Monday, September 25

A Look Into the Diseases Caused by Excessive Fast Food Intake

Meta Description: Fast foods, when eaten in excess, are notorious for triggering a range of ailments like diabetes. Learn more about this and how to adopt a healthier diet.

Although difficult to admit by many, the reality remains that fast food is unhealthy and can induce poor health when consistently consumed. Proof on the unhealthy nature of fast foods and junk has continued to grow over time, with recent revelations showing that they can cause certain diseases like diabetes and heart disorders.

The worst thing about their effects is that they become visible on the body alarmingly fast. In other words, an avid consumer of fast food is sure to quickly lose shape and become susceptible to a range of different diseases. Hence, this begs the question, “are fast foods truly worth the struggle that comes with their intake?”

This article explores the different diseases and consequences of consistently high fast food consumption. We also touch on practical means to cut down on fast food intake and lean towards a healthier lifestyle.

What to Expect?

Why Are Fast Foods Unhealthy?

The love for fast food is not uncommon. Adults, kids, and teenagers all seem to be on the bandwagon on this food choice, and the reason is not far-fetched.

Fast food, in the simplest term, is delicious. However, junk foods also have many health risks that can cause severe and lasting consequences in people who constantly consume them, irrespective of age.

The controversy associated with fast food is similar to a double-edged sword — the reasons fast food is so unhealthy are the same reason they’re so sweet, delicious, and desirable. The average regular fast food is usually very high in sugar, sodium, and trans fat,  which heightens the risk of weight gain, diabetes, and many health complications.

The Effects of Too Much Fast Food Consumption

The following sections focus on the various ill-effects of excessive fast food intake and how these ‘sweet’ food items bring about them.

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Type 2 Diabetes

Fast foods are usually filled with high sugar content, leading to a series of complications. For one, sugary foods typically increase blood sugar.

For healthy people, an optimally functioning pancreas releases adequate insulin levels to counter this rise in blood sugar. However, consistent consumption of high sugary foods leads to a constant increase in blood glucose which, on the other hand, affects normal insulin function.

Notably, consistently high blood glucose can cause insulin resistance in healthy people who consume many junk foods. When this happens, the effect is usually damning as they can develop pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes.

Cardiovascular Diseases

Sugary foods not only lead to type 2 diabetes. They can also result in further complications such as cardiovascular disease.

Typically, people with diabetes are at higher risk of developing cardiovascular diseases due to high blood sugar’s harmful effect on the body’s small blood vessels, causing them to harden. This doesn’t mean that healthy people can’t contract such diseases also.

Some cardiovascular diseases that junk foods can cause include:

  • Heart disease and heart failure
  • Kidney disease
  • Stroke

If you have diabetes already, then junk foods are a no-no for you. The same advice goes for healthy people since they’re also open to the above conditions. However, since the effects are less pronounced in healthy individuals, they can still consume fast food in moderation.

Respiratory Diseases

Junk foods can set the foundation for developing severe respiratory diseases that could morph into lifelong ailments for some. For example, fast foods are usually high in calories, and consistent consumption can lead to extreme weight gain and obesity.

In obese patients, the extra gained pounds can put immense pressure on the lungs, causing them to gasp for breath even at the slightest activity. Namely, they may find it difficult to climb the stairs, walk briskly, and engage in moderate exercise.

Furthermore, obesity is highly unhealthy and makes one vulnerable as it’s a potential risk factor for a series of respiratory conditions that include shortness of breath and asthma.

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The effect of fast food-driven obesity is very high in children. Kids are incredibly likely to become obese and develop a series of breathing complications when they consume too much fast food. For example, a study showed that kids who consumed fast food at least three a week had a heightened risk of developing severe asthma.

How to Transition to a Healthier Diet

Many people who consume excessive amounts of junk foods tend to justify their actions with a promise to balance up with consistent exercising. However, this line of thought isn’t feasible or practical in most cases. People usually underestimate how many calories they consume from fast foods and overestimate how much they burn (or can burn) with exercise.

Suffice to say, it’s highly unlikely to consistently trump consumed calories through exercise. Put into perspective, a 2-hour intense run will barely burn off all the calories consumed from a 20-minute junk diet high in sugar in trans-fat.

Most people can’t maintain an intense run for 20 minutes. On the other hand, people can easily munch on high sugary food for up to 30 minutes non-stop. Hence, there’s a glaring calorie imbalance when burning fat through exercise.

That said, dieting is the most effective method of tackling fast food consumption and its consequences. Therefore, if your goal is to eliminate the diseases that could spring from high junk food consumption, then stopping or drastically cutting junk food from your meal pattern is the best way to go about it. Here are some tips to successfully cut out junk food consumption.

Be Dedicated

Dieting requires much more discipline than exercising. Hence, you must ensure that you’re mentally prepared to quit your junk food relationship before starting a diet plan.

This requires consistent motivation and a reminder of why you need to focus on healthier food choices instead. Preparing your mind and stating your desire to cut off junk is the fuel that you need for this journey.

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Opt for a Healthy Diet Plan

Many diet plans promise fast, healthy results, including weight loss and healthier living. The demand for such programs has led to what’s known as a crash diet plan.

A crash diet plan looks to burn weight and give a healthier system within a relatively short time. Such diet plans include the popular keto diet program.

While crash diet plans are suitable for the short term, they’re not the best plans to go for in the long term and won’t do much good in helping you stop junk food either. Namely, according to studies, drastic controlled meal measures are hardly sustainable and can only be implemented for the short term.

On the other hand, opting for a healthier plan like the Mediterranean diet is one of the best ways to successfully cut off junk foods and incorporate healthier food choices into your meal schedule.

For best results, you should consider sticking to tailored meal plans provided by a digital meal planner. A meal planning app can be particularly vital if you’re struggling with diabetes or other complications.

Incorporate Exercise to Build Determination

While exercising may not do much on its own to alter the effects of excessive junk food eating, it’s an excellent addition to dieting. Namely, exercising and dieting instill discipline, and a mix of the two components can offer excellent results in your transitioning journey.


The best way to deal with the effects of fast food consumption is to cut down on its intake. Truth be told, controlling your cravings for fast food can be quite tasking. The major hindering factor to transitioning from poor food choices to healthier ones is a lack of dedication and determination.

However, using a virtual meal planner coupled with regular exercise can help you stay right on track in your journey to eliminating fast food from your diet.

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