Best Life: Surprising side effects of giving up fast food

Updated: May. 11, 2021 at 6:41 AM CDT
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ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) -- Fast food, it’s been a staple of American life since the first White Castle opened its doors in 1921. But now with over 200,000 fast food companies and a new option at every corner, fast food is quickly super-sizing Americans.

The CDC reports that over a third of all Americans eat fast food on any given day. We all know it’s not the best option for our health, but there are some surprising side effects of what could happen if you gave up fast food.

What is your favorite fast food?

“I love pizza,” said Ron Rovito.

“I do like the fast foods. I like the chicken fingers, French fries, cokes, and my favorite chocolate milkshakes,” shared Sean McMonagle.

So, what happens if you gave it up? You’ll be at lower risk for heart disease and diabetes. But experts say you’re also at lower risk for Alzheimer’s. Studies show the hallmark Alzheimer’s protein, beta-amyloid, was higher in those with high-junk-food diets. And with less blood sugar, experts say you won’t just lose weight, your mood may also improve!

Researchers have found a fast-food diet can damage neurons and even cause depression. But if you’re one of the more than 84 million Americans consuming fast food every day, experts say start small.

“Oh, my kids, they’ll tell you McDonald’s French fries are the best fries ever, and I agree, they have great fries, but we don’t need to eat them every week,” stated Misti Neal, MS, RD, Director of Food and Nutrition at Southwest General Hospital.

Researchers warn that giving up fast food can also cause withdrawals marked by irritability, mood swings and cravings, and say that these symptoms should diminish over time as fast food is phased out. However, the good news is that as your gut microbes change with your diet, you’ll start to desire more natural, whole foods, too!

Contributors to this news report include: Sabrina Broadbent, Producer; and, Roque Correa, Editor.

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