Eating fast food can have a range of negative effects on your health, both in the short and long term. In the short term, it can affect your blood sugar and blood pressure, increase inflammation, and mean that you don't get the necessary nutrients. In the long term, it can lead to problems with digestion, immunity, inflammation, heart health, obesity, and more. Excess calories from fast food can cause weight gain.
There may even be a link between fast food, processed foods, commercial baked goods and sweets, and the destruction of brain cells and decreased intelligence. Sweets and sweetened baked goods can even stimulate the brain addictively, which can lead to more serious illnesses. Eating too much sodium from fast food can raise your blood pressure, putting you at risk for heart attack, stroke, and certain types of cancer. It can also lower your good cholesterol (HDL), putting your heart and health even more at stake.
This is because one of the other potentially negative effects of fast food is fatigue and low energy levels. One study found that people who ate fast food were 51 percent more likely to develop depression than those who didn't eat it. Fast food breaks down quickly, causing a rapid rise in blood sugar due to refined carbohydrates and added sugar. Refined flour, used in fast food burger buns, pancakes, bagels and breakfast biscuits, is made from simple carbohydrates.
In a recent study, women with breast cancer were followed for 10 years and found that those who finished dinner early and had a 13-hour window before breakfast had a 26% reduction in the risk of death or recurrence from breast cancer. About 90 percent of adults underestimate the amount of sodium in their fast foods, study finds. Fast food is also linked to artificial sweeteners which can have a serious negative impact on physical and mental health. On the other hand, fast food restaurants are trying to clean up their menus by offering healthier options with lower content of unhealthy substances.
Children and teens who eat fast food at least three times a week are also more likely to develop eczema, study finds. For better weight management, lower risk of chronic diseases, and overall health, eating fast food every day may not be the best option.