Fast Foods Are Unhealthy For Teenagers

1963 words - 8 pages

Teenagers are growing socially and physically and the decisions they make throughout these years influence their current and future health (Marlow). The decision to feast at fast food restaurants is an unhealthy preference which leads to a mixture of health problems. Teenagers desire instant gratification and quickly become overfed and under nourished at fast food restaurants. (Ram). “It’s extremely difficult to eat in a healthy way at a fast-food restaurant. Despite some of their recent healthful offerings, the menus still tend to include foods high in salt, sugar and calories and low in fiber and nutrients,” said Mark Pereira, Ph.D., assistant professor of epidemiology at the University of Minnesota (Cornforth).
First, fast foods are unhealthy because they include too much salt; the Consensus Action of Salt Health conducted a study which established that many of the items on the menus at Kentucky Fried Chicken, McDonald’s, Burger King, and Pizza Hut contained four times the daily recommended amount of salt for children and two times the daily recommended amount of salt for adults. Surplus salt can raise the blood pressure causing a stroke or heart attack and causes water retention (Ram).
Another reason fast foods are unhealthy are they contain too many calories (Ram) correlated to the rate of overweight and obese teenagers increasing at an distressing rate; fast food is considered to be the major causative feature. In 1976, 5% of the 12-19 year olds were considered obese, this increased to 18.1% by 2008. About 35% of the teenagers report consuming fast food six or more times per week. The American society has become an environment that promotes obesity by promoting increased food intake, unhealthy foods and a sedentary lifestyle. Obese children are at risk for Type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease (high blood pressure and high cholesterol). Obese teenagers have an 80% chance of becoming an obese adults (Keenan-Green).
Additionally, a fast food meal contains more calories than a healthy meal of the same quantity which swiftly add on pounds. The human body was designed to have a diet of low density high energy foods not high calorie energy dense foods, such as fast foods (Ram). recommended intake, but it does not provide any fiber or essential fatty acids, thus making it not very healthy (Ram). Another study actually found that some meals at a fast food restaurant had enough calories to satisfy a person’s daily caloric intake (Cornforth). Teenagers who make a regular diet of fast foods are prone to skin problems, mood swings, hormonal imbalances, blood sugar inconsistencies, obesity, and heart disease. The risk of osteoporosis may increase with increased soda consumption (Ram).
Moreover, fast foods are unhealthy as they deplete the body of minerals and vitamins; they do not provide any fiber or essential fatty acids (Ram). Furthermore, fast foods such as sausage, French fries, fried chicken and sauces are...

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