food or drink taken as a sample.
4. a brief experience of something, conveying its basic character.
5. a person’s liking for particular flavours.
6. a person’s tendency to like or be interested in something.
7. The ability to discern what is of good quality or of a high aesthetic standard.

So here we have it – lots of meanings for one word.

What is it about us humans that we are wanting more of this sensation, which is in the mouth or throat then boom, it’s gone?

What is it that is going on inside us that makes us want more of the same?
What is it about the taste of Fast Food that makes us go back for more fast?

WHY do most of us find it hard or almost impossible to stop even when we know something is not right?

WHY do we consistently seek more different tastes when it comes to food?

WHY are we so hooked on cookery shows and the next cook book when it comes to Taste?

The taste of Fast Food is carefully controlled.
A lot of flavours are there for a reason – and not natural.

A strawberry milkshake bought in a popular burger chain contains no real strawberry.

The ‘strawberry flavour’ which is just one of the ingredients on the milkshake list, contains over 20 different chemicals. (22)

The Fat, Sugar and Salt Combination

Some people get addicted to the taste of popular Fast Food because it contains just the right mixture of fat, sugar and salt to set off the pleasure chemicals in the brain.

Studies in the lab on rats who were fed a diet that consisted of 25% sugar, when the sugar was removed the rats become anxious, they suffered with shaking and their teeth chattered – similar to people going through a nicotine or morphine withdrawal.

The researchers also noticed long lasting changes in brain chemistry with foods that had a combination of fat, sugar and salt which led them to conclude that there was a possibility that we can become physically addicted to eating Fast Food. (22)


Do we need to test out on rats what we already know?
Do we need to wait for more studies to get us to this same point?

WHY are we not funding Independent Research on real humans?
WHY are we not demanding more support on food that is harming?

Can we simply join the dots and stick our common sense hat on?

Would it be true to say that sugar is a killer to the human body?

What happens chemically when we combine sugar with fat and salt?

What if this mix is like a bomb going off inside us and causing havoc?

Does it taste better because there is no effort or responsibility to cook?

Does it taste better because we have never bother to take care of ourselves?

Does it taste better because we don’t think we have the skills to cook a meal?

Does it taste better because it gives us the exact feel good chemicals to do the job?

Does it taste better because we can ignore all the horrible stuff going on in our lives?

Does it taste better because we have found a cheap way to feed the family?

Does it taste better because let’s face it, we are exhausted at the end of the day?

Does it taste better because we will not get into the cooking and washing up stuff?

Does it taste better because we can wash it down with a 22oz soda full of sugar?

Does it taste better because we can afford to eat like this a few times a week?

Does it taste better because it fills us up fast and that’s one less thing to think about?

Does it taste better because our kitchen needs to look clean at all times and this helps?

WHY are we not asking more and more questions to get to the Truth?
WHY are we just busy stuffing down more foods that we know make us feel dull?

WHY are we hell bent on eating the next Fast Food as it just suits our lifestyle?

WHY have we got into the habit of overeating when it comes to Fast Food?
WHY have we not made our body a number one Priority in Life?
WHY have we not made the effort to have a real Foundation to support us?

WHY are we living with the tension of Sitting on the Fence and not taking action when it comes to our True Health and Well-Being?

What is it about us that goes for the next burger and drowns it with a jumbo shake?
What is it about us humans that love to just eat and eat with no regard to our body?
Where did this all start and WHY are we so complacent about our health?

Fast Eating, not just Fast Food, can increase the risk of acid reflux after meals.
Researchers say people who eat their food quickly are more likely to suffer from GERD – gastroesophageal reflux disease.
Study presented at Digestive Disease Week, Orlando, Florida – 17 – 23 May 2003 (23)


Are we not learning anything after 14 years, when this study was telling us there is a link between fast eating and what we all know is Heartburn?

We think we are Intelligent1 but what sort of Intelligence2 are we aligned to that never seems to consider the root cause of our ills that we create?

WHY is it that we have found Solutions to deal with our acid reflux issue but never once asked WHY on earth are we getting Heartburn in the first place?

Could it be that our body is simply not designed to wolf down food at a fast pace?

Could it be possible that our digestive system has no time to register what has been eaten if we eat quick quick?

Could it be possible that the complex internal system in our body needs space to work out what we are shoving into our mouth at a marathon speed?

Top Continents for Fast Foods

North America

2015 – Largest Fast Food market.

Mainly due to growing drift towards pocket food.

Reluctance for cooking on daily basis has led to high demand for Fast Food. (1)

North America – a third of all men and women are obese.
Global Nutrition Report – 2017 (15)


Second largest market for Fast Food.

Hectic lifestyle – people prefer quickly accessible food such as pocket sandwiches and burgers.

There has been some apparent swing from Fast Food towards the healthy and natural food which may impact on the growth of the Fast Food market in the coming years.
Some restaurants in Europe had included healthy Fast Foods such as salad and baked fries. (1)

Asia Pacific

In the forecast period, Asia Pacific expected to take the major portion of the Fast Food market.

Growing number of Fast Food vendors due to surging demand for western and local Fast Food stimulates the growth of the market in this region.

Asian food is gaining demand across the world owing to intense flavours and bold taste.

Rising dual and disposable income predominantly in India and China likely to fuel the growth.

Increasing inclination towards western Fast Food brands especially in India.

Young population adventurous for tasting new products, therefore demand for diverse Fast Food is rising. (1)

Latin America

Huge potential for chained development in the forecast period.

Latin American food has secured their position on the global market owing to diverse flavours, which is predicted to thrive the market growth over years to come.

Increasing preference for packed food and ready to eat food has fostered the demand for Fast Food in Latin America. (1)

Middle East and Africa

Owing to improving living standards along with leisurely growing disposable income

in this region – evident growth for Fast Food market.

So what is it about us that demands ‘pocket food’?

Are we drifting off the radar and do we need to get back on track?

WHY do we need this type of ‘pocket food’ to keep us going?
WHY is our lifestyle so hectic and what are we going to do about it?
WHY have we got a reluctance to cooking food on a daily basis?

Do we need to find out by asking more questions or just carry on?

Can we get real and admit that baked fries don’t cut it, as we are craving the fried stuff so it is not really a healthy option that we can stick to?

Can we get super honest and say that chips, baked or fried are not really healthy?

Could it be possible that we need bold and intense flavours because we are always seeking for more ways to stimulate ourselves?

What choices are we making every day that makes us unwilling to take care of our body by cooking foods that can support it?

Do we need to look at our quality of Sleep that may be affected by Fast Food?

Do we have a one unified definition of what ‘healthy’ actually is in our world?

Would it be honest to say, we as world are way off the mark when it comes to agreeing and living the word in its pure essence, which is the true original meaning?

Next –

WHY are eastern countries jumping on the bandwagon and moving away from their traditional home cooked foods?

Could it be possible that the rise of illness and disease in these countries is linked to the diet and lifestyle that many of them want and crave?

Could it be possible that the rise in social media has contributed to different needs for those who in the past would be content with their way of living?

Could it be possible that rising disposable income is all about spending more and this is what is causing the drift in many at the expense of the human frame?

WHY are the Youth of these nations wanting to be adventurous with their taste in food without considering the consequences?

What is now missing for them that they are wanting Fast Foods?

WHY is packed and ready to eat food so popular in countries where they have an abundance of natural food to sustain a more vital body?


1 in 4 Americans is obese. (17)

Americans overall appetite for Fast Food is as strong as ever.
CDC found that adult consumption of Fast Food mirrors what it is seeing in kids.

34% of all children and adolescents aged 2 to 19 consume Fast Food on a given day.

1 in 3 kids eating burgers, fries, pizza and other Fast Foods. (24)

50 million people are served daily by Fast Food Restaurants.

44% eating out at least once a week. (25)

The rate of Fast Food consumption has not slowed in over 15 years. (26)

Many of the leading Fast Food brands specialize in high-calorie foods, such as burgers, pizza and fried chicken. (11)


Average American spends $1,200 a year on Fast Food.

Burgers and fried chicken twice EVERY week.

Study carried out showed burgers, pizza and fried chicken are the most common meals.

The report found many who go for the Fast Food option because they are too busy or too impatient to create a wholesome home-cooked meal.

50% who took part in the poll admitted they were already overweight, obese or morbidly obese.

We are living in a generation that yearns for a quick fix.
People want high-speed technology and quick information – that means Fast Food continues to fit in nicely.
Spokesman for Market Researchers who commissioned the study (27)

70% opt for Fast Food up to three times a week in this detailed study.

40% admitted to eating 2 whole pizzas, 2 burgers or 3 burritos in one sitting.

Common reasons for choosing the take-out menu include –

Busy Lifestyle
Ease of having it as a family
Easy to eat in front of the television
Tastes better than home-cooking

1 in 3 admit their need for a quick fix dinner had been detrimental to their health.

50% admitted knowing the risks of a high-fat diet and had given into another Fast Food fix.

1 in 10 unable to give up, despite trying.

The temptation such as burgers on the go proves too hard to resist.

20% admit they are addicted to junk-food treats. (27)

Can we ignore the fact that there is a strong correlation with Fast Foods and Obesity?

Can we see clearly that a lifestyle of choosing Fast Foods is not working full stop?

WHY are we not choosing another way of living that can support our body?

WHY is the temptation always dominant and is there anything we can do?

What actually happens if we eat in front of the television?
What does the body register?

Is it really easy because it has no shopping, preparing, cooking or washing up?
Is this easy option affecting our health and our children’s weight issues?


Trans fats, found in most commercial baked goods and fried foods, were officially deemed by the FDA to cause high cholesterol – the leading cause of heart disease. (26)

20% all meals are eaten in the car. (28)

We are programmed to seek sweet and salty foods.
Fast Food knows how to pander to those cravings.

Once kids have a habit of eating these foods, it is hard to break it.

A particular challenge with teenagers is that they all feel invincible and they are not as sensitive to the long-term impacts of diet on their health.
Stephen Pont – Dell Children’s Medical Center, Texas.
Chairman – American Academy of Pediatrics’ section on Obesity (24)

Some organisations have shrunk their portion sizes as a way to be healthier.

So does that really make us happy when we have our meal because we know the portion size is smaller? OR do we just order more because we are used to the bigger portions?


World’s most valuable Fast Food brand, estimated brand value of $97.7 billion.

Sugary Soft Drinks

66% Youth consumed at least one sugar-sweetened beverage on a given day. (29)

USA claims the largest Fast Food Industry in the World. (14)

Many of the largest, most successful franchises have gone global, with restaurants in more than 100 countries.

Is this really what we call success?
Is success just about having more of the same?
Is success directly linked to making lots of money?

Do we all agree on what success is?
Do we have a one unified Truth about the word success?

Does this success consider the health of the consumer?
Does this success put profit before people consistently?
Does this success ensure shareholders are happy?
Does this success have a Priority to make money?
Does this success consider the consequences to the human body?

The Fast Food Industry USA includes ethnic trends which are in high demand like –

Bento Baskets
Egg Rolls
Fried Rice
Vietnamese Noodles

Coffee shops that serve extravagant beverages and smoothies are now a Fast Food beverage option that caters to the health-conscious crowd. (14)

WHY do we need more lavish drinks in the coffee shop?
WHY is the one cup of caffeine not cutting it anymore?
WHY do we yearn for the names to appeal to us like ‘billionaire drinks’?
WHY do we need a Christmas taste in our drink, as if there is such a thing?
WHY do we need even more chocolate and cream in our giant size mug?
WHY do we need a cake called millionaire to go with our billionaire drink?

Next – are we being fooled in anyway?

Can we seriously get honest and admit to sitting down and eating a large lump of ginger, 6 carrots, 6 apples, a bag of spinach and whatever else we fancy on the day, to put into our smoothie?

Just because it turns into a drink, is it something that we can easily digest OR is it a Solution?

Do we really think a big sweet drink with bananas, coconut cream and berries is a healthy option?

How is it that most of us want more after consuming our luxury indulgent sugar filled health drink?

WHY are we looking for something different to ADD to our regular beverage?

Are we looking to these coffee shops to provide us with more to keep us going?

Are we aware that caffeine is a drug and it alters our natural state and there is no getting away from that immutable fact?

Have we ever stopped and considered WHY coffee shops are always booming with business?

Could it be possible this is because we have a drug that is legal in our world called caffeine?

Skinny Fat

Have we heard of skinny fat?

“Being skinny doesn’t necessarily mean that you are healthy. In fact, it’s possible to be visibly thin but metabolically obese.”
Edward Tiozzo, Ph.D. – an instructor at the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine (30)

So, in Truth – is anyone actually Getting Away With It?

Are those who think they are not piling on the pounds actually better off or do we all have changes going on inside us when we eat Fast Foods?

Do we care enough or are we winging it because we can get into our skinny jeans?

Do we stop and think about what we are consuming when it comes to harmfull fats?

Do we consider the consequences of the copious amounts of salt and sugar in Fast Foods?

Do we realise that animals on our planet stick to their own diet and not create a racy pacy lifestyle with food to match that?


Multi-national food companies are using a network of micro-distributors and individual sellers with handcarts to reach consumers who would otherwise not have access to their products.

Direct sales army is part of a broader transformation of the food system that is delivering Western-style processed food and sugary drink to the most isolated pockets of Latin America, Africa and Asia.

As their growth slows in the wealthiest countries, these multi-national food companies have been aggressively expanding their presence in developing nations and overturning traditional diets from Brazil to Ghana to India.

There is a sea change in the way food is produced, distributed and advertised across much of the globe. The shift, many public health experts say, is contributing to a new epidemic of Diabetes and Heart Disease, chronic illnesses that are fed by soaring rates of Obesity in places that struggled with hunger and malnutrition a generation ago.

Growing availability of high-calorie, nutrient-poor foods is generating a new type of malnutrition, one in which a growing number of people are both overweight and undernourished.

Cheap food – widely available, it makes sense.
The diet is killing us.
Anthony Winson – Political Economics of Nutrition
University of Guelph in Ontario (17)

Obesity has been an unexpected side effect of making inexpensive processed food more widely available.
We did not expect what the impact would be.
Part of the problem is a natural tendency for people to overeat as they can afford more food.
Sean Westcott – Head of Food Research and Development, Nestle (17)

This is as much about economics as it is nutrition.
As multi-national companies push deeper into the developing world, they are transforming local agriculture, spurring farmers to abandon subsistence crops in favour of cash commodities like sugar cane, corn and soybeans – the modern building blocks for many industrial food products.

It is the economic ecosystem that pulls in the mom-and-pop stores, big box retailers, food manufacturers and distributors and small vendors.

