Image via @LoriShemek

Ultra processed foods dominate every supermarket today and fast food can be found in every city across the world. But that doesn’t mean they need to have a place in your diet. Such foods may be convenient to eat but are unhealthy. They are typically high in sugar, salt, saturated or trans fats, and many processed preservatives and ingredients. They also lack some beneficial nutrients.

Habitually eating unhealthy foods will predispose you to serious health issues like obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes – all of which are on the rise today.

Processed foods are widely available, cheap, and heavily marketed to us by corporations in pursuit of maximising profits. “Food stores, restaurants and even drug companies are not obligated to sell the healthiest option available but rather the most profitable one that they can safely get away with. It’s not a matter of being evil or good, it’s just the way the incentives align,” says physician and medical school professor Robert Lufkin MD.

A diet built around unhealthy foods will eventually require drugs to fix inevitable health problems. “There are too many vested interests in keeping people out of shape and unhealthy. It’s a two-part assault: one aspect makes money on creating the condition; the other part makes money treating the resulting morbidities,” says nutrition and weight loss expert Lori Shemek, PhD.

Eat healthy and stay safe. Go for whole foods – foods in their natural and unaltered state (eg: fruits and vegetables) – that prevent disease and benefit health.