Effects of Junk Foods to Your Health: The Good, the Bad, and the Reality

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You may have a few ideas of the effects of junk foods on your health but not enough information to believe that they pose a big concern or stop consuming them all together. However, note why they are called junk foods: the term simply means that foods in this category have zero or very little nutritional value and are considered unhealthy. Here are some of the bad health effects you should watch out for.

Weight Gain and Obesity

Most junk foods contain high amounts of fat; saturated fat, trans fat and total fat. Many studies and research conclude that when one consumes lots of foods that are high in saturated fat and trans fat and exercise sparingly or not at all, the fat accumulates in your body and may cause you to gain weight or lead you to become obese. Being overweight or obese increases your risk of developing many serious illnesses and diseases such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes.

Furthermore, according to a study done and published in the British Journal of Nutrition dated August 15, 2007, there may be a relationship between pregnant women or breastfeeding women and their children’s risk of overeating or becoming obese later in life. Dr Stéphanie Bayol, the lead author states;

“Our study has shown that eating large quantities of junk food when pregnant and breastfeeding could impair the normal control of appetite and promote an exacerbated taste for junk food in offspring. This could send offspring on the road to obesity and make the task of teaching healthy eating habits in children even more challenging."

Effects on your Energy Levels

Junk foods containing high amounts of sugar can cause havoc to your metabolism. To stop your blood sugar levels from going sky high, your pancreas will work overtime to secrete high amounts of insulin. This is why the energy you get from eating such foods does not last very long and leaves you feeling tired, irritable and craving more junk foods.

Heart Problems

Junk foods that are high in cholesterol may be putting your heart at risk. High cholesterol foods contribute to the increase of LDL cholesterol in your system, may lead to blockages in the arteries over time, and in turn, significantly increases the risk of a heart attack and stroke.


Most junk foods are made to taste great so it is not surprising that they are so well liked. However, there have been studies conducted that indicate eating junk foods can be as additive as smoking or taking illegal drugs. A study published in Nature Neuroscience suggests that junk foods have addictive properties, and the human brain may react to these properties the same way as when addicted to heroin or cocaine.

Junk Food List

Although junk foods are very hard to resist, thinking about the bad effects to your health should be enough to moderate your consumption. Try to eat healthy well balanced meals and snacks instead of going for a junk food-fix like:

  • Doughnuts
  • Sodas
  • Potato chips
  • French fries
  • Hamburgers
  • Twinkies
  • Chocolates
  • Ice creams
  • Milkshakes

Bear in mind the ill effects of junk foods on your body and your health. Preparing healthy, home cooked meals is something you should consider for yourself and your family in order to enjoy the optimal benefits of health. Set a good example for your children by cutting down on junk foods and making better choices when eating out. Always remember that health is truly your wealth, so start taking care of it for a long and healthy life.