In China, South Africa and Columbia, the rising of big food companies also translates into political influence, hindering the progress of public health officials or legislation aimed at curbing the health impacts of processed food. (17)

The developing world is now a large contributor to these ever-growing multi-national companies and there is more. There are 600 million teenagers who have not had their soda this week so this is a huge opportunity for them to target and market a sector of humanity who can bring in even more profit.

WHY have we become a world that is focussed on investors gaining even more?

WHY do our shareholders want the dividends but not look at the consequences of what their products or services are doing to humanity?

WHY is everything so geared around making more and more money?

When are we going to value human life before any profit?

WHY are industry defenders saying that processed food is essential?

WHY are we demanding convenience because we have a rise in income?

Is the cost of our health not in the equation, because we earn more money?

WHY do we think that urban life comes with a high price to our health and well-being?

WHY are we choosing to subscribe to Fast Food with our Fast Life, when we know it hurts us?

WHY are we not willing to take a stop moment and look at the harm that is taking place?

WHY do we seem to just give in when it comes to eating Fast Food on the go?

Depression and Junk Food


Eating too much junk food may increase risk for Depression.
Large study in 2012 of adults who consistently consumed “Fast Food” such as hamburgers and pizza.

40% more likely to develop Depression.

Steady rise in depression as more Fast Food was consumed.

Participants who often ate commercial baked food like croissants and doughnuts, were also at significant risk of developing this disorder.

Even small quantities of Fast Food were linked to a significantly higher risk for depression.

Depression is the leading cause of ill health and disability worldwide. (31)

322 million people have Depression. (32)


Can we join the dots?
Is this making sense?
There is a link with Junk Food and Depression?
So what can we do about this and where do we start?

Could we begin by taking Responsibility for our daily choices?
Could this then be how we can inspire others to do the same?

Could this be how we will eventually turn the tides and re-turn back to our natural way of being on earth?

Are we ready to pay attention to blogs like this that are spelling it out?

Fast Food consumption was defined in this study as total consumption of hamburgers, pizza and hot dogs/sausages. Commercial baked goods consumption was defined as total consumption of croissants, doughnuts and muffins.

The investigators also found that the study participants with the highest consumption of Fast Food and of commercial baked goods were more likely to be

Less active
Eat less fruits, vegetables, nuts, fish and olive oil
Work more than 45 hours per week

The researchers add that the legally permitted content of trans unsaturated fatty acids (TFA) in these foods “should be reviewed”.

Although more studies are necessary, the intake of this type of food should be controlled because of its implications on both health (obesity, cardiovascular disease) and mental well-being.
Dr. Almudena Sanchez-Villegas PhD – Department of Clinical Sciences
University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
Department of Preventative Medicine and Public Health
University of Navarra – Pamplona, Spain

Results of the study report that unhealthy diets are associated with an increased risk for mental health problems over time.

…this study adds to the rapidly growing and highly consistent body of literature suggesting that depression is another common, non-communicable illness with a significant lifestyle component.
As such, it is prudent for clinicians to assess and address the dietary as well as exercise habits of their patients, in addition to pharmacological and other established treatments.
Dr. Felice Jacka PhD
Research Fellow – Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia (33)

Do we really need more studies or is common sense enough to confirm we have an unhealthy diet problem in the world?

Are we aware that what we choose to eat can affect our mental health?

Are we aware that we can choose to make lifestyle changes and commit to them?

Children and Fast Food


Study to assess the awareness of health hazards, consumption pattern of Fast Foods and its association with overweight among high school students.

India’s Fast Food industry is expanding at the rate of 40% every year.

In this age of urbanization, popularity of fast food has been attributed to quick preparation and convenience of finishing a meal within no time.

What is appealing particularly to adolescents is great taste, attractive appearance along with advertising.

The energy density of Fast Foods had been found to be more than twice the recommended daily allowance for children.

Experts attribute the current childhood Obesity epidemic to Fast Foods.

This increase in childhood Obesity has led to increase in life-threatening conditions particularly non-communicable diseases in developing countries.

Dental cavities in school children – due to dense sugar content in Fast Foods.

Food additives used in Fast Food found to be carcinogenic.
Can cause Asthma, frequently seen among children.

Developing countries – poor hygiene during preparation, storage and handling of Fast Foods leading to contamination by micro-organisms.

64% introduced to Fast Foods through TV commercials.

57% developed habit due to being bored with home food.

Parental consumption of Fast Food had influence among children.

Increase frequency of Fast Food consumption in a week associated with Obesity among children.

The report concludes that awareness on health hazards of Fast Foods needs to be taught at schools to minimise its consumption.

Parents need to be role models by not eating Fast Foods and improving home food, to minimise lifestyle disorders among children. (34)

Dear World

Are we aware that the suppliers are responding to our demands?

Are we aware that it is us who want and then they get supplying?

Is this blog and others listed below telling us we are in serious trouble and things are getting worse?

Chronic Fatigue
Drug Abuse
Eating Disorders
Female Genital Mutilation
Global Wellness
Heart Disease
High Blood Pressure
Human Trafficking
Independence Day
Kidney Disease
Mental Health
Sleep Issues
Social Media
Video Games

Is it time to stop and ask – is there another way?

We all know we are what we eat, so is it time to take Responsibility for our own health in the knowing that it is never too late?

Could it be that Simple?


(1) (2017, March 1). Global Fast Food Market Will Reach USD 690.80 Billion in 2022: Zion Market Research. Globe Newswire. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(2) Concise Oxford English Dictionary – Twelfth Edition. Oxford University Press. 2011.

(3) (n.d). Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(4) (n.d). Cambridge Dictionary. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(5) (n.d). Collins English Dictionary. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(6) (n.d). Collins English Dictionary. Retrieved November 22, 2017 from

(7) (n.d). Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Retrieved November 22, 2017 from

(8) (n.d). Cambridge Dictionary. Retrieved November 22, 2017 from

(9) (2017, April 25). The World’s Largest Fast Food Restaurant Chains. World Atlas. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(10) Trefis Team. (2014, June 23). How the Fast Casual Segment is Gaining Market Share in the Restaurant Industry. Forbes. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(11) (2017). Revenue of the Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) Industry in the United States from 2002 to 2020 (in billion U.S. Dollars). Statista. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(12) (n.d). Fast Food Industry – Statistics & Facts. Statista. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(13) (2017). Number of Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) Franchise Establishments in the United States from 2007 to 2017. Statista. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(14) (n.d). The History of Fast Food. AccuPOS. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(15) (2017, November 4). Nourishing the SDGs 2017. Global Nutrition Report. (pp. 10, 19 and 36). Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(16) (2016, January 25). Commission Presents Its Final Report, Calling for High-Level Action to Address Major Health Challenge. World Health Organization (WHO). Retrieved November 24, 2017 from

(17) Jacobs, A., & Richtel, M. (2017, September 16). How Big Business Got Brazil Hooked on Junk Food. New York Times. Retrieved November 24, 2017 from

(18) Pilon, A. (2014, August 13). Fast Food Survey: Most Customers Choose Fast Food for Convenience. Aytm. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(19) Sena, M. (2017). Fast Food Industry Analysis 2017 – Cost & Trends. Franchise Help. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(20) (2017) Brand Value of the 10 Most Valuable Fast Food Brands Worldwide in 2017 (in Million U.S. Dollars). Statista. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(21) (n.d). English Oxford Living Dictionaries. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(22) Clark, S. (2017, November 6). Why Does Fast Food Taste So Good? Fast Food Nation. Retrieved November 24, 2017 from

(23) (2003, May 23). Eating Food Too Fast Speeds Heartburn. WebMD. Retrieved November 22, 2017 from

(24) Aubrey, A. (2015, September 17). About a Third of U.S. Kids and Teens Ate Fast Food Today. National Public Radio (NPR). Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(25) (2016, August 8). Fast Food Eating Statistics. Statistic Brain. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(26) Ohio Medical Group. (2016, July 15). Shocking Fast Food Statistics You Should Know. Partners for Your Health – University Hospitals. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(27) (2014, May 1). Average American Spends $1,200 a Year on Fast Food – That’s Burgers and Fried Chicken Twice EVERY Week. Daily Mail. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(28) (n.d). 11 Facts About American Eating Habits. Retrieved November 23, 2017 from

(29) Rosinger, A., Herrick, K., Gahnche, J., & Park, S. (2017, January). Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Consumption Among U.S. Youth, 2011 – 2014. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (CDC). Retrieved November 24, 2017 from

(30) Wolfe, C. (n.d). Being Skinny Fat: Is It a Real Thing? SmartHealth.  Retrieved November 24, 2017 from

(31) (2017, April 7). Depression: Let’s Talk. World Health Organization (WHO). Retrieved November 25, 2017 from

(32) Depression and Other Common Mental Disorders: Global Health Estimates. Geneva: World Health Organization: 2017. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO (p.8). Retrieved November 25, 2017 from

(33) Brauser, D. (2012, April 25). Junk Food Linked to Depression. Medscape. Retrieved November 21, 2017 from

(34) Joseph, N., Nelliyanil, M., Rai, S., Babu Y.P., R., Kotian, S.M., Ghosh, T., & Singh, M. (2015, May 1). Fast Food Consumption Pattern and Its Association with Overweight Among High School Boys in Mangalore City of Southern India. NCBI. Retrieved November 21, 2017 from





Comments 69

  1. Fast food just seems to be a normal part of life in the USA. Little by little the mom and pop restaurants are going out of business and people are cooking less.

    This blog is showing the negative health effects of eating fast food. Most people would agree that fast food is not good for you, it may taste good going down, but you pay for it later. So why is fast food growing so rapidly?

    If eating food is all about nourishing yourself, and fast food is showing that it is actually having a negative health on your health, then what is going on?

    One obvious reason to me, is that people are too exhausted to cook. I have been there. Ordering out a pizza was a special treat for the whole family. I knew it felt wrong but at the time, it was actually a loving thing to do because of the way we were living. I did not have the energy to prepare a meal.

    So is fast food a result of the way the world is living?
    Living in the fast lane just feeds our demand for fast food?

    Some of my most treasured memories, is cooking food with my family. Not only is it nurturing nutritionally, it develops a sense of connection to food and food preparation that is important to pass on to our children.

    When food is prepared with love and commitment it nourishes us in a way that fast food can not do.

  2. I was talking to a black cab driver the other day and he was sharing how many hours he now has to work to earn enough money to live these days. He said he just doesn’t have the energy at the end of the day to cook himself something nourishing.

    He called the food he eats ‘convenience food’ and said he knew it was killing him.

    He was angry and depressed and said he knew the food was contributing to it because he wasn’t taking care of himself.

    We talked about adding chopped up parsley to baked beans and having a head of broccoli on hand to add to what he is eating.

  3. Yes, still another example of us doing things that we know are not good for us, yet we can still do them.

    Something is wrong with how we are living if it causes us to ignore what our bodies are telling us.

    Simple Living Global has supported me make simple changes in how I live my life, so that I am now committed to eating in a way that supports my body. And I can even enjoy some french fries [chips], now and then without my body complaining!

  4. This is such a huge exposé for all of us.

    Fast food is everywhere in our society. How are we each contributing to this?

    For example, for me, I don’t like processed food – I like healthy, beautifully prepared food and that is how I and my family eat.

    However, when we go to a restaurant, I can get impatient if the food takes too long to come.

    Isn’t that part of the same reason fast food is so rife – that we are rushing around not wanting to wait; not making space for the important act of nourishing ourselves; not respecting that loving food preparation takes as long as it takes?

  5. I work in peoples homes, usually with them there. I am noticing that many people do not eat lunch, and when I say I am going to stop for lunch they are surprised that I bring my own food. Many of these people do not work, yet it seems they have no interest in preparing food for themselves, or even eating.

    This is a new trend for me. In a rural community where I lived and worked, it was common practice for the home where I was working to provide lunch, and some of the meals were amazing. They understood the value of eating wholesome food. And the sitting and visiting while you ate was great. There was a value attached to eating, besides just nourishment.

    One of my clients now sits with me when I eat lunch, and sometimes brings something to eat. And she has become a great friend, and is interested in the changes, I have made in my life.

    This is how I can make a difference in the world. Living in a way that honors myself, supports people to see that it is ok to honor themselves.

  6. Brilliant blog, so well researched – and raises conversation stopping questions about fast food and junk food.

    In my own experience it is not true that great nutritional food takes long to prepare or cook – it simply requires a little more planning, and a different way of shopping, which once experienced can be mastered to ensure that nutritional food is prepared and cooked that can be taken to work, or eaten at any time of the day and it doesn’t need to be expensive or take long to do.
    I know my body definitely notices the difference when I prepare/cook simple nutritional food.

    1. Thanks Jane as what you say makes so much sense.

      I read an article earlier this year that states that one in three 10 year olds in one part of London are obese or overweight – this is high! Within one square mile the area is quoted to have 34 fast food outlets. This is an area that has a low income population and would be known as a poverty area.

      It has always been interesting to me that in low income areas, there are more fast food places, than in higher income places. This has never really made sense to me as people are people and so do we not all require the same level of nutritious food?

      If we keep feeding poor people poor quality food, how will they ever get out of that situation?

      Creating solutions of fast food places that have less salt, sugar and fat content in their foods is not really the answer.

      How much will it take to educate and teach how simple it is to cook nutritious foods and to have that available en masse? But maybe we are not crying out for this en masse and so it cannot be supplied?

      The thing with fast foods and junk foods is that the more we eat them the more we crave them and so even as the individuals eating them, it takes a lot to wake us up to start to question what we are doing if the salt, sugar, fat combo is serving to keep us numb and blind to what is happening.

      I liken it to being in an abusive relationship, unless someone comes along to show us another way or something deep inside of us wakes up to say that ‘this is wrong’ – we will continue.

      Thank God we have this website by Simple Living Global that serves as a way to wake us up.

  7. I agree Katherine – when I work away, in hotels, or when I work at events or conferences I always request food that I know I can eat e.g. a gluten/dairy free salad, or simply cooked fish and vegetables – I always get comments from others around me to say ‘I wish I had that too’ and I always say ‘then why don’t you also request food that works for you?’. I find in most places the chef, or staff are only too pleased to cook something that I can eat – so it is also not true if anyone said it’s hard to eat healthily or in a way that supports us when we are out – as most places can usually offer some simply prepared nutritional food.

  8. As a serial junk food, fast food eater of the past, I recall how I usually felt before and after my meal session. I call it session because as soon as it was over, I was already plotting and planning my next eating session.

