Are Fast Food Restaurants Making the U.S. a Fatter Country?

As years have progressed, many fast-food franchises have developed and added new restaurants throughout the country. As this is very beneficial for those companies, it has caused many issues country, increasing the rate of obesity and heart diseases. So, is the issue of obesity our fault or fast-food franchises fault?

Why do Americans eat fast food if they know the effects of it? People eat from fast food restaurants because of their quick services, no dinner ideas, and no time. The idea of just going through a drive-thru and grabbing your food in less than 5 minutes is brilliant. Other reasons can be that some people in this generation don’t know how to cook or are inexpensive. Even though fast food is very tasty, it can cause many risks to our health. Most fast-food restaurants are not only processed and loaded with preservatives, but they are also packed with sodium and high-fat content.

Over 70% of American adults are either overweight or obese, 17% being children. Studies have shown that over the past four decades, consumption of fast food has also risen alarmingly. It is well known that eating out may lead to excess calorie intake and increases the risk of obesity because of large portion sizes and increased energy density of foods. In addition, obesity is the second most common cause of death in the united states due to the heart diseases that come with it.

“Eating a diet that’s high in saturated fats, such as those found in animal products, can lead to higher levels of blood cholesterol. Low-density lipoproteins, or LDLs, are known as bad cholesterol because they form tiny globules that float along in your bloodstream. If you have too many of these little fat globules, called triglycerides, they can clog your arteries. This can contribute to high blood pressure, which puts you at a greater risk of heart attack and stroke.” Stated Brynne Chandler from the SFGATE website.

Many fast-food restaurants lure in customers because they’re everywhere. These restaurants are usually located on busy streets, shopping centers, and gas stations. Fast food restaurants attract customers while shopping or traveling to a particular place, even when not hungry. They also use lots of advertising. Visual stimulation comes with posters in the window and offers located behind the counter. The fast-food companies present oversized images that induce hunger. When it comes to video advertising, they use special editing skills to make the food look better and usually have somebody saying how good the food is, making customers crave the food.

As many cases of obesity are caused by overeating junk from these restaurants, many of them have taken off things such as “supersize meal” and added healthier choices. The Supersize meal was the phrase that McDonald’s restaurants used to upsize their French fries and soft drinks to extra-large size. In the United States, McDonald’s introduced the supersized option in the summer of 1987. However, this didn’t last long when customers became more and more health-conscious and saw declining the Supersize option as one of those ways to start making small changes in their everyday lives.

Overall, as much as we love eating fast food, we should consider stopping eating fast food daily and take care of our health. Fast food restaurants have also stepped up their menu choices by adding healthier choices. It is okay to reward yourself here and there with it, but it’s also essential to take care of yourself.

 

Sources contributing to this story:

Sources : https://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/news/20081202/top-11-reasons-for-fast-foods-popularity#:~:text=%20Here%20are%20their%20top%20reasons%20for%20eating,like%20to%20prepare%20foods%20myself%3A%2044.3%25%20More%20 

How Fast Food Affects You Negatively (sfgate.com) 

https://foodrevolution.org/blog/food-and-health/fast-food-health-risks/ 

https://www.livin3.com/obesity-statistics#:~:text=An%20Overview%20of%20Obesity%20Statistics%20%282021%29%20According%20to,a%20healthy%20weight%20has%20spiraled%20out%20of%20control. 

http://www.discovery-zone.com/5-strategies-fast-food-restaurants-use-stimulate-sales/#:~:text=1%20Visual%20stimulation.%20Located%20on%20the%20High%20Streets%2C,largest%20portion%20presented%20as%20the%20most%20advantageous%20offer.