Any instant food is just a convenience product rather than a holistic nutrition. Instant noodles or processed foods, such as ready meals, baked goods, and processed meats, can have adverse health effects. These convenience foods are high in sugar, salt, saturated fat, trans fats, processed ingredients, and calories and low in antioxidants, fiber, and many other nutrients. Regular intake of instant food can lead to weight gain, increase the risk of type 2 diabetes, and more.
Impact of Instant Food
Why Instant Food Became Popular?
This ultra-processed instant food targeted people in fast-paced, mobile societies who no longer have the time to cook and prepare food in the traditional setup. The marketing gimmicks behind this conceptual food are that it’s nutritious, tastes good, and is often inexpensive.
However, they usually contain ingredients that could be harmful if consumed in excess, such as saturated fats, added sugar, and salt. These foods contain less dietary fiber and fewer vitamins than whole foods.
You must Read how Instant Noodles in India Impacted Everyday Lives.
An excerpt from Maya Aravapalli: Food represents culture and tradition and has a massive impact on our day-to-day lives. It is an experience cherished by every individual. Because of its enormous impact on everyday life, changes in food started to impact the social culture. One such example is the emergence of instant noodles in India.
There was a time when the only food available was traditional Indian food that would sometimes take hours to cook; however, when Maggi Noodles was introduced, it changed the whole dynamic of cooking. All a person needed was hot water to share a tasty, easy-to-make meal. It was something that they could make themselves, and it was very time efficient. These noodles marked a revolutionary shift in India’s food culture. They were the go-to food whenever someone was hungry, and due to their low price, it was a very accessible product for the majority of India’s population. Read more.
10 Reasons Why You Should Not Eat Processed Food
Instant food is nutritionally deficient and loaded with negative calories (calories that do no good to our bodies). Eating this cosmetic food products impact health negatively in both the short- and long term.
- Refined carbohydrates and added sugar spikes blood sugar. Insulin promotes further hunger within a short time after the meal and makes you tired.
- Excess sodium in instant food is linked to fluid retention and causes high blood pressure.
- Saturated fat increases inflammation in the body.
- Nutrient-deficient food that robs you of essential vitamins and minerals required for optimum performance. Meager fiber can lead to gut health issues.
- Instant food is highly palatable, meaning the body breaks it down quickly in the mouth. It does not need much chewing and activates the reward centers in the brain rapidly. This combination makes you more addicted to these highly processed, highly stimulating foods and reduces your desire for whole, fresh foods.
Last but not least, consuming instant foods daily will impact your immune system, hamper your gut health, and lead to higher inflammation, lower control of infection, higher cancer rates, and a higher risk of allergic and auto-inflammatory disease.
This instant food makes you obese and can give you diabetes, cholesterol issues, kidney disease, strokes, and mental health issues.
Why We Must Go Back to Traditional Food?
It is true that convenience foods like instant noodles, poha, upma, and readymade meals have become more and more popular and are now a great choice for busy people. However, despite their convenience, we need to replace this instant food with traditional wholesome foods, as well as the natural methods to prepare them.
India has been rich in wisdom about food and the seasonal cycle. We need to go back to our ancient science of eating healthy food and as per the seasonal cycle to stay healthy.
Eating traditional food is not only good for our health, but it is also sustainable and pocket friendly. Traditional food items like Indian millets, seasonal fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds, and traditional recipes like homemade murabba, pickles, juices, mithais, fermented food, curd, etc. have more nutritional properties than instant oats and muesli.
There is no need for modern substitutes to live a healthy and long life. For instance, instead of the traditional cow milk consuming almond and soya milk will not add some extra good health. Pick up a bowl of traditional Pinjari, over dark chocolate. Eating a bowl of traditional Daliya over Quinoa is good enough to give you a bowl of health.
Preserve Good Health
To preserve good health, and to nurture the right food habits in the next generation, we need to adopt traditional basic meal preparation, cooking, and healthy eating habits.
If we want to stop our young generation from depending on fast food, we need to show them at home how to prepare healthy, balanced food. Consuming healthy meals cooked in the right way can support a person’s long-term health throughout their lifespan. This is the best gift you can give to your children and family.