    In the UK, bakery is big business and its food on the go. My thing was cakes and one was never enough. The other thing was fast food takeaways and I would be ringing up checking how far my order had got to as nothing was ever fast enough. Eating it in a rush, like a frenzy was just the normal. No wonder I was bloated and what I call fat.

    The thing that sticks out now, as it’s been over a decade since I subscribed to this type of food, is how I actually felt empty before, during and after eating this junk food.

    As this blog says, the meaning of junk is exactly that. So why was I expecting it to do something when it was useless food and empty calories going inside my body.

    We never treat our cars in this way and give it the wrong fuel, but we seem totally ok doing it to our own precious body. The truth is I never once regarded my body as something that deserved my focus, attention and care. Thankfully, I do now and the benefits are there.

    Dealing with my exhaustion and developing a strong solid sleep rhythm was key for me in getting off the fast food, junk food train. I dread to think where I would have ended up had I continued on that wagon, which was going nowhere, other than destroying my vitality levels, affecting my mood and making me morbidly obese.

    Our world has a huge obesity crisis right now and what is going to work, if you ask me, is people who have walked that road and are no longer on it to share what they have done.

    I know it holds a quality when someone talks from lived experience and have made the mistakes and can inspire others that there is another way. People tend to listen and are more likely to take action because they are not empty words.

    This is how I got inspired and it was after a presentation from a man called Serge Benhayon. He walks the walk and talks the talk and that was something that I could not ignore any longer and change was easy as I could see, hear and feel it was possible.

  9. Wow great article. One of the facts that stood out to me is in 2014 in America ‘1 in 3 admit their need for a quick fix dinner had been detrimental to their health.’ This to me says we do know the effect these foods are having on us and if supply is due to our demands then it makes sense for us to look at why we are going to the fast food, our demand.. and that we have a choice and a responsibility for our health.

    In my experience healthy home prepared foods and can be simple to make and very nourishing at the same time, plus they are super tasty.


    The Telegraph – 13 November 2017

    Eating food fast, increases the risk of Obesity, Heart Attack and Stroke according to a new study.

    Fast eaters were five times more likely to develop symptoms which raised their risk of a heart attack, diabetes and stroke. They were also more than three times more likely to have gained three stone in weight.

    Eating too fast appears to cause spikes of blood sugar, which can stop insulin working effectively.

    There is more in this news story but as we all like things fast – these are the highlights.

    So what is it about us that wants food to be consumed fast, as we live in the fast lane non-stop 24/7?
    Even when we sleep we think we are on the motorway at high speed, as everything is racing inside us?

    What is the quality of our life if we do things fast and eat fast?

    What pressure are we putting on our body gobbling food down fast without paying any attention?

    Can we simply join the dots, read this blog again and apply some common sense?
    Eating fast is harmful to our natural state of being and is not supporting us in any way.

    Do we really need to wait for more and more research studies to tell us what is known by all of us, if we just choose to apply good old fashioned common sense?

  11. 2,000, nine and ten year olds were surveyed about their diets and 1 in 4 said they had takeaways once a week. As a result, this group had higher body fat consumption, due to excess calories and lower levels of vitamins and minerals, than those who ate cooked food at home. The research team warned that continuing on this type of diet could increase the risk of heart disease and other health problems later in life, saying takeaways should be “actively discouraged”. This research was conducted by researchers at St. George’s – University of London.

    So, researchers are confirming what we already know. Takeaways are bad for us. However we seem to be eating them more frequently and at young and younger ages.

    We all know that junk food and takeaways taste ‘good’ in the mouth and this extensive article by Simple Living Global explains why. We could easily try replacing takeaways with home cooked meals, but if we do this without any understanding as to why we are reaching for takeaways in the first place, we will revert back to the same situation OR seek another vice.

    Questioning why we are reaching for takeaways and their fat, sugar and salt components, would support us to understand further what we are craving.

  12. I see this week that a leading brand of high street fast food/junk food now has a ‘vegan burger’. So maybe for vegans that gives them a greater opportunity to eat fast food/junk food when they are out and about – if that is the type of food they choose.

    It is interesting to see how some of the fast food/junk food emporiums brand their products e.g. vegan, or having ‘salad’ or using ‘organic products’ or ‘less sugar/less salt’ but whatever the branding it is – it is still junk food/fast food. So, as in the blog ‘Are we being fooled?’ Are we being fooled by these tactics? do we really feel that in having ‘organic’ products, or ‘less sugar’ etc that these foods are actually healthier, or is the trick here that their branding with ‘organic’ or ‘less sugar’ gives us more opportunity to JUSTIFY that we can eat their food because it is ‘organic’ or ‘less sugar’?

    In the end our body knows exactly the quality of the food we eat – whether we want to feel that or not.

  13. Fast food helps us ignore the possibility of having a real conversation with a person, which could bring up a feeling that we do not want to feel.

    The simple fact that we crave connection with other people, and we are living in a way that avoids this at all cost.

  14. I was talking with a person who is supporting children with their personal issues. She does a intake form that gives her a overall impression of the child’s life.

    She is finding that most of the children she is working with are obese, going by the guidelines she uses. She has been doing this work all her life, and the overall health of children is getting worse.

    Her comment was – How can these children deal with life when their bodies are not getting the right nutrients?
    How can I support these children?

    How many of our illnesses are because of the poor quality of food we eat?

  15. In our local cafe today and my friend mentioned the guy next to us had ordered and ate his Big meal really fast. Then comes the next round of food – another complete dinner piled high on a big plate. We noticed this man was skinny and realised after reading this blog that there is such a thing as skinny fat.

    The other thing that came to me is what if this man was eating so fast, his body simply did not register the full up feeling and so he just ordered more and it really makes no sense.

    It is impossible to eat two huge dinners in such a short space of time.

    I know this is not an isolated case and is it time to start asking questions about our eating fast and not taking a moment to stop and pause before our next choice?

    Let us not forget that our human body has a complex digestion process that works with all other systems in our body.

    So overeating or eating too fast will affect our breathing, so our Respiratory system is affected.

    If our breathing has changed with the fast eating, then our heart rate would change and our blood pressure.

    This means our Vascular system is now having to work hard and so it goes on and on affecting all of our internal organs.

    Could it be possible that if we are not connected to our body, then the choice we make is not in regard and honour of our body?

    Could it be that simple?

  16. As well as fast food come the drinks available, of which there are what we could call ‘junk drinks’. In the news today where Waitrose is to ban the sale of high-caffiene energy drinks to children under aged 16. (

    In having a ban such as this, does this not tell us that there is something about these drinks that is unsafe?

    That said I often see school children drinking these drinks on their way to school in the mornings .

    What is it that in a young body, such as a school child, they would feel the need to drink these drinks? Is it that children today are living in a way where they are tired or exhausted? And these drinks give them a ‘pep’ up?

  17. BBC News – 10 December 2017

    Teachers call for ban on energy drinks in schools.

    WHY is one of the largest teaching unions in the UK calling for schools to ban energy drinks from their premises?

    Is this the question that we should all be asking now?

    WHY are young people in the UK among the highest consumers of energy drinks in Europe?

    WHY are academics calling on the government to consider making the sale of the drinks illegal to under-16s ?

    WHY are children saying they buy these drinks to “fit in” or “look tough”?

    WHY are we not aware of the very high levels of stimulants that these drinks contain?
    This includes sugar.

    WHY are these energy drinks targeted at young people online in pop-up adverts, on TV, in computer games and through sports sponsorship?

    A typical energy drink contains 32mg of Caffeine per 100ml and cans carry warnings saying they are “not recommended for children”.

    A single 500ml can contains equivalent of two shots of espresso coffee.

    But the British Soft Drinks Association says the drinks have been deemed safe.

    Figures from the British Soft Drinks Association show sales of energy drinks increased by 185% between 2006 and 2015, equating to 672 million litres consumed in 2015 and a total market value of over £2 billion.

    “They are readily available legal highs sold in vending machines, supermarkets and corner shops.
    The evidence of the impact of these drinks, including that uncovered by 5 live, is compelling and serves to emphasise that further action needs to be taken.
    It is time to look again at the School Food Standards and the enforcement of standards, to make sure that every school in the country is free of highly-caffeinated soft drinks, as well as those that are high in sugar.
    says Darren Northcott, NASUWT – National Official for Education.

    So what exactly is needed here – can we blame the suppliers?

    Is it better to look at who is demanding this and the most important question WHY?

    What is going on for our children and teenagers that make them crave stimulants in the form of a highly toxic energy drink?

    WHY does a growing body require a prop to keep going?

    Is there something here we are not addressing?

    Is there a blind spot that we have not yet looked at because our own life is full of stimulants?

    Are our kids exhausted because their sleep rhythm is not honoured and so they have depletion in their life force from the moment they wake?

    Are our children suffering because the modern world of screen time and social media and video gaming is taking priority over basic life foundational things like sensible eating, walking and sleeping?

    Do we need to get to the root cause or are we going to continue as a society to find a solution to this ever growing ill that we have all contributed to?

    There is no blame here – we all need to be called to Responsibility in our own life, so we can set the record straight for our future generations.

  18. Another ‘WOW’ blog, Simple Living Global, thank you.

    At my heaviest, I weighed over 27 stone and was classed as morbidly obese. I got to be that overweight by eating many a fast food meal, from burgers, pizza, chicken, pies, Chinese and Indian takeaways, sandwiches, chips, etc. all washed down with plenty of fizzy, sweetened drinks. And of course, that would have been followed by some form of dessert or sweet treat.

    Did I know how harmful these foods were?…Sort of.

    Did I know I had to start to eat more healthily to lose weight?…Yes.

    Did I care enough to do anything about it?…No.

    Why not?

    The simple fact is that these foods tasted good, they smelt good and they looked good.

    They were extremely convenient and they were easy to get.
    They were cheap and in many cases, you didn’t even have to get out of your car.

    I definitely ate more than I needed, often buying two peoples portions, either eating in the car or going home and eating in front of the TV.

    The problem was, because of the lack of nutrition in these foods, I was hungry again in a few hours and would then start snacking on other unhealthy foods.

    The weight gain starts a cycle of abuse that is hard to break free from and the more fast food I ate, the heavier I got. The heavier I got, the less motivation I had to exercise or cook for myself which meant I was then pulled to satisfying my appetites from the fast food outlets.

    Once we start on this road of comfort eating, it is very easy to see how the weight starts to pile on and we have very little inclination to do anything about it.

    Is it possible that these fast foods are highly addictive?

    Form my point of view, I would say yes, considering how long it took me to come off them.

    But the thing here is…I was the one that chose to eat these foods.

    I was the one that chose the comfort
    I was the one that chose to not cook for myself.
    I was the one that chose convenience.
    I was the one that chose to not nurture and nourish myself.

    We can make the argument that some people’s obesity is due to a medical condition and that may be so, but on the whole we have only ourselves to look at for what we chose to eat.

    About 10 years ago I was presented with the possibilities of how food actually affects our bodies and how important it is to truly nurture and nourish ourselves.

    Over time, with these presentations from Serge Benhayon, I have attained a weight loss of over 12 stone but more importantly I have instilled in myself the love and joy of wanting to cook food that truly nurtures and nourishes, not only me, but others too.

    My fast food days are over now and as this blog asks, it is never too late to start to take responsibility for our own health and well-being.

  19. Hello Tim as usual loved reading your down to earth and real comment above. I think you should be presenting on this stuff, so many people suffer from obesity and yo-yo-dieting as an antidote. The way you have transformed yourself is inspiring and your very practical and self-loving approach could offer immense support to those struggling with this issue and who are ready to take a bit of responsibility.

    There’s nothing else like this out there, diet bars and weigh ins won’t fix it.

  20. In Spain, when people want to go out for a good meal, they go to the local petrol station.

    The petrol stations have excellent family-run restaurants attached to them. Even the ones on the motorway.

    As someone from the UK who is used to fast food joints and junk food on offer at our service stations, it has been strange to see this.

    And yet it makes perfect sense.

    Lots of people use petrol stations. They are convenient to get to. People want simple, inexpensive, home cooked food. Put them together and you have a great combination.

    Somehow eating lunch on a forecourt doesn’t seem to reduce the experience.

    And heaps of families get to run the show – to have their own successful restaurant business, complete with a very local workforce.

    So it had me questioning why things are so different in the UK.

    Is it that we value home cooked food much less and this is how junk food has taken such a hold?

    I wonder if more of us prepared and cherished our own home cooked food, would this shift our focus and therefore the demand?

    There is a world of difference in the quality of home cooked food, versus fast food – the quality of ingredients, their nutritional value and nourishment; how it is prepared and how it registers and is processed by the body.

    Yet if we aren’t experiencing and appreciating meals prepared with that quality, we will have nothing to compare the fast food, junk food experience to. It will be easy to reduce everything down to convenience: what happens to be on offer and how fast is the service.

    In fact the food was pretty fast at the petrol station, but it was most definitely not junk.

    I wonder what would happen if we made a shift to this or experimented with it in the UK. How would a good quality, family run restaurant at a local petrol station affect our food choices? Particularly when we are travelling, but also for the locals.

    Would increasing access to quality food be enough to bring about a shift or is there much more here to address in our daily choices and what we value?

  21. Just talking at the bank today about our elderly parents and certain cultures who are without doubt not willing to make changes.

    One lady was saying how her mother is now too old and cannot be bothered to cook for her or her husband. They rely on food cooked by their daughters one or two days a week and for the rest they pop out to the same fast food place.

    Strange as they never grew up on that food and a hamburger joint was never on their radar.

    What is interesting is she thinks they want the social part of it as it means they get to be around people.

    What is it about us that one day just gives up and forgets about health and well being?

    What drives us to eat food that we all know is not deeply nutritious in anyway?

    The other thing is in her culture, same as the Indian culture, there is never an option to seek help or go into a nursing home, no matter what.

    What is forgotten is that in the past the children would be taking care of them as they all lived together but these days this is not happening, so these elderly are trying it alone but sticking to their cultural beliefs to a point.

  22. I just saw an ad for ice cream that was all about euphoria.

    If we are honest, isn’t that often what we seek from our food? Especially the junk food?

  23. Daily Mail – 21 April 2018

    Britons might not know how to cook within two generations.

    This is the title of a news headline.
    What is going on and how has this happened?

    Nicola Temple, a science writer is warning us that cooking may die out among the majority of British people, just like sewing has become a domestic skill of the past.

    On a lecture on the future of food, she is saying what this blog has presented about how popular food on the go is, convenience, ready meals, no time and the rest of our excuses for not wanting to cook.

