The primary unhealthy thing about fast food is the high fat, calorie and salt content. According to a report in the New Scientist, food such as chicken nuggets and fries from major fast food chains contain very high levels of Tran’s fats that can raise the chances of heart disease in people who eat fast food on a regular basis. Some chains are changing their methods and are not using Tran’s fats any more.
Salt levels are often extremely high in fast food. This applies across the board to frozen and chilled ready meals as well as Chinese takeaway meals or burger restaurants.
Many fast foods are full of additives. Some additives are perfectly natural – for example there is an ‘e’ number for ascorbic acid, which is just vitamin C. But many fast foods contain artificial colors and/or flavors that are not healthy. Another additive to watch out for in Chinese food is monosodium glutamate or MSG.
High calorie food doesn’t have to be unhealthy in itself – and eating food with a higher calorie content in moderation is absolutely fine. But most fast food is full of calories gained from sugar – which has no real nutritional value whatsoever.
Fast food is getting easier to evaluate and many are the nutrition information available for people to make a better choice.