Most of us are aware that processed foods aren’t very good for us. These foods include things like packaged baked goods, sugary cereals, ready-to-eat meals packed full of additives, dehydrated soups, and fizzy and sugary drinks. If you’re trying to be conscious of your health and wellness, limiting the consumption of these types of foods is a great place to start. But has the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in an increase in the consumption of processed foods?
Are People Eating More Processed Foods?
The jury is still out on whether or not the consumption of processed foods has officially gone up during the pandemic – further study will be warranted as the pandemic ceases before we’re able to see facts and figures. But simple common sense tells us that, more than likely, consumption of this type of food has gone up. This is for two reasons:
One, processed foods tend to keep far longer than fresh food, and as many worry about food shortages and try to stockpile what they can, they’re buying more processed foods. Secondly, processed foods are often just easier than cooking a full meal at home. It’s far simpler to turn to packaged foods and snacks when you’re stuck at home, reliving the same day over and over again.
The Risks of Too Much Processed Foods
A study performed by researchers in France and Brazil recently found that a 10% increase in the proportion of ultra-processed foods in the diet was linked with significantly higher rates of cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease, and cerebrovascular disease. Essentially, as the amount of processed food in the diet goes up, the risk of health problems – and even death – increases dramatically. While eating the occasional baked good or bag of potato chips certainly won’t do you major harm, it’s not wise to make it a habit.
Eating Right at Home
Although we’re still learning more and more about the risks associated with processed foods, and it’s still unclear how the pandemic may be affecting the amount of processed food consumed, one thing is for sure: processed foods should be consumed in moderation. Make your own healthy meals at home with fresh ingredients, as often as you can – your family will thank you.
Make Health a Priority
Do you part to minimize processed foods in your home – buy fresh ingredients instead and prioritize your health with wholesome meals. Don’t let the pandemic ruin your health and wellness!