    A great point is that in the UK on average 3.5 hours of television watching is done, so we do need to get honest – is it that we don’t actually want to cook.

    With more single person households chances are they are less likely to cook or make the effort.

    1.6 billion ready meals are consumed for dinner every year.
    73% increase in past decade – what we spend on takeaways.

    The interesting thing she adds is “people are obsessed with food, which means they are obsessed with watching cooking shows. But these people are not obsessed with making their own food all of the time.
    The shift from preparing our own food to watching people prepare food as a form of entertainment is concerning for several reasons, not the least of which is that we are passing over the responsibility of what goes into our mouths – what nurtures us and keeps us healthy – to others.”

    As the writer of this blog and re-reading it and all the comments and reflecting on this news story, it would be true to say that I was big into watching cooking shows and let’s face it, we have such a huge selection on tap 24/7.

    I can recall watching a program about chocolate fantasies where the creators come up with all sorts of things that people request for their parties. Cakes like you could never imagine.

    Whilst watching TV cooking shows, I would be scoffing down chocolate cake, biscuits and have a stockpile next to me to keep going. I would then switch channels and keep my mind entertained while my body was copping my ugly choices. At the time I had no awareness of this fact.

    I also found it impossible to deeply nurture myself or take care of my food. It was easy and comfortable not getting shopping, cooking and all that washing up. If we had guests then yes I became superwoman and super chef and could come up with almost any dish I wanted.

    It was an illness that was so bad that I had an organ removed and whilst recovering I burnt my hand badly. After almost a year, I took note of what Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine were presenting as it seemed to make sense.

    I went back to ground zero and every single day I made small steps to take care of myself and that included buying food and cooking and eating it. That was 10 years ago and it has paid off for sure.

    Looking back, I can see for sure I was on my way to Diabetes and much more if I had not listened to the wise presentations from this incredible man who really does know what he is talking about and is way ahead of what our world needs. He predicted all this back then, yet I paid lip service to it at first.

    Today it would be true to say that I most certainly know how to deeply nurture myself and make wise choices and ready meals, fast convenient foods and takeaways are not on my radar. Thank God is all I can say right now.

  24. Talking to a colleague about food and in particular about sugar.

    He was sharing how sugar behaves in the body like alcohol. It changes your mood, your being. He said it is scary how addicted we all are to it.

    He said he feels the changes in himself when he has it and has to be careful with it, because once he starts he can’t stop with it.

    He joked about avoiding being one of those lab mice that goes back time and again for the sweet water.

    He said the science is all out there to show us we need to quit it now, but we don’t want to. And so the companies that make money from us eating it can bring out research findings that distract us or delay us from seeing the truth.

    He mentioned the UK sugar tax on fizzy drinks as a great start, but felt we still have a long way to go.

    This was such a profound conversation, prompted simply by me sharing about my own food choices. I could see it tuned him in more fully to his own truth and confirmed him in that.

    It feels like many of us are looking at these things now, in a way we were not before and that makes it easier to make the adjustments we need to live well. If this is the direction of travel, it is a positive thing for all of us.

  25. Daily Mail – 28 April 2018

    I read a news story recently written by Frances Hardy on fast food outlets in Camberwell, London. ‘Cut price meal deals, reductions for bulk buying and gut busting ‘all you can eat’ offers are everywhere’ with school kid offers from 3pm – 6pm. For just £1, pupils on their way home from nearby schools fill up on fried chicken wings or burger and chips and sugar-laden drinks.

    Camberwell is known to be at the Centre of England’s Childhood Obesity Epidemic.

    In April 2018 Camberwell was singled out by Public Health England as the first in Britain where more than 50% of children are overweight or obese by the time they leave primary school.

    By the time pupils are aged 10 or 11 the official research shows more than 50% have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 25 or over. Studies suggest that the statistics are so high because of the increase in takeaway outlets, whose numbers grew by 7% between 2014 – 2017.

    Some parents were interviewed and one shared that even though she cooks at home she is aware of friends’ children buying their evening meal at the chicken shop and that she knows a lot of mums who give their children £1 to buy a chicken meal. The mother shared ‘But I think it’s about educating the parents as well.’

    Another parent shared that her child does not like home cooked meals and so if she doesn’t feed him take-aways when he wants he won’t eat.

    Children who are obese when they leave junior school are more likely to develop diabetes and cardiovascular diseases as well as osteoarthritis and certain cancers at younger ages. They are also more likely to die prematurely and face disability in adulthood (World Health Organization).

    In contrast a supermarket in Camberwell is described as having bare shelves where some of the vegetables go, but the areas where £3 flapjacks and honeycomb clusters are placed are regularly replenished.

    The author goes on to say that “The fragmentation of close-knit families, hard-pressed working single parents, poverty, lack of cookery skills and the ever-present allure of fast food – all these factors create the perfect conditions for soaring obesity and ill-health.”

    Having read this report it confirms that we have a serious epidemic on our hands. Yes this is one area of London but I have read many many news reports on obesity in all parts of the world and so this issue is not limited to Camberwell.

    Is there more going on here as to why all of these fast food places are popping up?
    Why are we demanding this?

    Have we stopped to consider whether there is something about our lives that is missing that is causing us to crave these foods?

  26. Driving behind some buses this weekend, my husband pointed out how many adverts there are for vitamins, for different categories of people – teens, old people, men, women, children, nursing mums.

    Does this simply capitalise on our desire to be able to eat what we like and outsource nutrition to a tablet? So we could eat junk food as much as we want and feed it to our kids, because the vitamins are taken care of…

  27. The Times
    24 May 2018

    Mediterranean children grow fat on fast food.

    The birth place of Mediterranean diet has the fattest children on the continent as Southern Europe rejects fruit, vegetables, olive oil and fish in favour of burgers and chips and fizzy drinks.

    Measurements of 250,000 children in 38 countries found that Cyprus, Spain, Greece and Italy had some of Europes highest rates of child obesity.

    In all four countries 40 percent of boys aged six to nine were over weight with rates almost as high in girls.

    Briton was not included in the data but separate figures show that almost 35 percent of children are over weight by the age of 11.

    Why are we substituting the healthy mediterranean foods for junk food?

    Do we have a responsibility to our children’s health?

    Where is their necessary nutrition coming from to help them to grow healthy vital bodies?

    Do we care enough that our children are over weight at such young ages?

    How is this setting our children up for the rest of their lives and their future health?

    Do we need to look at our own diet and food choices, so we can be role models for our children?

    These are our future generations.

    We do the shopping and the cooking – it is our choice.

    Fruit, vegetables, olive oil and fish are plentiful – why are we not choosing this?

  28. Talking to a neighbour this weekend who had just come back from a trip to Disney. He said the family was exhausted from ‘maxing it all out’ and that the kids had grown loads because they had all eaten so much during the week.

    I wondered whether the 2 things were connected – the onslaught of activities and stimulation and the eating. Was it all too much?

    He said probably – the kids had eaten adult-size meals for every meal, with snacks in between. Fried breakfasts and burgers and hotdogs and the like. He said they just couldn’t get filled up.

    What was it about the environment they were in and what they were doing that had them eating this way?

    Is there something more to look at for all of us here?

  29. A dad got on the train yesterday a way down the carriage with his young twins in a double pushchair.

    He was working hard to keep them quiet and apologising to the other passengers.

    He used different types of snacks for the first 20 minutes of the journey, to occupy them. At one point he announced to us all he was ‘keeping them cheered up with crisps’.

    Except when the train was then stationary for a while and all the snacks had gone. The kids started to ‘play up’. He sang a song. That didn’t work. They started to get louder. They wanted snacks.

    He negotiated a bit – ‘I will give you more later if you are quiet while we are on the train’ etc.

    It didn’t work. It was an uncomfortable 10 minutes all round, until they got off.

    Personally, I have found this snack thing just doesn’t work and it creates problems you have to work hard to undo.

    Your kids start to expect food when it’s not a meal time. Goodness knows what eating issues that stores up for later life. And it’s never enough – one snack just doesn’t do it.

    And they are also learning that if they make a fuss they get fed. Doesn’t seem like a great lesson for life or even in the short term.

    And I’m wondering how many parents would feel differently if they were supported by others on the train. If we didn’t judge and simply supported, as a community. Would parents feel less pressure and more able simply to set boundaries and accept it if the kids screamed a bit as a result?

    Or are snacks to keep kids quiet just the most accessible shortcut and so many of us would just prefer that for an easy life?

  30. A £99 ice cream has been created and is being sold in a well known department store.

    The ingredients –

    salted caramel ice cream in a cone coated with –

    edible pearls

    gelato spheres of mango, ginger and passion fruit

    a macaroon with edible diamonds

    white chocolate truffle

    and lots of sprinklings of a 24 carat gold leaf

    To top it off you get a gold leaf wrapped Flake and a spoon.

    The ice cream takes 15 minutes to make and weighs 350g so has to be held in 2 hands.

    What is the purpose of this?

    None of the ingredients are nutritious in anyway.

    Have we stopped to question why we would indulge and spend so much of our time making a product that can be contributing to us and others getting sick?

    How do we honestly feel after eating this – light and nourished or sick, heavy and dull?

    We seem to constantly be focused on creating the next most weird and wacky food product just because we can.

    Food is there to nourish our bodies so that we can best commit and contribute to society.

    Why is it that instead we are so determined to dull and obliterate the natural vitality that our bodies would hold if we ate to nourish?

    I know that there was so much junk food that I would eat, but as my eating habits changed and I started to feel less symptoms in my body as a result and more energy, this has become much more valuable to me than going for the taste buds factor, which only lasts short term and leaves us craving for more.

    I have found that I am much more aware of what is going on around me when I eat foods that are not comforting but leave me feeling awake, alive and alert.

    My life then becomes less complicated as I am able to make smart decisions ahead of time, rather then finding myself in situations and then questioning how I got there because I chose not to see what was going on but instead weighed myself down with the wrong foods.

  31. An article in the Daily Mail, 2nd June 2018, says “Sweets face ban from the checkout.”

    Sweets and chocolates will be removed form supermarket checkouts and stores will be banned from offering two-for-one deals on junk food.

    So called ‘guilt lanes’ are set to be axed over concerns that they provoke children to pester parents for sweets as they prepare to pay.

    It also forms part of the Government strategy on child obesity to put in place a 9pm watershed on adverts promoting foods high in sugar and salt from 2020.

    A guilt lanes ban was first talked about in 2013 but the policy, along with proposed restrictions on adverts, was one of many removed when the strategy was watered down following criticism.

    But according to another daily newspaper, the Prime Minister will revive the guilt lane ban as a proposal, along with the 9pm watershed for junk food ads. Ministers will also consider a ban on the use of cartoon characters to promote junk food, and consult on laws to bar retailers from selling energy drinks to under-16’s.

    While healthy eating campaigners are expected to welcome the proposals, they are likely to be met with a fierce backlash from retailers.

    It recently emerged that the childhood obesity crisis was growing, with more than 22,500 ten and eleven year olds now classed as being severely obese.

    The other daily newspaper also reports that documents outlining the strategy read: ‘Where food is placed in shops, and how it is promoted can influence the way we shop and it is more common for HFSS (high in fat, sugar and salt) products to be placed in the most prominent places in store as well as sold on promotion, eg with ‘buy one get one free’ offers.

    This policy was first talked about in 2013 and yet, five years later we are still nowhere near getting it approved.

    Why is it so hard to get policies like these approved when the benefits are obvious to all?

    Why do the supermarkets have so much influence over what legislation the Government can bring in when it comes to their profit lines?

    Why aren’t the resultant long term benefits a policy like this will have on people’s health, health services and other Government funding, made more of a priority than the backlash from retailers?

    Is it possible that, we as a society, have a long way to go before we start to make the health and well-being of many people more important than the few shareholders that will benefit from that extra bit of profit?

  32. Eating in Estonia has been so interesting.

    There is an emphasis on fresh, local, seasonal food.

    Much care is taken in the preparation; little touches adding subtle flavours.

    The portion sizes are modest.

    People eat pretty slowly.

    Even on a ferry a selection of delicious soups were on offer, no junk food in sight.

    The experience was a marked contrast to the norm in the UK and it has brought an opportunity to consider my own eating habits.

  33. I read about a well-known soft drink recently which was first marketed as a ‘medicine’ for tiredness and headaches.

    Looking at an early advertisement I notice that it was geared at women with the headliner –

    “The Ideal Brain Tonic” – relieves mental and physical exhaustion.

    When I have thoughts about this product today whilst it is not marketed in the same way over 100 years later it is still used by people to ‘relieve’ headaches and tiredness. It is a drink that peps people up to keep going and to numb and avoid unwanted symptoms.

    What I find most interesting is that it was created and marketed with that intention and then over 100 years later it is still being used for that purpose.

    It makes me question our responsibility when we put out any product as the quality in which it is produced and the intended purpose lives on and this can either be healing humanity or harming as this popular beverage clearly is.

    Any true medicine would never relieve but would support us to get to the root cause of our symptoms.

  34. Talking to a mum about school holiday clubs for kids.

    Her daughter had been on an away week and had come back buzzed up and lacking in vitality from all the junk food.

    Toast and jam or sugary cereal for breakfast, unhealthy packed lunch, pasta and the like for dinners.

    She said she was all over the place and it took her a while to reset back to health, before she had her daughter back – her skin and eyes glowing and able to engage fully again.

    What a real life experiment on the impact of junk food!

  35. A conversation this week with colleagues about their healthy eating regimes.

    They were sharing their practice of ‘F*#! It Friday’.

    They eat strictly ‘clean’ all week then eat and drink whatever they want on a Friday. It is usually a blow out with heaps of junk food and booze.

    They said this is how they can handle the tension of not eating what they want the rest of the week.

    We talked about will-power and how it doesn’t work over the long term.

    We talked about whether there is another way. A way to eat based on how the body feels and how we know it will respond to different foods.

    If we can tune in to what makes us feel heavy or tired or sick or racy or gross and what makes us feel light and vital and nourished, then the body gets a louder voice in our choices.

    In my experience, when we listen to that voice, the body gets what it needs every day and we don’t feel we ‘have gone without all week’ or ‘we deserve to have a day off’. We can ditch all the rules and beliefs around eating, which brings a simplicity back to our food choices.

  36. The Guardian – 29 September 2018

    A study has found that eating junk food increases the risk of becoming depressed, prompting doctors to give dietary advice to patients as part of their treatment for depression.

    The study was published in the Journal Molecular Psychiatry where the findings come from an analysis by researchers from Britain, Spain and Australia who examined 41 previous studies on the links between diet and depression.

