What do you think of when you hear the term “processed foods”?
Does a picture of steamed carrots come to mind? Or do you think about foods that come in shiny, wrinkled bags?
If your answer is closer to the first, you are correct. If your answer is the last, you are also correct.
Processed foods are any food that humans have intentionally altered mechanically or chemically for the purpose of nutrition, taste, or shelf life.
This means that actions like,
- to cook
- peeling or cutting
… are all processes that make foods easier to digest, safe, long-lasting and enjoyable.
So how do we differentiate the processing that steamed carrots go through and that of bagged chips?
The term ultra-processed foods came to distinguish foods that have undergone relatively minor mechanical and physical changes from those that have been manufactured, may have been stripped of their natural nutritional qualities, and include a long list of chemical additives. Foods that have undergone only basic processes, such as cooking, cleaning and drying, are sometimes called minimally processed foods.
In this article, we provide information on what defines ultra-processed foods and summarize the research on the health effects of consuming them regularly.
What are ultra-processed foods?
Convenience foods and fast foods are common terms used to refer to ultra-processed foods. When people use these terms, they are generally referring to edible items that, when they make up a large part of an overall diet, can worsen health.
The scientific term for fast food or prepared foods is ultra-processed foods (UPF). The term refers to foods that have qualities that deteriorate health when they make up a large part of the diet.
Researchers Define UPF as follows:
Ultra-processed foods are combinations of ingredients, mostly for exclusive industrial uses, that result from a series of industrial (hence ‘ultra-processing’) processes.
In other words, ultra-processed foods contain ingredients that are usually only found on food ingredient labels but that you wouldn’t be able to buy on their own in supermarkets.
These ingredients (called additives or preservatives) are usually produced from a series of industrial processes.
Additives make foods shelf-stable for long periods of time; improving or improving taste, colour, appearance, or texture; or improve nutritional value.
In addition, the different forms of sugar, fats, added oils, and salt make these foods very tasty.
Making suitable foods
Potential potential warning: This section includes a detailed description of the handling of plant and animal parts.
group of researchers Developed to describe the general process that places ultra-processed foods under one umbrella term. We summarize this process as follows:
- Whole foods are broken down into sugars, oils, fats, proteins, starches, and fiber. Primary food products are usually high in starch and sugar, such as corn, wheat, soybeans, sugar cane or beets. Other common whole products are animal carrion parts.
- Whole foods and products go through a first process. Parts of the animals may be ground or mashed. Plant products may undergo hydrolysis, hydrogenation, or other chemical modifications.
- The resulting nutrients are combined with little, if any, whole foods, using techniques such as extrusion, molding, and pre-frying.
- Colors, thickeners, glazing agents, emulsifiers, carbonation agents, flavorings, flavor enhancers, and gelling agents are added to make food visually palatable or highly palatable and appetizing. In other words, it makes your mouth and brain say “yummy!”
- Chemicals and other ingredients are added to prevent bacteria and fungi from growing in foods so that they remain harmless (pathogen-free) for extended periods of time after processing.
- Food products are packaged in sophisticated synthetic materials that serve a dual purpose: safety and marketing.
Health effects of diets rich in ultra-processed foods (convenience foods)
From the perspective of long-term physiological health outcomes, there are many research-backed reasons why you might want to support your customers in reducing, but not necessarily eliminating, consumption of ultra-processed foods.
- The final processes that ultra-processed foods undergo make foods more palatable and pleasant to taste. Overeating foods may cause Addictive or compulsive eating behaviors.
- Ultra-processed foods very energy-dense It is high in added sugar, saturated fat and sodium and less in fiber. This may be of particular concern to people with metabolic disorders such as diabetes and digestive disorders, polycystic ovary syndrome, High blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, and others.
- Diets high in ultra-processed foods transcend the upper limits It has fats, saturated fats, free sugars, and sodium and does not meet fiber needs. A diet consisting mostly of these foods may lead to nutritional imbalance.
- Diets that are high in ultra-processed foods are more likely to be deficient in Protein, fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, niacin, thiamine and riboflavin, as well as zinc, iron, magnesium, calcium, phosphorous and potassium.
Reducing the proportion of a diet made up of ultra-processed foods and increasing the proportion of a diet made of meals made of processed cooking ingredients (such as dried herbs and ground spices) to processed foods can be significantly reduced. Improving the quality of the diet.
Should we limit the consumption of ultra-processed foods?
Food choice isn’t the only factor that influences what your customers eat.
Access to food, the economic constraints, and the complexities of the social experience of eating all have an effect eating behaviors.
disgrace It is an ineffective way to promote healthy behavior change. Remember that foods are not inherently “good” or “bad.” So, avoid insulting foods or eating habits when working with clients.
Foods are just foods, no matter how they are made or produced. Eating a bag of chips or a donut full of cream every now and then will generally not cause harm to people unless they suffer from a metabolic condition such as diabetes.
While eating too much of some nutrients, not getting enough of others, or eating certain types of foods regularly affects our health, the problem is a complexity of eating behaviors, not a problem with the food itself.
Adopting and maintaining eating behaviors is very complex. People with eating patterns high in ultra-processed foods are not doing so to intentionally harm themselves.
psychological factors like shock, social factors such as discrimination and underrepresentation, and environmental factors Like food deserts, food insecurity all influence how people make decisions about what they eat. These issues disproportionately affect marginalized communities more than other populations.
As coaches who specialize in supporting clients in achieving and maintaining healthy behavioral change, it is important to pay attention to the intricacies of nutrition and eating. Using techniques such as traumatology motivational interviews It can reveal realistic ways to help clients make choices that will improve their long-term physical and mental health.
When you talk to your customers, words matter. Using the term processed foods, when they really mean ultra-processed foods, can cause confusion.
It is important to note the potential effects of a diet that consists largely of processed foods. But it’s also important to be sensitive to the environmental, social, and cultural factors that influence your customers’ choices.
Remember that there are no “good” or “bad” foods. Food is just food. Ultra-processed foods, or prepared foods, may be the primary way your customers can feed themselves and their families due to lack of time or access. It’s important to be open to identifying barriers to accessing fresh, less processed food, and to build, along with your customer, realistic ways to meet their family’s needs.
- https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/public-health-nutrition/article/increasing-consumption-of-ultraprocessed-foods-and-likely-impact-on-human-health-evidence-from-brazil/ C36BB4F83B90629DA15CB0A3CBEBF6FA
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