Our diet and lifestyle have altered dramatically in the last 50 years. At one time culinary skills were passed from one generation to another, and a woman’s role was the ‘home-maker’. She wasn’t expected to work outside the home whilst her family was growing, and she often had other female relatives living close by as back-up.
The car was a luxury, so her daily shopping was usually done locally on foot. She purchased fresh food regularly, which contained far more nutrients than produce purchased from the supermarket weekly. As fast food didn’t exist, her role included cooking wholesome family meals daily.
Fast forward to now. Women learned the art of the short-cut, often through necessity. We drive to the supermarket once or twice per week to purchase food. We gravitate to fast option choices, which when short of time and adequate information, seem both convenient and appealing. Most of the food we buy is preserved, sprayed with chemicals, injected, or grown in chemically rich soil.
It’s no wonder we develop problems. We probably treat our cars with more respect. Few of us would dream of denying our car the appropriate fuel or oil, so why do we neglect our bodies so?
How Our Diet has Changed Over Time
Our love for sugar escalates uncontrollably. In the UK alone we consume 500,000 tonnes of chocolate each year, which is mostly made from refined sugar. Table sugar contains no vitamins, minerals, protein, fibre or starches; perhaps tiny traces of calcium and magnesium if we are really lucky, but apart from that – empty calories.
- Sugar lurks in some of the most unlikely foods: cheese, fruit yoghurt, tomato sauce, baked beans, pickled cucumbers, muesli, beef burgers, Worcestershire sauce, sausages, peas, and yes, even cornflakes.
- Be careful with steak and kidney pie. Saturated animal fats clog the arteries that supply the heart, brain and other major organs. This leads to poor circulation, and then to heart attacks and strokes. Smoking accelerates this process.
- Foods high in animal fat have been blamed for the increased incidence of breast cancer. So go easy at the fast food counter.
- We consume too much salt – often 10 – 20 times more than our bodies require each day. Result: high blood pressure.
Don’t let your eating habits be a recipe for disaster. With a little enlightenment and effort, you can come out ahead.
With most of us living life in the fast lane, we don’t have the time prepare meals like our earlier generations. But we can get healthy food on the run if we’re aware of the roadblocks and learn to detour around them.
Want to Know More about Healthy Fast Foods?
Learn how to live an active life with healthy foods that won’t leave you feeling greedy and weak-willed.
When we talk about living on a fast food diet many of us think of America and their menu of shakes, fries and hamburgers. Understandably, the US has been blamed by many researchers for setting the trend in the rise of obesity issues.
But let’s not be so quick to judge.
A new study reveals that America is not the country with the highest fast food consumption. Remarkably, Britons have begun to out-guzzle their American counterparts when it comes to fast food. When asked to identify with the statement, “I like the taste of fast food too much to give it up”, 45 percent of the British agreed, compared to 44 percent of Americans.
Despite menu changes, the major burger and pizza chains offer few healthy options. An investigation of the food sold by the four of the big fast food chains found that 17 of 20 products were high in salt or saturated fat or both. On average, the fast-food meals sampled had 274 calories per 100g of food, more than double that of a home-cooked roast dinner.
Some fast-food meals scored mega calorific counts. A Big Mac, medium fries and small vanilla milkshake contained 1,169 calories. You’d need to walk 16 miles to work that off. A margherita pizza and garlic bread had 5.4 grams of salt in the same analysis, almost the entire recommended daily allowance of 6 grams.
Is Fast Food Always Unhealthy?
Surprisingly, the answer to that question is no – if you know what to look for.
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