A new experiment by the renowned Dr. Van Tulleken, arrives to make clear to us the devastating effects of one of the most devastating eating habits of modern society: the high consumption of ultra-processed foods. Just to mention some serious health problems: constipation, insomnia, anxiety, heartburn, headaches, rapid weight gain, mood swings and addiction to these types of foods Worst? Significant impairments in sexual desire and performance. This experiment was carried out in a new BBC1 documentary ¿What Are We Feeding Our Kids? The main goal of this initiative was to join the commitment of the United States government to address obesity in a much more profound way. And based on that, Dr. van Tulleken examined the harmful effects of ultra-processed foods on humans, regardless of age.
When we talk about ultra-processed foods we refer to products such as carbonated soft drinks, sweets, cookies, cakes, pastries, pastries and prepared meals. The most worrying diagnosis? High consumption of ultra-processed foods is causing a disturbing rise in obesity in children. It is no news to say that globally, childhood obesity rates have increased tenfold in just 50 years. Alarming data such as the situation in the UK come to light: 21% of children who drop out of primary school are now classified as obese, the highest level ever seen in this region. To test his theory, the 42-year-old doctor did his best to test a theory and experimented on himself.
For four weeks, Van Tulleken gave himself the task of following a diet based on a 80% of ultra-processed foods. At the end of such a risky experiment, he declared himself “beaten and deteriorated”, since not only did he gain 6.5 kg more and without a doubt this increase in weight was quite alarming. Also according to their own statements: “I have aged 10 years in four weeks. ”
While weight gain will never be a good sign, there have been all kinds of health consequences, like hemorrhoids. However, despite a keen professional awareness of the harm he was doing to himself, Van Tulleken declared himself quite incapable of controlling his excesses with food. In fact, he declared that despite feeling that he was no longer enjoying food, he could not stop and that is why he directly related to the consumption of ultra-processed foods with a powerful addiction. In addition, MRI scans of her brain before and after revealed that following a diet high in ultra-processed foods connects the reward centers in the brain with the areas that drive repetitive automatic responses. Usually this is something you can see in a person with addiction.
Based on the above, one of the most latent concerns was to detect the immense addictive power that is in these foods. He also discovered that although it is not exactly the same effect that occurs in the brain when smoking or drinking, it is quite similar. He just ate nonstop in a way that he didn’t really control.
These kinds of findings make us see much more closely the close relationship between highly processed industrial food and mental health, it is no secret to say that many of us eat to solve problems. Food is the new drug and it is very acceptable. In a certain way in many moments of life we feel that we should treat ourselves and the ads tell us that it is okay. According to Dr. Van Tulleken, the food industry invests many years and millions in refine “hyper-palatability”, that is to say, the flavor, with which we associate certain products. That is, companies refine the synergy between the different components of food, such as fat, salt, sugar, and carbohydrates, to ensure that be as delicious as possible.
The truth is that in the United States and many parts of the world, as a society we have been creating harmful behavior and a species of dependence with these “foods” for years and it is a habit that haunts us. However, there is no greater warning than seeing what happens after only a month of eating these types of products that we usually normalize. Based on this, the Dr. realized that the only solution is to treat the consumption of ultra-processed foods such as any harmful addictive substance and regulate it.
These types of findings come as a sharp and solid lesson on the devastating effects of continuing to sustain and normalize this type of diet. In just 30 days of this type of diet, it was proven that it is a lifestyle that ages us up to 10 years of age. It affects the digestive and intestinal system, it is a direct cause of hemorrhoids, low libido, erectile dysfunction, higher waist measurements, anxiety, insomnia, heartburn, and apathy. Finally there are no doubts you are completely different before and after eating like this.
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Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.