10 Shocking Fast Food Myths You Should Know

Sometimes, gobbling a bowl full of sugar can be healthier for you.

It is a well-known fact that fast food isn’t, actually, the healthiest food in the world. And while scientists, doctors, and nutritionists recommend we should cook ourselves and include an abundance of fruits and vegetables, sometimes we find it more convenient to order our favorite fast food meal or go to our favorite place and eat. That said, there are many fast food secrets most people aren’t even aware of, and this article will expose ten shocking facts you should know.

1. Hamburgers CAN decay

When it comes to fast food, numerous myths are circling, and one of the most common beliefs is that hamburgers don’t rot. The reason for this assumption is because fast foods and, in generally, all mass produced foods are laden with chemicals that aren’t safe for one’s health. That said, although hamburgers from McDonald’s, for example, dry out rather than rot the underlying reason isn’t related to the use of chemicals. The answer is that burgers or buns don’t have much moisture after the cooking process and when they spend a lot of time in open air, the moisture simply goes away.

2. Fast food isn’t good for your brain

Our brain needs a healthy, well-balanced diet to function properly and all fast food lovers will be disappointed to find out that their favorite meals don’t belong to that category. In fact, fast food has a potentially harmful impact on your brain. One study found that higher junk food consumption is strongly associated with weak memory. How? It’s because fatty foods and sweets increase insulin levels thus making it difficult for muscles, fat, and liver cells to absorb this hormone. One of the consequences of this weaker response to insulin is the inability to think and create new memories.

3. That fizzy drink is not so innocent

innocent fizzy drink

When you go to a fast food restaurant the chances are high you also order a fizzy drink. You’ve probably noticed that it makes you thirsty, right? The reason for the sudden thirst is because these beverages contain high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), a highly processed sugar substance. Despite the fact that HFCS contributes to the taste and makes your drink delicious, it’s bad news for your health. HFCS enhances thirst and makes you feel hungry, contributes to overweight and obesity, and it’s needless to mention it plays a role in teeth decay. This sugar substitute is almost always a marker of poor quality and can be found in foods with little nutritional value. Ironically, gobbling a bowl full of sugar is way healthier for you.

4. You might want to skip egg-based meals

In a bid to save up on production costs, a wide array of fast food chains use egg substitute for their egg-based, primarily breakfast, meals. Some ingredients found in this Premium Egg Blend include:

  • Propylene glycol – also used in anti-freeze, to lubricate air-conditioner compressors, and in deodorant sticks
  • Guar gum – a thickening agent
  • Xanthan gum – to prevent oil separation
  • Glycerin – a solvent found in moisturizers, soap, and some shaving creams

5. Spicy food may contain one shocking ingredient

It’s not uncommon for spicier fast foods like chili or buffalo wings to contain an ingredient called silicon dioxide. This probably doesn’t ring any bell for you, but you know it under the name – sand. When in chili, this particular ingredient serves as an anti-caking agent that allows your chili to look so fresh.

6. Even your French fries come with a spectrum of ingredients

french fries

French fries are, probably, the most popular fast food in the entire world. It’s not that difficult to assume all they need for this are seasonings, potato, and hot oil. Not so fast! Let’s say you’re about to eat this delicious food at McDonald’s. French fries come with 19 different ingredients including dextrose so your fries can retain their color. There’s also sodium acid pyrophosphate to keep the potatoes from turning gray after freezing and before they are cooked.

7. Taste of beaver for dessert

Fast food restaurants are famous for a vast selection of shakes, but they aren’t safe from questionable ingredients either. For extra sweetness, the production process for these delicious beverages includes castoreum, an ingredient that comes from the anal gland of a beaver. Castoreum is defined as anal secretion that these animals use to mark their territory.

8. Chicken Nuggets – almost no chicken

The American Journal of Medicine published results of the study which showed that chicken nuggets contain virtually no chicken at all. In fact, chicken nuggets primarily include bone, nerve, fat, and connective tissue. While this scientific study has been proved wrong in the video below, there is still huge skepticality behind it.

9. Not so healthy salads

Salads are incredibly healthy and supply your body with an abundance of vitamins, minerals, and other much-needed nutrients. So, when you’re about to eat salad at a fast food restaurant, you feel good about yourself because of a healthy food choice. That’s far from the truth as fast food salads are laden with sodium and saturated fats.

10. One burger can contain meat from multiple cows

One burger you order may contain bits and pieces extracted from up to a hundred of different cows. Once cattle are slaughtered, the so-called cheaper parts are tossed together for processing where they are mashed up in circular shapes and given fat. The outcome is a burger that millions of people around the world munch on a daily basis.

Conclusion

Fast food may seem convenient, but it’s far from it. Even healthy choices like salads come with extra sodium and unhealthy fats. This article showed some shocking facts about fast food that will make you want to reconsider your food choices.

 

References

http://listverse.com/2014/06/23/10-ridiculous-myths-people-believe-about-fast-food/

http://www.medicaldaily.com/junk-food-rots-your-brain-increases-risk-dementia-242256

http://drhyman.com/blog/2011/05/13/5-reasons-high-fructose-corn-syrup-will-kill-you/

http://www.forbes.com/sites/daviddisalvo/2012/04/13/before-you-eat-that-breakfast-sandwich-read-this/#377f7c5774c4

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/20/fast-food-truths_n_4296243.html

http://food.ndtv.com/food-drinks/there-are-19-ingredients-in-your-mcdonalds-french-fries-736343

http://www.businessinsider.com/castoreum-used-in-food-and-perfume-2013-10?IR=T

http://www.amjmed.com/article/S0002-9343(13)00396-3/abstract

http://www.businessinsider.com/unhealthy-fast-food-salads-2012-8?op=1&IR=T

Amna El Tawil

Amna El Tawil is a journalist and a fitness enthusiast who happens to be a total foodie. She believes in leading a healthy life while enjoying the occasional indulgence. When not trying a new restaurant, a new recipe or a new gym class, Amna can probably be found in bed with a book cuddling with her beloved Siberian Husky.

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