Did you see "Super Size Me?" The effects of fast food on his body were almost hard to watch. When you stop eating healthy and fresh fare, your body almost has to go to war with itself to stop the horrible effects of fast food.
Obviously the calories in fast food contribute to obesity. But guess what, if you eat 5,000 calories of broccoli every day you'd gain weight as well. The difference is you'd be hard pressed to eat 5,000 calories in broccoli in one meal.
The Dept. of Agriculture recommends an adult male get 2,800 calories per day with 93 grams of them coming from fat - max. At a fast food chain, that could be eclipsed in one meal. And the calories in fast food come mainly from fats and sugars.
Rapid weight gain and the subsequent change in your body's leptin production is one of the effects of fast food. Once your body recognizes this new level of leptin production as normal, your body will attempt to stay at the new weight indefinitely.
Blood Pressure, Cholesterol and Trans Fat
Last foods are high in cholesterol, salt and trans fats - because most fast food meals contain some form of red meat. All three of these things cause higher blood pressure, poor cholesterol ratios and unhealthy levels of trans fats in the body.
Plainly put there's nothing natural about a fast food diet, and since your body was designed to break down caveman foods (fruits, vegetables and cooked meats), these new chemical foods just don't mesh with your body's "food breakdown" systems.
For instance, trans fats are artificially hydrogenated fatty acid chains. Your body understands who to take apart and use normal fatty acid chains, but gets lost trying to break down trans fats. Unbroken chains of fat in your body are extremely unhealthy.
In the end, consumers of fast food will have higher blood pressure, higher cholesterol and higher trans fats in their blood. It's indisputable.
Lack of Nutrition = Fast Food Addiction
One of the worst effects of fast food is the lack of nutrition. I know, that sounds trite. But your muscles need protein, carbs and fat. They need vitamins, minerals, herbs and enzymes. They need water, oil and acid. They need nutrition.
In order to maintain your self-control, maintain will power, and think clearly - your brain needs nutrients. Many scientists believe fast food has addictive qualities. Sarah Leibowitz, a New York neurobiologist at Rockefeller University has evidence that shows fast food consumption is self-replicating.
Her experiments show the effects of fast food on the brain and the hormones the brain produces. More leptin and less galanin creates the desire for more fat. The fast food itself changes the brain.
The Fast Food Solution
Fast food has its purpose, and for most people, there is no way to foresee a future without it. Contrary to Eric Schlosser's Fast Food Nation, there are ways to live healthy without totally giving up on your Big Mac's and large fries.
Anything in moderation is OK. So when you're not eating fast foods think about the nutrients your body needs like the antioxidants in fruits, the vitamins and minerals in vegetables, the proteins in soy, chicken and fish.
Look at this list of foods high in antioxidants and this list of the top 10 Super Foods. Try to incorporate these into your life. Start small like switching to extra virgin olive oil and making sweet potatoes not white potatoes.
And start taking a daily antioxidant/vitamin supplement. Especially if you eat a lot of fast food. No matter what you do today, your body is going to need vitamins, minerals, enzymes and herbs to keep going.