Eating fast food has become a way of life for many busy people looking for a quick and inexpensive alternative to cooking at home. However, there are many disadvantages to consuming fast food, including headaches, dental problems, extra weight, high blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and an increased risk of developing diabetes type 2.Although there are some items on the fast food menu that have less than 500 calories, such as Shake Shack's single burger with 360 calories or In-N-Out's cheeseburger with 480 calories, there are also some very unhealthy products that can be found on today's fast food menus. For example, Wendy's Spicy Chicken Caesar Salad offers 720 calories, 43 grams of fat and 1760 mg of sodium, while Burger King's Bacon Cheddar Ranch Chicken Salad has 720 calories, 50 g fat and 1,960 mg sodium. Even the Fuji apple salad with chicken from Panera Bread has 570 calories and 34 g of fat.
In addition to the high calorie content of many fast foods, they also contain a lot of ingredients. For example, Chicken McNuggets from McDonald's contain 13 ingredients in chicken alone and 20 additional ingredients in the dough and breading. A study by Kenneth Thorpe found that the prevalence of obesity alone represents a 12% increase in health spending per person. A 15-year study of 3,000 adults also showed that people who visit a fast-food establishment only twice a week gained about 10 pounds more than people who visited them less than once a week.
The American Psychiatric Association points out that most fast food meals are consumed with a soda, which contains a high sugar content and could contain caffeine, further increasing the chances of an addiction forming. A meal from a fast-food establishment may amount to more calories than the person's recommended daily intake level. Eating too much fast food can also lead to social isolation as people don't spend enough time eating and the socializing aspect of eating food is lost over time. On the other hand, eating fast food once a week ensures that you can give your body what it needs without harming it, and it also helps boost metabolism by making your body burn more calories.
In addition to the health risks associated with eating fast food, it can also be expensive in the long run as cooking at home is usually cheaper than buying from a restaurant. However, fast food is considered convenient as it is fast and easily accessible, and even nutritious at times. Overall, while fast food may be convenient and tasty, it is important to be aware of its potential health risks and to limit consumption to once a week or less.