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The myth revealed about ultra-processed foods

Ultra-processed foods are not as healthy as they would have us believe

In recent years, the food industry has offered a wide range of ultra-processed products that promise convenience, flavor and convenience. However, a recent study has raised doubts about the healthiness of these foods. Ultra-processed foods may not be as healthy as you might expect. In this article, we will explore the study's findings and discover why it is important to make informed food choices for our health.

What are ultra-processed foods?

Here are some examples of ultra-processed foods include industrially produced breads, cakes and pastries, packaged snacks, candy, commercially produced ice cream, breakfast cereals, flavored yogurts, margarine, carbonated drinks, instant soups, reconstituted meat products and ready meals.

The impact of ultra-processed foods on health

On March 30, 2023, a systematic review and meta-analysis entitled "Consumption of ultra-processed foods and cancer risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis" was published in the international journal Clinical Nutrition. The study, conducted by Irja Minde Isaksen and Simon Nitter Dankel (Clinical nutrition 2023 42: 919-928), analyzed existing scientific literature to evaluate the potential risks to human health associated with the consumption of ultra-processed foods.

The study revealed that ultra-processed foods are high in sugar, saturated fat, salt and food additives, while lacking in essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and fibre. Excess consumption of these foods is associated with an increased risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and other chronic conditions.

The hidden dietary truth

Many ultra-processed products are promoted as "health foods" thanks to deceptive marketing strategies that use terms such as "light", "no added sugar" or "low fat". However, the actual content of nourishing ingredients and the effect on health do not always live up to the promises.

The key to a healthy diet

For a balanced and healthy diet, it is important to favor fresh and minimally processed foods. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, fish, natural dairy products and legumes are healthier and more nutritious choices than ultra-processed foods. Making a grocery list based on fresh foods and preparing meals at home are habits that can contribute to better long-term health.

How to make informed choices?

When purchasing packaged foods, it is essential to read ingredient labels carefully. Avoiding foods that contain a long and incomprehensible list of additives, preservatives and artificial flavors is a good place to start. Opting for foods with few, natural and recognizable ingredients is a safer choice for our health.

Choose well today for the future

Despite promises of convenience and taste, ultra-processed foods may not be the best choice for our long-term health. The study highlighted the fact that these foods are often lacking in essential nutrients and rich in substances harmful to our body. Awareness of the contents of the foods we consume is essential for making informed food decisions.

Choosing fresh, minimally processed foods and cooking meals at home can help us eat in the healthiest way possible. Reading food labels carefully and avoiding those with excessive amounts of additives and unhealthy ingredients is an important step towards a balanced diet.

Additionally, it is important to educate ourselves and the people around us about the importance of proper nutrition. Sharing the right information that comes from reliable sources can help spread awareness about the risks associated with excessive consumption of ultra-processed foods.

We must remember that our health depends on the choices we make every day. Opting for fresh, nutrient-rich, naturally prepared foods can help us improve overall well-being and reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

In conclusion, research shows that ultra-processed foods may not be as healthy as they are often portrayed. It is essential to be aware of the food choices we make and favor fresh and minimally processed ingredients. Taking care of your health through proper nutrition is an investment that pays off in the long term.