    So this is evidence on a big scale, confirming that junk food has an affect on our mental health. In other words our diet, what we eat, affects us.

    Whilst there will be more and more research of this kind, would it be wise to stop and consider something else?

    What makes a person crave junk food and is there some truth in the combination of salt, sugar and fat contained in many of these foods that we know are addictive?

    Is this blog presenting some interesting facts for us all to consider right now?

    WHY do other animals stick to a certain diet, which is what their species have done all along?

    WHY do we seem to have a mind that wants more and more of what is harming our body?

    Does someone give up on life and become depressed because they cannot stop eating junk food, or is it because of the weight issue or what?

    Do we need to keep asking questions and then seriously study those like the author of this website who was a junk food junkie for many decades and overweight and feeling depressed?

    Anecdotal evidence needs to be out in the public domain so more of us can understand, because we generally can relate to others. It seems all our scientific evidence is great for acquiring more knowledge and more solutions, but does it really cut it and get to the root cause?

    We have studies all over the world being published daily and have we asked where has it got us if we are being honest?

    What are we championing and how can we use future studies to reduce the illness and disease statistics that we are currently faced with?

  37. Talking to a newsagent about his extensive display of chocolate, sweets and crisps.

    He said people have their go-tos and often buy the same thing time and time again.

    He said addiction is good for his business – he encourages it.

    So long as people are addicted, they are buying his products and he is making money.

    It feels like so many of us are in on this arrangement – whether on the side of demand or supply.

  38. At a service station recently I saw a display containing bars of chocolate as long as an adult’s leg.

    Another customer saw me looking at them and commented that they would be great for a boring Sunday afternoon.

    She told me about a packet of biscuits she had seen that was the same length and how there is a trend.

    Clearly the producers have cottoned on to the super size demand.

    Why buy several small packets when you can buy one big one?

    It makes me wonder if our consumption is going up or if the packaging is simply reflecting what we are already consuming.

    Perhaps we are simply more comfortable with the level of our consumption being seen now, in one massive packet, whereas before we could hide it lots of smaller purchases. Whether that ‘hiding’ was with those around us or with and from ourselves.

  39. The Week – 8th December 2018

    The World’s “Diabolical” Diet.

    According to a new report from the University of London’s Centre for Food Policy, around the world 30% of children do not eat fruit every day, yet 44% drink sugary drinks daily.

    It warns that, overall standards of diets in countries rich and poor are “diabolical”.

    A professor at the University said: “There’s not any income group that’s eating enough vegetables, whole grains or legumes. This is a problem that goes across income groups in all parts of the world.”

    Her report warns that globally about 150.8 million children aged under-five are stunted, 50.5 million are wasted and 38.3 million are overweight.

    The Guardian reports that the growing demand, especially in Asia and Africa, for processed foods is likely to be exacerbating the problem. Of 23,000 food products that were tested, 69% were found to be of relatively low nutritional value.

    When we talk about processed foods we generally associate it with the western way of life and we are usually taking about pre-packaged fast food or, as some like to call it, junk food.

    It is easy to see how this type of food can proliferate in countries that never had it before. The food tastes nice and excites us because it is laden with sugar and salt and on top of that, there is the convenience factor – at the end of a long day, we don’t want to cook or the children are complaining that they are hungry, so we go to what is easy – and more often than not, processed foods and vegetables tend not to go hand in hand.

    The figures in this report are quite alarming. Not least that reports like this do not show the actual true figures which are usually much higher, but because it shows there are a lot of children in this world that are under-nourished, which has the potential for further illnesses or diseases later on in life for these children, increasing already overburdened health systems.

    Is it possible that this type of food, because of the low nutritional value, does not truly benefit anyone?

    The report talks about this problem in all income groups in all parts of the world which means no one is exempt from this.

    At the end of the day as parents we have the biggest responsibility to ensure our children are being fed and nourished adequately.

    The governments and those in authority can only do so much to promote healthier eating but the responsibility lies with us to ensure that no child is ever under-nourished.

  40. This week I watched someone drink a caffeinated fizzy drink for breakfast.

    Drinking that in the same way others would drink water or a cup of tea.

    It was clear this was nothing exceptional for them. Just an every day thing.

    What would that do to the body, to process that as the first thing to be consumed after a night’s sleep?

  41. The Guardian – 7 March 2020

    Hospitals See Surge in Child Sleep Disorders

    This news story has been reported by way of comment, dated 8 March 2020 on our blog – The Real Truth about Sleep.

    However, it feels pertinent to extract a piece taken from the article to expand this blog about Junk Foods.

    The founder of a private sleep clinic in London said that research showed that not sleeping well also “creates an imbalance in our hunger hormones – Ghrelin and Leptin”.

    High levels of Ghrelin mean we are likely to eat more often and low levels of Leptin mean we find it hard to recognise when we are full. When we are tired, we are also more likely to make poor food choices – such as sugary, fatty and salty foods.

    So here we have it repeated in another way by a sleep specialist – the detail of what is possibly happening because we do not take this sleep stuff seriously.

    What if we made new choices and started a daily rhythm where sleep was at the top of our agenda and we made sure we got to bed early every single day?

    What if we became a living science (because that is what we really are) and put it to the test?

    Go to bed consistently before 9pm – read our blog called ( 9 o’clock hoover) and see what happens to our food choices?

    How many of us have clocked it that when we have loads of sleep, we are not pulling on the junk foods but as soon as we feel tired, we go for it?

    What if it is down to these hormones mentioned above?

    What if our body is communicating to us that SOMETHING IS NOT RIGHT, but we seem to be geared to just keep going until something happens and even then we tend to override whatever comes up and operate same same and carry on?

    What if obesity need not exist if we simply made different choices and put the fast food junk foods industry out of business forever?

    Lots of what if questions to consider here but nothing seems to be working and we have childhood obesity on the rise in epic proportions.

    Have we thought about it – these kids are our future generations of adults, so what is going to be the real health state of our world?

  42. Flicking through today’s newspaper, I was sure I saw an ad with green in it which looked like salad. Yes a famous fast food chain is saying you can have a choice – chips or salad.

    I had to take 2 and go back again and re-read the details. It was offering a medium size portion of chips so to me this is a no brainer.

    Who on earth walks into these places with the thought of a healthy salad next to their burger full with the trimmings?

    Is it time to get real and not play games, as we all know we want to get healthy and eat like those people who actually like salad, but we simply can’t as we just love the chips with our fast food lifestyle.

    More to the point are we not in a mode when we walk into these fast food places that chips is not negotiable at any cost and even if we went with our serious healthy head telling us what to have, we get to the counter and just order our usual as it’s familiar and it’s what we want and nothing else will cut it.

    Who is the green salad for?
    Why are the suppliers now getting us to have a pot of green leaves instead of chips?
    Why are we being given a large portion of chips instead of regular size fries?
    Is this clever marketing or something else?
    Who actually wins here and what is all this really about?

    All I know from my burger and chips days is there was no way I was going to have a cold damp salad instead of hot french fries.
    I don’t eat that stuff as I never go into fast food restaurants now, but I would love to see research on this where we study the reality.

    Reading this blog which highlights the salt sugar fat combo that is addictive, it tells me that the chances of switching to salad is not going happen and even if it did for whatever reason, it is highly unlikely to be achievable in the long term consistently.
    This is because I know from my own lived experience, fast foods are no different to what drugs are – we get hooked on it and want more of the same to give us the feeling we are seeking. It gets to a point where we need more, just for the same effect, as our body gets used to it and this is the nature of addiction.

    Fast foods are big business and account for a huge portion of the food industry.
    We cannot blame suppliers because we the punters, the customers are the demand.
    They continue to give us what we want and they have shareholders to answer to so they keep coming up with different things to make sure they maximise their market share.

    So think about it – you would never get a healthy person going into a burger chain but they would if they could get a salad instead of fries. This means more business as suddenly you are catering for a whole new range of people who would probably not have entered their premises before.

  43. Home delivery of junk foods is growing fast and to get us ordering we get the discount voucher through the letterbox as I did yesterday.

    Pizza | Burger | Fried Chicken – the famous names and logos with the images.
    The leaflet tells us we now have lots of choice and food freedom.

    Order what we want and when we want from the comfort of our sofa.

    So what exactly is this promoting – is it permission to eat what we want without any responsibility of the consequences to our body?

    Same day in the news – over 700,000 hospital admissions linked to obesity in England.

    Can we be honest and say this makes no sense?

    There is now enough evidence telling us that there is a strong link with junk foods and obesity and we cannot ignore this immutable fact.

    Yet we have an app so we can get it to our door as we may not fancy leaving the comfort of our own home.
    Think about it – with no movement we can indulge in more and have more choice with no one looking at us if we want to overeat.

    Could it be possible we will eat even more because we have so much available at the tap of our phone screen?

    I know from my past when my husband was slim but on his way to being morbidly obese, he told me he would eat triple burgers and chips and giant soda and then stop off at the pizza place and this was on his way to dinner at a friends.

    No amount of sporting activity could counter this regular eating addiction. The pattern continued and he got bigger and fatter over decades.

    On reflection, we can see that this happened as he was not being who he truly was and holding back on his expression in every way. A very sensitive man who was hurt by life and this world and he stayed locked in that buried stuff for many more years thereafter.

    This is real life anecdotal evidence that before we judge those who are overweight and obese, there could be a genuine reason why they choose food to comfort and bury their emotions and hurts from the past.

    We can blame these delivery companies popping up everywhere who bring us the foods which are poison to our body but let us be reminded that they would have no business if we the customers did not demand it.

    Until we as individuals start to take responsibility and deal with whatever it is that makes us eat in this way, then we stand no chance of changing.

    My husband is a living example of the gradual weight loss with no sagging skin with the weight staying off to the point he has not ever gone back to being morbidly obese over the past decade.

    It would be a wise move for humanity to turn to those who have walked the path.
    In other words, people who have lived the answers we are seeking.

  44. BBC News – 16 May 2019

    Ultra-processed food leads to eating more and putting on weight.

    The US National Institutes of Health said ultra-processed foods may be affecting hunger hormones in the body, leading people to keep eating.

    Dr. Kevin Hall – a lead researcher on ultra-processed food said it was like “pornography – it is hard to define but you know it when you see it”.

    Warning signs include

    • Ingredients you cannot pronounce
    • More than five ingredients listed on the packet
    • Anything your grandmother would not recognise as food

    Note the study outcome mentions one point of interest – the ultra-processed diet was considerably cheaper than the unprocessed control diet.

    The researchers say they cannot answer the WHY question as “the explanation is, for now, elusive.”

    If we just stop at this point and go no further –
    WHY have we not got to the WHY and WHY are we always subscribing to more research to tell us what we could work out with some common sense and a talking to from our granny or nanny who eat simple home cooked food and have not gone down the road of meals that are pre-packed and processed?

    Of course not all grannys or the older generation are doing this. We do have the modern day grandmother who wants to relive the teenage years and be seen to be living in the current times and that means socialising and all the rest, so home made is out of the window and packet meals are in as it means little time in the kitchen and that suits the lifestyle they want.

    Back to ultra-processed food and Dr. Kevin Hall using the word “pornography”.

    Hello – is this serious and what is this one word actually telling us about our relationship with food and eating such foods that are ultra processed?

    Is there some kind of seduction hooking us, calling us to do something that makes us want more and more and this then develops an insatiable appetite that lures us in?

    This point is well worth considering and pondering on.

    Next – Dr. Hall talks about the warning signs on the list above and again well worth noting.

    Next – is it not a “no brainer” when this type of food is CHEAPER than the healthy stuff?

    Who on earth with no time, living the fast racy pacy life is going to go for sensible food options that require more attention, shopping, preparing, cooking, washing up and then putting the washing up away. Really?

    With a dose of honesty we need to look at our individual responsibility.

    The current ra ra all over the media is about climate change and our waste.
    So WHY not look at every aspect of our waste including the food chain?

    Are we contributing to un-necessary waste with our choices to align to this type of diet where it’s done for us and we get to see the picture, like the look, buy it, open it up, heat and eat, or go straight cold from the pack?

    Do most of us seem to not hold a deep respect or honouring for the human body we have been given to look after until our very last breath?

    Is junk food called “Junk” because it is literally that when we shove it into our mouths?

    Reading this blog and then ALL the comments thus far, we cannot fail to notice that SOMETHING IS NOT RIGHT and instead of blaming the food industry, how about we look in the mirror and see the part we play?

    The fact is there would not be suppliers creating all this stuff if we the public did not demand it.

    This is a point worth noting and it happens to be a thread weaving throughout this website about supply and demand be it drugs, alcohol, caffeine, sugar of anything we want in this world that suits us, even if we know deep inside it is harmfull and not doing us an ounce of good.

  45. Daily Mail – 8 June 2019

    Childhood food allergies may be caused by eating too much junk food.

    A new study suggests that a diet rich in sugar and fat are fuelling an epidemic of allergies.

    Children with allergies were found to have much higher levels of harmful molecules in their tissues. They enter the body through food, particularly processed products such as burgers, bacon, pizzas and cakes.

    The scientists’ conclusion were that junk food could be responsible for the food allergy epidemic.

    Research has already shown that food allergies are more common among children in areas where processed meals are popular.

    The UK has one of the highest allergy rates in the world affecting more than 1 in 5.

    What is this piece of research telling us and is it something we could have worked out with a bit of common sense?

    We all know junk food is junk for our body – pun respectfully intended.

    Whoever came up with the word junk is talking about something that is considered useless and of no value.

    If we eat foods that have no nutritional value for our body then can we say it is useless?

    Whilst this study is about children – could the same apply to adults – where a diet of junk food could lead to allergies of some kind?

    Is this simply the way our body is communicating something to us?
    Our body has a reaction and it comes out in the form of an allergy?

    Have we considered omitting this and that from our diet and see if we notice anything different?

    WHY do dieticians and nutrition specialists who support with allergies recommend us to eliminate certain foods?

    Have we considered studies on those people who are totally and absolutely allergy free?

    How are they living and what lifestyle choices are they making?

    Could we take a close look at their diet of non junk foods on a daily basis?
    Could we learn something from those who are free of allergies related to foods?

    This blog is presenting the stats and the facts and bringing more awareness about the real truth about Junk Foods and Fast Foods.

    Would this be the type of education at schools – teach the younger generation what would support their body and what clearly would not?

    Nothing seems to be working and our insatiable appetite for eating foods that our body is not wanting is being shown to us through illness and dis-ease of all kinds.

