How Fast Food Affects The Gut Microbiome
Who doesn’t like fast food, seriously? We are so busy that we grab cheap food to go. Marketing makes the food enticing for adults and children by referring to them as “the fast food diet. As a parent, I have found myself “rewarding” my kids with chicken nuggets and fries for a job well done or as a “treat”. Are we teaching our children that junk food is a reward? Unfortunately, all we’ve done is to compromise our health and well-being by eating fast food.
You probably have heard or even seen the movie Supersize Me. If you haven’t seen it it is a documentary done by a man named Morgan Spurlock who filmed the results of his fast-food only diet for 30 days. The results were even more shocking than he ever imagined. He ended up having to quit the experiment before the 30 days were up on the advisement of his doctor who told him he now had the liver function of an alcoholic.
There have been even more experiments, human and in vivo, that show just how harmful a fast-food diet is to our fundamental health, especially our gut microbiome. See how fast food impacts your gut microbiome which may affect certain aspects of your health.
How Fast Food Affects Your Body
Fast food has also been found to negatively affect our immune system. What we eat affects our gut microbiome which interacts with our immune cells within our gut. Our overindulgence of fast food consisting of mainly fat, salt, and sugar has been shown in some studies to cause inflammation and poor immune function.
Healthy Inflammation Response
Fast-food diets are generally high in fat and low in fiber, which can throw off your microbiome balance. This may reduce the growth of good bacteria that produce beneficial short-chain acids like butyrate, known to play a role in supporting a healthy inflammation response. For example, a small study put South Africans on a “Westernized” fast-food diet and Americans on a high fiber diet similar to South Africans for two weeks. The results showed that butyrate levels were cut in half for the South African group and for the American group the butyrate levels nearly doubled.
Studies have shown that high-fat diets alter the gut microbiome which has an effect on our metabolism. It seems that the microbiome may be linked to how energy is extracted from our food and how fat (energy) is stored. Healthy gut bacteria may increase our metabolism while unhealthy gut bacteria may help store fat.
The Bottom Line
“Consuming large amounts of junk food has metabolic consequences. In fact, avoiding junk food consumption will help you to maintain normal blood sugar levels and promote better caloric burn every day.
So the moral of the story is.. Eat a diet of natural whole foods to support your gut health. Also, to fill in the gaps where your daily diet might be lacking, take science-based, nutritional supplements like PhysIQ Prebiotic to support a healthy gut microbiome.* We all indulge in a fast food “treat” once in a while, but don’t make it a daily thing. Your body and your gut are very responsive to what you put into it.
The No Junk Food Challenge
Here is my 21-day no junk food challenge for you. This is going to be your modern-day implementation of “survival of the fittest”– if you’re looking to shed all those extra pounds you’ve been gaining from eating those delicious burgers, pizzas, and other goodies, this is exactly what you need. It’s about time the world gets to see the real you (which actually means you battling your desires).
Here’s what the challenge is about! Presenting the no junk food challenge Rules:
- No chocolate
- No chips
- No fast food
- No cakes
- No pastries
- No donuts
- No muffins
- No candy
- No white bread
- No Biscuits
- No cookies
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
* The views expressed in this article are those of the author
s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of LifeVantage or any other agency, organization, employer or company
** LifeVantage’s Marketing team may from time to time publish blog articles reporting information and research from third-party sources. The views and opinions expressed by these third-party sources as reported in LifeVantage blog articles are those of the authors and experts quoted therein and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of LifeVantage.