Posts Tagged ‘healthy diet’

Fast Food: Slowing You Down

April 22nd, 2010

The hustle and bustle of 21st century. Today’s busy lifestyle makes it hard to maintain good food choices. Most of time things get so busy we do not have time to stop and think about what’s in our plate. We end up eating whatever is available in order to push ourselves trough the day. This usually means hitting our nearest cafeteria and local food chain, for a fast and calorie packed meal that is sure to curb hunger and make us feel mellow.  We have all been there. It feels good.

But let us not mistake that mellow and happy feeling for what it is not. It is certainly not our body telling us it enjoyed a fast food meal. It may feel like it though. What really happens is that when we are hungry, body is happy to get food, any food, so naturally we feel good and happy following a meal. Body rewards us by releasing endorphins, the feel good hormones.

However, in minutes following, body ends up struggling with high fat and calorie packed oversized intake. Fast food meals are traditionally devoid of essential nutrients and are full of fat and empty calories. Due to lack of metabolism pushing nutrients, body cannot digest ingested fats and all empty calories are stored. Body goes to rest and metabolism slows. Voila, the sleepiness and that mellow feeling – it is body telling us: “I am happy you fed me, but I cannot do anything with this, I’m going to rest until you give me some good nutrients to work with so I can digest all these calories”.

Ever noticed how fast food ends up giving us heartburn? Very uncomfortable. Not just that excessive fat and calorie packed meal slows down metabolism, it also causes indigestion and upset stomach. Prolonged indigestion can lead to conditions such as heartburn, ulcers, constipation and even diarrhea. Common reflex is to turn to antacids. Antacids however, act as little more than a temporary relief, and fail to cure, as primary problem is not addressed. This creates  two problems. First, as the name implies, antacids neutralize hydrochloric acid, necessary for healthy digestion. This minimizes digestion and reduces our ability to fight food pathogens. Second, when hydrochloric acid is low, fats, proteins and ingested foods are not digested effectively. No digestion means indigestion. Left unaddressed and untreated, indigestion morphs into chronic condition that interferes with metabolism and leads to weight gain.

In addition to obvious function, stomach acids act as  effective line of defense against food poisoned with bacteria, viruses, and parasites. By neutralizing them, antacids open the road for pathogens to successfully penetrate defense barrier, invade and attack our body causing food poisoning. Food poisoning can lead to heavy system toxicity that often requires hospitalization, heavy antibiotic treatments and prolonged healing time.

Why put ourselves in uncomfortable and risky situations when good eating habits not just maintain healthy weight, minimize and eliminate need for antacids but also boost our defenses making food poisoning unlikely? Where nutrition is concerned, little care and effort goes a long way.

So, nutrition can be challenging at times. But while fast times may mean fast meals – do not let fast food slow you down.

Steer clear of temptation.  Minimize or eliminate fast food. If no option other than a fast food place is available, make smarter choices. Take salad and grilled sandwich on a whole wheat bun and salad,  dressing on the side, instead of blt with fries. Get that protein in, get a little veggie action going and there you have it- metabolic boost that will get you trough your day on a third of fat and calories and no antacid.

If you are looking for more ides on low calorie low fat metabolism boosting five minute meals ideas check out Herbal Diet and its many products.

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