We all know that getting fit takes a lot of time and effort. And if you're like most people, you're probably trying to cut corners wherever you can.
So it's tempting to grab a convenience meal on the go or pick up something pre-packaged at the grocery store.
But as it turns out, those mass-produced foods might not be as healthy - or as convenient - as you think.
In fact, they could be doing more harm than good.
Let’s see why.
What Are Processed Foods?
Processed foods are those that have been altered in some way before being sold to consumers. This can include adding preservatives or other chemicals, changing the texture or flavor, or simply packaging the food in a convenient form.
While processed foods have many advantages, such as longer shelf life and is easier to prepare, they have also come under scrutiny in recent years.
Some people believe that the health risks associated with processed foods outweigh any benefits.
Others argue that processed foods are no worse than any other store-bought/mass-produced food and that people should be able to find local sources of fresh food and cook it on their own.
Whatever your opinion, there's no denying that processed foods are a part of our lives, in one way or another.
Are Processed Foods Bad?
People have been processing food for centuries. In fact, early methods of processing food, such as fermentation and drying, were used to preserve food and make it more nutritious.
Today, processed foods are more convenient and often more affordable than fresh foods.
The thing, however, is that processing has drastically changed.
Nowadays, mass-produced foods also contain a ton of potentially harmful additives, as well as low-quality fats, and plenty of salt and sugar.
Not only that, but mass-produced animal products have drastically changed, as the demands increased, and farms are boosting the growth of animals in unnatural manners.
This ultimately affects the end product and its quality, to a big extent.
For instance, back in the early 20th century (around 90-100 years ago), farmers took nearly 4 months to grow a 2-3 lbs chicken.
Nowadays, it only takes roughly 50 days to grow a 6 lb chicken!
This leads to dry, flavorless meat that holds too much water and is of generally low quality.
Ultimately, though, whether or not processed foods are bad for you depends on your overall diet, lifestyle, and genetics.
That is to say that if you eat a balanced diet and get enough exercise, then occasional indulgence in processed foods is unlikely to harm your health.
However, if you eat a lot of processed foods, you may be at risk for some health problems.
With all of the above-said in mind, you are probably wondering - What is the solution to all of this?
And the answer is… Support local farms and small businesses!
Perhaps, one of the best decisions you can make for your nutrition, body, and mind, is to find a local farm, where the animals are grass-fed and grass-finished.
Besides that, it is also a good idea to find a local small business that grows fruits and vegetables organically, with no dangerous additives.
Not only that but unlike mass-produced foods that are often shipped long distances, locally sourced food is grown or produced nearby.
This cuts down on emissions from transportation and helps to support the local economy.
And as you already probably figured, locally sourced food is typically fresher and more nutritious than its supermarket counterpart.
So next time you think of food shopping, why not try something new? Seek out some locally sourced food and see for yourself just how good it can be.
Hey, listen up… We know that certain processed foods, like chips and ice cream, are good. And frankly, you don’t have to give them up.
All you have to do is keep the balance in favor of well-grown, well-raised foods!
Find some local, small businesses and you'll be doing your body (and the local economy) a favor.
Do YOU source your foods locally? Comment below!