    Humanity has a choice and is it time to consider another way, as the current way of living seems to be failing us and how we know this is because our body is telling us so.

  46. The Guardian – 17 July 2019

    NEPAL – groundbreaking research warns that Children under age 2 on a junk food diet linked to stunting and undernutrition.

    This observational study has been published in the Journal of Nutrition and illustrates that our 21st century junk food diet spreading worldwide is not just linked to obesity but also to poor growth in children.

    The study was carried out in Kathmandu Valley – 745 children aged 12 to 23 months. Findings revealed ALL children ate junk food, some more than others.

    Those who got half their diet from high sugar, high salt and high fat snacks were shorter than others of their age who ate less of them.

    This is likely because they have inadequate levels of nutrients that are vital for growth and development which would include protein, calcium, iron, vitamin A and zinc.

    So how have we got to this point?

    Packaged and snack foods which are typically high in sugar and salt and low in micronutrients are now increasingly available across the globe.

    “Even in remote places in Nepal snack foods and processed foods are available and marketing is occurring. Parents are choosing these products as in the US and UK because they are convenient and the child gets a preference for these sugary snacks. The driving force was convenience – easy to prepare and easy to feed.”
    Dr. Alissa Pries

    As with all research, we always hear there is more research needed and while we wait – what can we do right now?

    What if we just take a big dose of honesty and start by using our own innate common sense while we wait for evidence out there to tell us what most of us actually know.

    For any reader who has doubt, one read of this blog and ALL the comments thereafter, followed by reading every single blog on this website, there will be strong evidence to suggest that how we choose to live has consequences.
    We each have a Responsibility.

    We can blame governments and policymakers for not getting on the front foot and then blame all those suppliers but have we considered as the consumer it is up to us what choice we make?

    There would be zero need to supply high fat, sugar and salt snacks of convenience if we said a simple No because we can feel it is not going to support our young baby.

    So can we go with the honesty here now –

    Why are we seeking convenience foods?

    Are we tired or exhausted as life is way too much for us?

    Did we not sign up for this children 24/7 thing of taking care?

    Do we feel to overwhelmed spending time preparing and cooking baby food?
    Do we want what others seem to have – any easy life with no effort involved?
    Do we like the thought of things fast so we get more time out to do what we want?

    If a remote part of Nepal is on the bandwagon when it comes to junk food for very young children – what is this spelling out to us when it comes to world global health?

    What are the children we are raising going to have to deal with as a result of ill choices made on their behalf, when they were way too young to ask what is needed for their body?

    Is there a greater and grander Responsibility here that we may have ignored?

    Is parenting a job we are struggling with, as we want to continue “business as usual” with our lifestyle choices that were around before the babies came along?

    What is clear is things spread – it was only a matter of time before a country like Nepal were feeding junk food to children.

    What if the real stuff was just as easy to bring all over the world – have we considered that?

    OR are we resisting something here that may support our evolution because we just like to delay that part of our life that requires real Responsibility?

  47. A well-known fast food chicken restaurant chain is testing a new combination of fried chicken and glazed doughnuts.

    Customers have two options: a chicken and doughnut basket meal for $5.49, which includes tenders or bone chicken plus a doughnut; or a chicken sandwich for $5.99, featuring a chicken patty between two doughnut buns.

    And if you want just the doughnut, you can add one to any meal for $1.

    This doughnut hamburger is already a staple at state fairs across the USA and will now be tested in three states.

    This company already has form in creating strange chicken combinations.

    In the summer, it created a chicken sandwich with a well-known snack sauce with the chicken and sauce served on a bed of the snacks in between two buns.

    Other chicken chains are also creating similar whacky food combinations.

    What is the demand from us that suppliers are creating these combinations of foods?

    Is it possible that these marketing ‘gimmicks’ are just to make money or do we truly believe this is what humanity needs right now?

    In a time, where obesity rates are soaring and the consequences of obesity-related illnesses are close to bankrupting health services alone, is it possible that we are showing very little Responsibility in the well-being of people’s health with the food products we are producing?

  48. The Guardian – 26th October 2019

    Food Delivery Apps Just Help Fuel a Junk Economy That Can Never Fill the Productivity Gap.

    A bidding war erupted in the City for an app that links us to restaurants and sends the food by bike.

    This app is worth £5 billion.

    These restaurants are your typical take-away franchises and they have scores of bike couriers waiting to take the latest orders to people’s homes.

    They charge between £2.94 to £3.50 for delivery and most of them won’t go beyond 1.5 miles to deliver, so that means those that are ordering live within a ten minute walk or 2-3 minute drive away.

    Some may say at least there is no increase to the pollution levels, but a university in Manchester estimates that round 2.025 billion disposable take-away containers are used in the EU every year. Most are not recycled.

    Then you have the workforce behind these apps – 60,000 riders all of whom are “self-employed contractors” without a guaranteed minimum wage, holiday pay or sick pay.

    The highest paid director on one of thee apps is understood to have picked up £8.3m in share options last year.

    Takeaways aren’t exactly new. They have been around for a long time now whether it was a kebab, curry or pizza, but mixing the takeaway business with online access has increased the takeaway market to £8 billion.

    Of course the government is pleased because it shows their employment figures are up, which then translates to our economic expansion going up, but these jobs similar to many others like them do not increase the country’s productivity.

    As a nation, it is clear that we are getting lazier and lazier and because we are ordering from places that offer food that is typically high in fat, sugar and salt, we are getting fatter and fatter.

    Blaming these food outlets is not the way to go here. These outlets have been around for decades. The only people responsible here are the ones that are ordering the food.

    But why?

    Why are these apps worth £5 billion?

    Why are we eating so much of this food?

    Why are we not cooking from scratch anymore?

    Ordering food from these takeaways may make our lives more convenient and easy now, but is it possible that the more we eat of this type of food, it will produce ill affects later in life, which by then will make our lives considerably less convenient and harder?

  49. Healthline – 12 November 2019

    Junk foods can significantly affect inflammation in the body.

    Sugar and high fructose corn syrup are the 2 main types of added sugar in the Western diet.

    Sugar is 50% glucose and 50% fructose.
    High fructose corn syrup is 45% glucose and 55% fructose.

    A study on mice (as this could not be done on humans) where they were fed high sugar (sucrose) diets, led to breast cancer that spread to their lungs and this was partly due to the inflammatory response to sugar.

    In a randomised clinical trial in which people drank regular soda, diet soda, milk or water, only those in the regular soda group had increased levels of uric acid, which drives inflammation and insulin resistance.

    Sugar is harmful because it supplies excess amounts of fructose.
    Small amounts of fructose is found in fruits and vegetables.

    Eating a lot of fructose has been linked to obesity, insulin resistance, diabetes, fatty liver disease, cancer and chronic kidney disease.

    Researchers have also found that fructose causes inflammation within the endothelial cells that line our blood vessels, which is a risk factor for heart disease.

    Foods high in added sugar include candy (sweets), chocolate, soft drinks (soda), cakes, cookies, doughnuts, sweet pastries and certain cereals.

    To summarise, consuming a diet high in sugar and high fructose corn syrup drives inflammation that can lead to disease. It may also counteract the anti-inflammatory effects of omega 3 fatty acids.

    Do any of us ever bother to stop long enough to ask questions like these:

    WHY do we love the types of foods and drinks that harm our body?
    WHY are junk foods so popular and why do they contact excess sugar?
    WHY are we so addicted to ingesting junk foods to fill us up inside ?
    WHY are we not educated about all this when growing up in school?
    WHY are we all so unaware when it comes to what high sugar diets do to us?

    It is very serious when we read that our junk food diets are literally killing us.

    Without proper education and understanding, what chance have we got to make the necessary changes that are needed, if we are to turn the tides on illness and disease and that includes Obesity, which today is a global epidemic?

  50. A well-known fast food chain has just opened a new restaurant in Japan where you can eat as much as you want.

    The whole menu is available – 50 different items – including fried chicken, biscuits, pasta, fries, curry, soup, salad and dessert. On top of that you can buy all-you-can-drink packages for soft drinks and alcohol. They even have exclusive items such as rotisserie chicken, pan-baked potato casserole and a special fried chicken soup curry.

    The restaurant offers lunch and dinner menus costing approximately £14 and £17 respectively.

    There is a discounted price for elementary school students and children under 3 go free.

    All-you-can-drink on soft drinks are included in the price but you can upgrade to all-you-can-drink alcohol for an extra £8.

    The restaurant gives you 80 minutes to complete your meal.

    What is going on in this world?

    Why are we encouraging adults to overeat?

    Why are we encouraging youngsters to overeat?

    They say Japan doesn’t have an obesity problem. With unlimited fried food and soft drinks, is it possible that they may very well start to have one?

    They also offer unlimited alcohol with their meal.

    Vast amounts of calories will be consumed through the food and then throw in the calories from the alcohol as well and we have gone well past the recommended daily calorie intake.

    Is it possible that this will just encourage excessive alcohol consumption?

    Is it possible that eating this sort of food, in these quantities, may lead to obesity and all of its associated illnesses?

    Could this be classed as irresponsible marketing?

    Of course, we cannot just blame the fast food restaurant.

    They are only filling a demand from us.

    We are the ones asking for this, so really, the question we should be asking is – WHY?

    Why are we asking for this sort of food?

    Why are we asking for this sort of food to be unlimited?

    Why are we asking for unlimited alcohol?

    Why are we asking for unlimited food that we know does not truly nourish us?

    What is the quality of this mass-produced food going to be like?

    As someone who used to eat a lot of this sort of food, I know full well the consequences of eating to excess in my food choices.

    Is it possible that having a place that offers this sort of food on an unlimited basis is only going to tempt us to eat more than we should?

    Ultimately though, we have the responsibility for our own health and well-being and it is our choice to frequent this sort of establishment.

    Is it possible that we need to start to question what is behind establishments like this opening up and offering us a glut of food that doesn’t truly serve us?

  51. I guess this is what I call a Citizen Journalism comment.

    When I heard that a work colleague has just spent £800 which is $1043.00 as at today’s exchange rate, I have to stop and question WHY and HOW does it gets to this point where we spend this kind of money on food delivery only?

    This individual is one of millions on the bandwagon of FAST FOOD – yep pun intended.

    We want it fast and those bikers zip it to us, the app gives us options like we can get one thing from this diner and another from another restaurant and ALL because we can.

    I reckon that would be a great blog for this website platform – BECAUSE WE CAN.

    On that note, we do have a lifestyle choice and it is BECAUSE WE CAN.

    Fast foods some may say are a trend, but if we look at how quick this industry is growing and open our eyes when we are out walking, we cannot miss the man on the bike waiting to take the order to the customer.

    Having seen first hand and spoken to a range of eating places, it is clear this is now big business.

    Seeing the fast food burgers being delivered to an apartment that was literally a few steps from the actual diner, what came to me is – WHY on earth would anyone not just pop out and get it themselves, or is it simply BECAUSE WE CAN?

    How are we wired inside our head that allows for this kind of behaviour to even enter our thinking?

    Does someone spend over a thousand bucks a month because they need more and more and their choices are unlimited and as long as they are paying, the bike man will deliver no matter what the weather or traffic conditions?

    What if this type of food does not ‘nurture’ or ‘nourish’ us in the true sense and meaning of these two words?

    What if we are left void and empty inside, as the food is not cooked with the true intention to nurture but simply as a profit making business?

    What if that type of vibe, call it vibration is what is really going inside our mouths and leaves us wanting more?

    What if all the ads we keep seeing on our way to work and back home are luring us in like some kind of seduction, because it makes it so much more accessible?

    What if these colourful mouth watering billboards telling us what app will deliver this kind of food, is all we need to do on our part AND pay of course?

    Do we even care if we have $1000 bucks a month just to spend on fast food deliveries?

    How much are we earning and do we ever stop to ask is this a wise way to use our resources, which may not be there long-term if we continue on this road, as something may stop us or happen to us that makes us stop?

    Do we need science to tell us what we all already know – if we applied a single dose of honesty with our common sense hat on?

    So here we have a few questions from someone who likes to dig a bit deeper and comment by way of expression, so others may also then start to at least consider and have their own line of questioning.

    If we go along with the masses, say nothing and join the bandwagon, then chances are we will face the consequences whatever they may be and in my view, I doubt they will be favourable to our human body.

  52. – 19 February 2020

    Junk Food Diet ‘Damages Part of Brain Which Exercises Self-Control’.

    A study has found that junk food is addictive and damages the part of the brain which exercises self-control.

    A diet of burgers, pizzas and chips rapidly impairs the function of the hippocampus, which supports memory and helps to regulate appetite. As a result, people carry on eating such food even when they are full.

    The Australian study saw 110 lean healthy undergraduates split into two groups and asked to follow a particular diet for eight days.

    The lead author of the study, a professor at the Macquarie University, said the findings show that junk food makes people become less sensitive to internal signals of hunger – and therefore takes more food for them to feel full.

    He said: “When we see cake, chocolate or crisps, for example, we remember how nice they are to eat. When we are full the hippocampus normally suppresses these memories, reducing our desire to eat. We found that lean healthy young people exposed to one week of a junk food diet developed impaired hippocampal function and relatively greater desire to eat junk food when full. Junk food may then act to undermine self-control by increasing desire.”

    A study like this really only had the one conclusion that they could come to.

    A diet of junk food is addictive because it is loaded with the three pillars that will bring anyone back because it makes the food taste nice – fat, sugar and salt.

    As someone who weighed nearly 30 stone, I can say I was addicted to junk food and could quite easily eat the food of three people and it would always have me going back for more.

    For me personally, I ate this food because it tasted good, it was quick and convenient and because I needed the comfort it provided.

    Junk food is very harm-full simply because it is so addictive.

    Obesity rates are increasing all the time along with all of the associated illnesses and diseases that obesity brings.

    Is it possible that this study and those like it should be given straight to the government’s medical advisers?

  53. Newsweek – 21st May 2020
    Food App Overrun With Well-Known Fast Food Outlet Orders and Unable to Cope

    The app has become overrun with this fast food chains orders and is “unable to deliver to people down the road”, according to frustrated customers.

    The app even reported that an address next door to an open restaurant was “too far away” to deliver to.

    The fast food outlet announced that 39 Drive-Thru restaurants would be opening this week in both the UK and Ireland for deliveries and takeaways, after trialing 15 pilot restaurants in the South East of England earlier this month.

    Customers had been waiting with much anticipation for local branches near them to open, however some have been left disappointed after being told by the app that where they lived was “too far for delivery”, despite customers saying they were only a few minutes away and couldn’t understand why they could order from “the next town over”.

