Fast food: The 5 missing essential nutrients no one talks about
A diet heavy in fast food can result in your body lacking in several essential nutrients; the trick is to find a healthy balance.
Fast food is one of the many conveniences of modern times that help ease the burdens of a fast-paced and demanding lifestyle.
As the name suggests, fast food is categorically fast. You literally just have to place your order to be served only mere minutes later.
There are also countless choices. We get to pick from a staggering number of franchises that have outlets actively operating in all corners of the UK.
Each of the fast food franchises offers a comprehensive selection of tasty treats to pick from.
Whether you fancy fried chicken, pizzas straight out of the oven, burgers that are grilled to perfection, or the dirtiest, cheesiest, most loaded fries – you only have to pick a place.
Fast food is literally that easy. In terms of taste and service, fast food is delicious and consistent.
And did we mention how affordable it is? It is cheap, much cheaper than almost all other categories of restaurant food.
Thus, it becomes very easy to become dependent on fast food drive-throughs, takeaways, or eat-ins.
The sky-high calories in fast food
One of the most talked-about drawbacks of fast food is the disproportionately high caloric content.
While the portions may be of reasonable sizes, and you may have chosen one of the healthier options, you will still end up consuming a ridiculous amount of calories.
Even a salad from a fast food joint will be doused down in dressing that will have calories in the hundreds, if not thousands.
So, if you are watching your weight, it is best to be mindful of how much fast food you are consuming.
But we knew all of that already.
After all, it has been one of the most discussed issues linked to the fast food industry for the last couple of decades.
There is, however, a more insidious problem with a diet that is heavy in the swiftly cooked-and-served, delightfully tasty victuals.
Find out if you have any vitamin deficiency
Nutrients missing in fast food
While the high calorie of fast food takes away most of the focus, the issue of poor nutrition is often times overlooked.
If you enjoy the occasional takeaway as part of a regular balanced diet, the absence of the nutrients should not have much of an effect.
However, a regular diet heavily comprised of fast food can result in your system developing multiple deficiencies.
The most common nutrients missing in fast food include the following.
A diet that is lacking in sufficient fresh fruits and vegetables can easily lead to a vitamin C deficiency.
Our immune systems require at least a minimum helping of the good vitamin in order to function efficiently.
Furthermore, vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps defend the body against toxic free radicals.
Food is already an inadequate source of vitamin D – the vitamin is produced by the body when the skin is exposed to sunlight.
It is even more likely for you to be at an increased risk of vitamin D deficiency when you only eat fast food.
Vitamin D is essential for the body to maintain bone, teeth, and muscle health.
The UK is among countries around the world where there is a serious absence of sunlight for a big chunk of the year.
The NHS advises UK residents to use vitamin D supplements during autumn and winter.
Red meat is rich in iron. So, if your go-to order is a burger with a beef patty or two, rest assured that you are receiving iron in your meal.
However, your body requires vitamin C to be able to efficiently absorb the iron from the food you eat.
If you have a vitamin C deficiency, the chances of your iron levels falling are high.
Iron is essential for your body’s red blood cell production.
Fast food options with fibre are few and dangerously far between.
Fibre facilitates the movement of the food you eat through your digestive system to your bowels and out.
If your regular diet is lacking in fibre, you will become constipated.
Lack of fibre can also result in increased inflammation.
If left untreated, chronic inflammation can contribute to illnesses like diabetes, heart disease, and a few types of cancer.
Potassium plays a major role in sustaining normal fluid levels in the body’s cells.
Basically, sufficient amounts of potassium intake contribute to the maintenance of your overall health.
Potassium helps lower blood pressure, sustain muscle mass, preserve bone density, reduce the formation of kidney stones, and lower the risk of stroke.
How VIVO Clinic can help
If you eat a lot of fast food, it is important to find out if you may be lacking any essential vitamins.
If you enjoy fast food, it’s important to do so in moderation as part of a balanced diet.
You may be able to benefit from our blood tests and take action before it is too late.
Keep reading: Essential nutrients missing from a vegan diet
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