    In a test conducted by Newsweek, the app was unable to deliver to an address next door to the restaurant ordered from, saying it was “too far away”.

    One user wrote on a social media platform: “Absolutely devastated. Found out my local restaurant is open for delivery but the app says it’s too far away – IT’S LITERALLY DOWN THE STREET FROM HERE. How is it that I can order something from the next town over, but not from down the road?”

    The fast food chain responded on a social media platform saying: “Hi, our pilot restaurants are operating differently, with social distancing and smaller teams, this means we are unable to process as many delivery orders as usual. Please bear with us as we adjust to the new ways of working and prioritise the safety of our people.”

    Another social media user posted: “I live 1.1 miles away from your restaurant but I’m too far away for delivery. How close do I have to be to get a delivery?”

    In a statement posted by the fast food chain, the company said it would be reopening 39 Drive-Thru lanes. They said: “We expect a high demand across all locations. We are working closely with local authorities and we may determine that it is necessary to close our Drive-Thru lanes if queues cause disruption or put our employees or customers at risk.”

    What is going on here?

    Are we really complaining that we can’t get our fix of burgers, fries, soft drinks and milkshakes?

    Are we really complaining that someone won’t deliver our takeaway when we live within walking distance of the restaurant?

    Is this about laziness or is this about having a ‘right’ to have our food delivered?

    How is it possible that, as a race of so-called ‘intelligent’ beings, such a furore can be caused by the lack of fat, sugar and salt?

    We have this statement by the fast food chain that – “we may determine that it is necessary to close our Drive-Thru lanes if queues cause disruption or put our employees or customers at risk.”

    Is it possible that, by closing the Drive Thru lanes, this will actually present a risk to their staff because of the irrational behaviour that will inevitably ensue?

    Because of our need for this type of food, should we be starting to ask what is actually put into this food?

    Because of the irrational behaviour around this fast food chain, is it possible that we have become addicted to this type of food?

    What exactly is so special about the food from this fast food restaurant chain?

  54. – 4th June 2020

    Since the reopening of a famous fast food takeaway’s Drive Thru’s, people have been flocking to get their fix of burgers and fries but this has led to streets being gridlocked and even blocked.

    In one Drive Thru in Wolverhampton, paramedics driving the ambulance were left fighting the queues as they were prevented from passing because motorists would not move out of the way.

    In pictures, a steward in a Hi-Vis jacket is seen having to direct the ambulance out of trouble as drivers refused to budge because they risked losing their spot in the queue.

    Traffic jams have sprung up and down the country as the Drive Thru’s have reopened and mile long queues have been reported.

    There may be some understanding of this type of behaviour if we are queuing for something like medicine or water, but this is a “burger”.

    What is our priority here?

    Has our fast food takeaway become more important than common sense?

    Has our fast food takeaway become more important than our moral responsibilities?

    Has our fast food takeaway become more important than someone else’s safety or even life?

  55. Dr. Max – Daily Mail – 6 June 2020
    Page 43

    Our famous fast food chain has now opened after lockdown and there have been extraordinary images of customers queuing. Thousands of people have waited in their cars for up to 3 hours for their jumbo burgers.

    Dr. Max is asking the question “should we really be reaching for fast food at the earliest opportunity?

    He then adds that more than half of the adult population in the UK are already categorised as overweight or obese.

    So WHY are human beings so bad at evaluating risks?

    Does this have something to do with the r word – Responsibility?

    This blog is spelling out to us in its presentation that we have a 911 when it comes to the consequences of our modern day diets which have junk foods and fast foods.

    The combo of sugar, fat and salt does something to our brain chemistry and we want more of the same and many of us can relate to this. We eat the food and not much later we feel hungry and want more and we tend to go for the same type of foods.

    What if real education could bring in changes?

    What if we as individuals make the shift and then become a point of reflection for others so that they are inspired to do the same?

    What if we supported those who genuinely want to change but need direction?
    Trying or even attempting to change the masses has never worked.

    We have exhausted our solutions so is it time to ask – is there another way?

  56. – 11th June 2020

    Milk Chocolate, Dairy and Fatty Foods Tied to Acne in Adults

    Are you plagued by acne even though you’re way past puberty?

    A new report might have you avoiding certain foods.

    The study of more than 24,000 French adults found that sweet and greasy fare – especially milk chocolate, sweetened drinks, dairy products and sugary or fatty foods – all appeared to raise the odds for zits.

    The dermatologist that led the study said that the new findings “appear to support the hypothesis that the Western diet (rich in animal products and fatty and sugary foods) is associated with the presence of acne in adulthood”.

    A US dermatologist that read the study wasn’t surprised. She said: “This new study confirms what I have always believed, that proper nutrition is an important component of acne treatment.”

    The likely culprit? Foods’ effects on hormones, she said.

    “One of the reasons that this high ‘glycemic diet – high in sugar – causes acne, is that it changes the normal dynamic of one’s hormones. These high-sugar diets can cause a rise in insulin levels and this affects other hormones, which lead to the development of acne.”

    She added: “there are also ongoing studies looking into the hormones that cows are fed in their feed, which may also have an effect on the development of acne.”

    The new study focused on acne in adults and not on people younger than 18 in which they kept food diaries for a period of two weeks. They also recorded any incidence of an acne outbreak.

    The result showed that certain foods – dairy, fatty and sugary fare – emerged as potential acne triggers.

    Quantity mattered. For example, having one glass of milk per day bumped up the odds of an outbreak by 12%, and a glass of sugary drink raised it by 18%.

    Drink five glasses of either milk or a sugary drink a day and our odds of developing acne rises by more than twofold or 76%, respectively.

    Fatty foods appeared to do people’s skin no favours, either: One portion of a fatty (French fries, burgers) food or a sugary treat (sugared donuts, cookies) boosted the odds of an outbreak by 54% and a complete meal of fatty and sugary products upped the odds more than eightfold.

    Intake of milk chocolate also tied to acne risk, bumping up the odds for an outbreak by 28%.

    The findings showed that healthier foods – such as vegetables, fish and more plant-based fare – were tied to reductions in acne for adults.

    The dermatologist noted that for many, acne isn’t just a cosmetic nuisance. She said: “Acne patients suffer from low self-esteem and depression, and many go on to have physical scars, which they carry on their face for a lifetime. In fact, acne is an extremely important and emotional issue that frequently gets neglected. More studies need to be done but it is so important to investigate the role of diet, nutrition and chemicals, and their effect on blood hormonal levels and our health in general.”

    Why would we be surprised with a report like this?

    By now, it is well known that foods high in fat and sugar are going to have an adverse effect on, not only our bodies, but also on our skin.

    Surely it is common sense that eating a diet that is lacking in sugary and fatty foods is going to be better for our health?

    We know all of this and have done so for quite some time now, so why do we still choose to eat these types of food – and even more so, if we know it is going to contribute to an outbreak of acne?

    Now, this is not to say that we should never eat foods that have got sugar or fat in them, but if we are continuously eating these types of foods we can’t really complain about the effect it will have on us.

    If the foods we eat can bring on an external outbreak of acne, is it possible that it is having a far greater effect on our bodies internally?

  57. Daily Mail – 18 July 2020

    Dr. Max Pemberton – NHS Psychiatrist is informing us that the UK government’s “healthy eating guidelines” have been criticised as being too expensive for ordinary families.

    Are low income families really left with little or no choice about diet?

    Are poorer people more likely to be obese and have a bad diet?

    We all know that making meals from raw ingredients and preparing and cooking is far cheaper and more nutritious than any fast food takeaways.

    Can we agree with Dr. Max that people are not obese because they cannot afford good food but because they choose not to eat it?
    His take is that the problem is psychological not economical.

    Is that with anything in life – we do have a choice, even if we would sometimes like to think there is no choice?

    When we do go into that mindset of no choice, it is very easy to point fingers and play the blame game.

    We have research telling us that those from poorer backgrounds have limited ways of giving their children ‘treats’ so they use a food trip to a famous fast food place.

    Dr. Max goes on to say that we need to be reminded that the role of Home Economics in schools has declined, probably because it is considered old fashioned. As a result, we now have a generation who cannot cook a meal for themselves.

    How serious is this that we have young people who have no idea how to cook but we know that they are super fast on finding apps and other ways to order food or go out and get what they want, but not have a need for a supermarket or kitchen?

    Some of the elder generations would agree that good old fashion stuff has its place as it was always practical and simple.

    This website is full of practical, easy and simple ways to live human life that is polar opposite to how most of us are currently choosing to live.

    Dear World,

    Do we need to bring in real education across the board so that all of us EQUALLY are aware of what our food choices lead to?

    Extensively presented in this spectacular blog about Fast Foods, we can learn that these types of food are highly addicted because of the fat, sugar and salt combination that keeps us hooked and feeling hungry soon after eating a meal.

    What is it about us that associates reward (a treat) with food that harms the human frame?

    WHY does this not make sense and WHY are we choosing not to listen to common sense?

    Next –

    Do we really need government guidelines or do we have a habit of looking the other way and not paying any attention to what they have to say?

    What if our governments used blogs and websites like this presenting informative and educational lifestyle choices to reach the masses and offer another way to live?

    What if we asked our researchers to carry out observational studies on those ready to apply what this website is presenting, then monitor the results, repeat and confirm, to then see and feel the results from those who practice another way to live when it comes to health and well-being?

    Nothing in this world of solutions is working now, so it is in our interest to consider another way and check out websites and blogs like this, which are a game changer for anyone who is open to the possibility of living another way that does not harm the human body.

  58. Metro News – 10 November 2020

    One of our famous global fast food chains has told us about the Christmas menu, which now has 4 beef patties instead of the double burger and it comes with the fries and drink for a super reduced price, so no doubt we will go for that.

    Does that mean our belly will get used to eating more and then when the offer goes, we will be needing more, so we will buy more and so it goes on and in the meantime we will hear more about the obesity epidemic now becoming a worldwide plague?

    WHY is none of this making sense and who benefits and at what cost is it really to society?

    Human life and the model we have created is failing us because things are no longer making sense. When this fast food first came out, we all lined up to get a hamburger, fries and a drink of choice. Fast forward a few decades and we want 4 burgers and it is important to take note that there has to be a demand, first from us, the customer saying we want to consume more and more and then they supply and boom, business and profits increase in sync with our waistlines and the fat surplus increasing in our bodies.

    Those who think they do not put on weight ought not to think they are exempt from a diet of fast foods, which aptly has its name in the “junk” category of foods. If it was nutritionally supportive then it would never have gotten the name junk – worth noting.

    Reading this blog gives us some insight into the fat, sugar and salt content that comes with this type of eating and it is no surprise that all those ingredients combined are addictive and no different to drugs. We categorise and ban drugs but we have excess fat, sugar and salt killing the human frame and we think that is ok, as we just love our burgers and take out foods.

    Before we champion un-healthy food and label it as ok for human consumption, do we need to look at what is driving us to crave ‘junk foods’?

    We seem to be good at ignoring the signs – like Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes – both associated with lifestyle choices like fast foods and settle in the comfort that we are somehow ok and going to be ok down the road. What we forget is – we are making steps on the road of ill health and there is no getting away from that fact if 4 beef patties are now on the fast food menu.

  59. Metro News – 24 November 2020

    “Popular US movies depict an unhealthy diet that fails national dietary recommendations, akin to US individuals’ actual diets.
    Depicting unhealthy consumption in media is a sociocultural problem that extends beyond advertisements.” says the lead author of a study by California Stanford University.

    The top 250 US grossing films from 1994 to 2018 found 73% had food too unhealthy to meet Ofcom and Food Standards Agency limits for advertising to under-16s, while 90% would fail on drink. Snacks and sweets were the most common items in around 25% of the food scenes.

    Diets shown in the films failed US nutrition recommendations – 25% for saturated fats and 45% for fibre.

    So we have those that tell us this is not right and yet we could say the movie making people get away with it because they are delivering what the masses, that means most of us in this world actually want.

    This blog highlights clearly WHY junk foods do not support our body when it comes to health and with the amount of time we spend watching movies, this is cause for concern, as we all know these are like messages saying “ok to eat this stuff and ok to drink alcohol” in the name of entertainment of course.

    No point having under 16s and under 18s rules and regulations because we all know age does not come into what time we watch movies, eat junk foods or consume alcohol.
    It would be wise to wake up, get real and super honest about what we do know – even if it is difficult to admit.

  60. A well known American online video-sharing platform that has channels for children are promoting sugary foods and drinks to young viewers at risk for obesity and diabetes according to a new study.

    The findings were published in a report titled “Child Social Media Influencers and Unhealthy Food Product Placement” in the Journal Pediatrics.

    The researchers are saying that 90% of the foods featured in videos aimed at children were unhealthy. The authors noted “Kid influencers generate millions of impressions for unhealthy food and drink brands through product placement”.

    Yes we know our kids are a vulnerable audience to influencer marketing and sales can increase up to 28% according to data. This means the suppliers will continue until the demand drops or stops and that is up to us – the customers.

    The researchers wrote “As online media use increases among young children, kid influencers carry the potential to increase children’s exposure to unhealthy food promotions that may increase poor dietary behaviors”.

    What is the simple answer and how do we make changes and stop blaming anyone?

    Do we wait for the Federal Trade Commission to change or intervene regarding regulations?

    Do we wait for even more studies telling us the same old stuff, which we do already know?

    Do we read this blog and get some understanding of WHY and HOW we love junk foods?

    Do we become more aware after reading this presentation on junk foods and fast foods?

    Do we wisen up and wake up to the fact that it is up to each and every one of us to change?

    Our kids don’t just go to social media – they would have been directed there by an adult.
    We the parents, the guardians, the custodians, the elders around need to step up our act and get on with it and that means lead by example. If we are into social media and easily influenced and hooked by the very nature of what ads do then let’s be honest and call it out.

    We cannot criticize and blame those out there doing things to our kids when it is us who holds the power to not be influenced or led by what we know harms our children. But if we are not walking the talk and reflecting another way to live, the chances are these junk foods will continue to be the choice over any healthy leafy green vegetable. Simple really. No scientific double blind testing study needed. Just a dose of good old fashion common sense.

  61. This is Money – 17 August 2021

    A British online food order and delivery service has just expanded by linking up with 90 new food and drink sellers because customers are making 58 million more orders.

    Their job is to be the intermediary between the customer and the takeaway food outlet.

    The company has reported a 700% rise last month in its food deliveries.

    Just to clarify – UK customers made 58 million more orders with this company alone in the first half of 2021. Note there are other companies offering the same service so this one statistic alone confirms as a nation, Britain is relying much on eating food not bought or cooked at home.

    Next we look at another staggering statistic – do any of us have any clue what a 700% rise means or actually is?

    Are we adding to the statistics as this is one of our lifestyle choices – get the app, scroll away, order, pay, relax and eat what we want, when we want, as much as we want Because We Can?

    We entertain those thoughts that tell us we deserve it, we work hard or why not or simply the craving of food per se. Maybe we just have disposable income and want to spend or we like to be the victim of lockdown restrictions and this is one of our self-medication choices.

    76% rise in orders apparently because more consumers have been encouraged to order meals online as there are lockdown restrictions and the eating out venues have shut their doors.

    This company has strong revenue and not only from the UK. Its division in Germany had a 76% rise and 39% in Canada.

    What we can say is that we have nations now addicted to fast foods that we can get delivered to the comfort of our home. Firstly, the UK has not been stopping us from visiting a supermarket or the millions of local food shops to purchase our food, take it home, prepare and cook it. We could say for most this may be a boring option or a time consuming task that is better spent on other things. Whatever our reasons for going for fast food it is worth examining and discussing.

    This blog is spectacular in its delivery as it presents stuff we may not yet be aware of like the combo of fat, sugar and salt that keeps us going back for more and more.

    What we need to be honest and admit is we love our easy life or not taking the responsibility to get off our butts and make the move to cook from fresh and value that as important as all those other things we do during the day.

    Why is it that cooking food is not a regular thing most of us tend to do as we put work first, or screentime or chit chat or tv watching to name a few?

    We have an overstretched National Health Service where we find many visiting are there from ill lifestyle choices. The word ‘ill’ being used in this context to say it is not in any way helpful, beneficial or healing to eat foods that bludgeon our body.

    Can we go as far as to say junk foods and all those fast foods we are hooked into ordering and having delivered to our door are merely an attack on the human frame?

  62. Study Finds – 24 September 2021

    1 in 5 parents are saying that their children are eating more junk food since the pandemic started – according to a new study.

    2,000 parents of American children aged 3 to 18 – research at the University of Michigan Health C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital.

    20% of parents admit being too “stressed” to cook.
    40% of parents reported being too busy to cook.
    1 in 6 say their child consumes fast foods at least twice a week.

    We are all aware that the pandemic disrupted daily family routines.

    The researchers stated that the families’ views on fast food consumption varied based on the parents’ perceptions of their child’s weight.

    “Parents who said their kids are overweight were almost twice as likely to say their children have fast-food at least twice a week, compared to those who said their kids are at a normal weight.

    85% said fast food is unhealthy for their children
    84% feel it is “okay” in moderation

    72% stated when stressed for time, fast food is a good family option
    33% say fast food is good value for money
    24% feel it is less expensive than making meals at home

    Parents generally do not dictate their kids’ food choices at fast food restaurants.
    88% allow their children to choose what they eat.

    “One fast food meal often exceeds the recommended fat, sodium and calorie intake for the entire day, without providing many nutrients”.

    “Parents who said their children were overweight were almost twice as likely to report their child has a soft drink with their fast food, compared to other families.”

    “Consuming sugary drinks poses a real health risk to both children and adults. It increases children’s risk of excess weight gain and tooth decay and preventable conditions such as Obesity.” Dr. Freed – Paediatrician

    Dear World

    Is this any surprise and do we need more research studies telling us about the harm caused by fast food consumption? This article says it all really – giving us the ins and outs of what fast food, let’s call it junk foods is all about.

    There is no decent nutritional advisor in the land that would condone and agree with fast foods for our children.

    What these statistics highlight is the lack of real education needed for parents and children.

    Imagine if schools from day dot started educating by way of presentation what the value and importance is of drinking water?
    What hydration from water does inside our body and how this helps not only our brain but all our organs and tissues.

    If water was being consumed often and without any additives, our kids would not be pulling to sugary beverages.

    Then we bring in more presentations like this article about Junk Foods and other articles on this website like “We Are What We Eat” and “Obesity”.

    How else will our kids or parents know any different?

    It is staggering to read that 85% know junk foods are unhealthy for their kids and yet 84% say it is ok in moderation.

    Where did this come from and WHY on earth is it making no sense at all?

    We seem to have no time is a big thing in our world and yet are we paying attention to what is of value and importance regarding our health and well being?

    If we look after it by making the effort to shop, prepare and cook meals for ourselves and our children, we may just reap the benefits down the road in life.

    These children are our future adult population and at this rate, we can be certain that we will have even more illnesses and dis-eases in the future coming from lifestyle choices such as eating junk foods and making that our daily diet.

  63. Keck Medicine of USC – 10 January 2023

    A study from Keck Medicine, University of Southern California published in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology found that eating fast food is associated with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, potentially life-threatening condition in which fat builds up in the liver.

    Research has discovered that people with Obesity or Diabetes who consume 20% or more of their daily calories from fast food have severely elevated levels of fat in the liver compared to those who consume less or no fast food. And the general population has moderate increases of liver fat when 1/5 or more of the diet is fast food.

    While previous research has shown a link between fast food and Obesity and Diabetes, this is one of the first studies to demonstrate the negative impact of fast food on Liver health.

    The findings also revealed a relatively modest amount of fast food, which is high in carbohydrates and fat, can hurt the liver.

    Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, also known as liver steatosis can lead to cirrhosis or scarring of the liver, which can cause liver cancer or failure. Liver steatosis affects over 30% of the U.S. population.

  64. King’s College London – 15 September 2023

    25% of people who regularly snack on unhealthy foods are at risk of developing Heart Disease or having a Stroke, according to researchers from King’s College London.

    50% of the participants did not match the healthiness of their meals to their snacks.
    This difference has a negative effect on health measures, such as blood sugar and fat levels.

    “95% of us snack and 24% of our calories come from snacks”
    Dr. Sarah Berry – reader in Nutritional Sciences

    Intake from snacks such as cereal bars, pastries and fruit.

    47% of people eat 2 snacks a day
    29% eating more than 2 snacks a day

    Poor quality snacks, such as highly processed food and sugary treats were associated with poorer health markers and left people feeling hungry.

    Unhealthy snacks were linked with higher BMI, higher visceral fat mass and higher postprandial – the period after eating a meal – triglycerides concentrations all of which are associated with metabolic disease such as Stroke, Cardiovascular Disease and Obesity

    The most popular snacks consumed were cookies, fruit, nuts and seeds, cheese and butter, cakes and pies and granola or cereal bars.

    Greatest contribution to calorie intake were:

    • Breakfast cereals
    • Ice cream
    • Frozen dairy desserts
    • Donuts and pastries
    • Candy
    • Cookies and brownies
    • Nuts and seeds

    The timing of the snacking can also be crucial to health. The analysis showed snacking after 9pm was associated with poorer blood markers compared to all other snacking times.

    Snackers at this time tended to eat energy-dense foods which were high in fat and sugar.

  65. Medical News Today – 22 September 2023

    Ultra-processed foods, especially artificial sweeteners linked to an increased risk of depression, according to a recent study.

    Research is ongoing about how diet plays a role in mental well-being and the development of certain mental health conditions.

    “Ultra processed foods (UPF) are made up of manufactured ingredients with the addition of salt, oil or sugar to make them palatable and to help preserve them. They usually do not have any worthwhile nutritional benefits.
    Some examples include cold packaged snacks like chips or cookies, sodas, packaged pastries, many sweet breakfast cereals, candy etc.

    The highly processed nature of these foods often yields a cheaper product that is more shelf-stable and more palatable than a whole food item. This makes them easy to eat.
    They are also usually high in calories, fat, salt and sugar which can lead to weight gain.”
    Karen Z Berg – Dietician not involved in the study.

    The researchers found that participants who had the highest consumption of ultra-processed foods had the highest risk for depression compared to participants who had the lowest consumption of ultra-processed foods.

    The results also highlighted that depression risk may be particularly high based on higher consumption of ultra-processed foods containing artificial sweeteners and artificially sweetened beverages.

    Participants with high UPF were found to have greater BMI, higher smoking rates, and increased prevalence of comorbidities such as Diabetes, Hypertension and Dyslipidaemia. Moreover, they were less likely to engage in regular exercise.

  66. University of Bristol – 22 November 2023

    Obesity may not be the only factor to link ultra-processed foods to higher risk of mouth, throat and oesophagus cancers, according to a new International study led by researchers from the University of Bristol.

    Lifestyle and diet data was analysed in 450,111 adults over 14 years.

    Previous studies have identified an association between Ultra-Processed Food consumption and cancer, including a recent study, which looked at the association between Ultra Processed Foods and 34 different cancers in the largest cohort study in Europe.

    Results showed that eating 10% more Ultra-Processed Foods is associated with –

    23% higher risk of Head and Neck Cancer
    24% higher risk of Oesophageal Adenocarcinoma

    Increased body fat only explained a small proportion of the statistical association between Ultra-Processed Food consumption and the risk of these upper aerodigestive tract cancers.

    Lead author of the study – Fernanda Morales-Berstein said “UPFs have been associated with excess weight and increased body fat in several observational studies. This makes sense, as they are generally tasty, convenient and cheap, favouring the consumption of large portions and an excessive number of calories.

    Dear World

    We could say that Junk Foods represent Ultra-Processed Foods and whilst they may be cheap, tasty and convenient, we know that they come with consequences.

    Those that do not ever eat these types of foods would be certain to say that it is not tasty as they have a different diet.

    As this article spells out to us the combo that goes into these foods is what makes it addictive. Great effort happens not just in getting the fat, sugar and salt content so we are craving for more but the marketing strategies are designed to goad and hook us in over and over again.

    Nothing will ever change even if we know we could get cancer.
    What brings about real and lasting change would be to ask the WHY question.
    WHY do we crave these foods and what is going on for us in our daily life?

    Next –

    We do need to do more observational studies on those that do not eat Ultra-Processed Foods and those that used to eat them but are free of it now for over a decade.

    Could it be possible that they may have the answers we are seeking and it may not come from the next news article or study but from real life people that we could relate to, be inspired by and get a greater understanding to that WHY question.

    It seems to be that regardless of how many research studies we have warning us, telling us the fact or asking us to wait for even more research, we all know (yes we do) that these foods have no true and proper health benefits but yet we just crave them and we turn the other way or become blind to reading about it or deaf listening to anyone speaking the real Truth.

    WHY would we do that and what is going on for us behind the scenes that makes us consistently and repeatedly go back again and again for foods that are ultra-processed and harmful to our human body?

    As our Foundation article on this website says – anything we repeat becomes our foundation. On that note, we have a world 911 if the masses are consuming Ultra-Processed Foods and it is part of their foundation.

  67. EurekAlert – 28 February 2024

    Consistent evidence links ultra-processed food to over 30 damaging health outcomes

    The 32 damaging outcomes include cancer, major heart and lung conditions, mental health disorders, and early death.

    The findings published by the BMJ show that diets high in ultra-processed food may be harmful to many body systems and underscore the need for urgent measures that target and aim to reduce dietary exposure to these products and better understand the mechanisms linking them to poor health.

    Ultra-processed foods, including packaged baked goods and snacks, fizzy drinks, sugary cereals, and ready-to-eat or heat products, undergo multiple industrial processes and often contain colours, emulsifiers, flavours, and other additives. These products also tend to be high in added sugar, fat, and/or salt, but are low in vitamins and fibre.

    They can account for up to 58% of total daily energy intake in some high-income countries and have rapidly increased in many low- and middle-income nations in recent decades.

    Many previous studies and meta-analyses have linked highly processed food to poor health, but no comprehensive review has yet provided a broad assessment of the evidence in this area.

    To bridge this gap, researchers carried out an umbrella review (a high-level evidence summary) of 45 distinct pooled meta-analyses from 14 review articles associating ultra-processed foods with adverse health outcomes.

    The review articles were all published in the past three years and involved almost 10 million participants. None were funded by companies involved in the production of ultra-processed foods.

    Estimates of exposure to ultra-processed foods were obtained from a combination of food frequency questionnaires, 24-hour dietary recalls, and dietary history and were measured as higher versus lower consumption, additional servings per day, or a 10% increment.

    The researchers graded the evidence as convincing, highly suggestive, suggestive, weak, or no evidence. They also assessed the quality of evidence as high, moderate, low, or very low.

    Overall, the results show that higher exposure to ultra-processed foods was consistently associated with an increased risk of 32 adverse health outcomes.

    Convincing evidence showed that higher ultra-processed food intake was associated with around a 50% increased risk of cardiovascular disease related death, a 48-53% higher risk of anxiety and common mental health disorders, and a 12% greater risk of type-2 diabetes.

    Higher suggestive evidence also indicated that higher ultra-processed food intake was associated with a 21% greater risk of death from any cause, a 40-66% increased risk of heart disease related death, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and sleep problems, and a 22% increased risk of depression.

    Researchers say that ultra-processed foods damage health and shorten life.

    They point out that reformulation does not eliminate harm, and profitability discourages manufacturers from switching to make nutritious foods, so public policies and action on ultra-processed foods are essential.

    These include front-of-pack labels, restricting advertising and prohibiting sales in or near schools and hospitals, and fiscal and other measures that make unprocessed or minimally processed foods and freshly prepared meals as accessible and available as, cheaper than, ultra-processed foods.

    One of the outstanding points in this article is the fact that none of the reviews were funded by companies involved in the production of ultra-processed foods.

    To find this in this day and age is very rare and says a lot to the integrity of these findings.

    But whatever solutions they use to deal with this issue, it is just that – a solution.

    We can change the packaging, we can restrict advertising, we can prohibit sales, we can make the food harder to get, but, in-truth, nothing will change until we can move away from this mentality of comfort/convenient food.

    The more rules there are that tell us we can’t have something, the harder we will try to get what we can’t have.

    Is it possible that while the demand is there from us, the manufacturers will continue to supply that demand?

  68. Ohio State University – 15 March 2024

    Eating fatty food in the days leading up to surgery may prompt a heightened inflammatory response in the brain that interferes for weeks with memory-related cognitive function in older adults.

    The study, building upon previous research from the Ohio State University showed that an unhealthy diet even in the short term, especially when it is consumed so close to surgery, which in and of itself will cause an inflammatory response, can have damaging results.

    “The high fat diet alone might increase inflammation in the brain just a little bit but when you have surgery that does the same thing and when put together in a short amount of time you get a synergistic response that can set things in motion toward a longer-term memory issue.”
    Ruth Barrientos – Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health and Neuroscience in the College of Medicine at Ohio State’s Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research

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