Be Cautious Of What You Eat
There was news clipping on Twitter recently that a woman poured cornflakes from the packet into the bowl of her child and went to get milk. Suddenly the child started to scream. Mother came running and saw big worms coming out of the bowl. She went to the shop and got another pack and three times successively the story got repeated. Of course she might have sent the packets to the company with a complaint. But why are we so much attracted to such type of foods?
Earlier idli, upma, dosa, paratha or roti and sabji were made at home and were eaten by all the family members. Now even these items are available readymade, beautifully packed and sold in malls and super markets. You just have to put them in hot water and they are ready to eat. Sometimes they are not consumed immediately but dumped in the freezer for later use. Leave aside the nutritional value, one may be eating it to invite health hazards.
I do not deny the fact that some people do cook at home but more and more people are opting for processed foods these days especially for breakfast. There are a number of food items like cereals, cornflakes, flattened rice and rice flakes which are processed in factories and are attractively packed in tins, cartons and polythene packs. During the process, these foods lose most of the fiber, vitamins and nutritional value.
- These processed foods are made in laboratories by adding chemicals, preservatives and additives to sustain longer shelf life (though some of these are harmless others cause nausea, asthma and headache).
- To enhance the taste and flavour, artificial colours (often chemical), ajinomoto (mono sodium glutamate) and salt are used (Artificial colours are not good for the immune system and ajinomoto weakens the nervous system, triggers palpitation, fatigue, eye damage, chronic depression and obesity).
- To make items palatable to children extra sugar and chocolate flavor are added. (extra sugar leads to obesity)
Globalisation has led to the rise of many multinational companies in the developing nations. By advertising through various channels their products now reach towns and villages. Earlier, these products had market only in metro cities.
In western countries, people are used to this type of food habits as their lifestyle and living conditions are different from ours.
But this globalisation has led Indians to adopt fast food to their lifestyle along with other junk food. In recent times, there had been a drastic increase in pizzas and burgers. They contain lot of fat and one is not sure of the freshness of chicken burger except for some reputed outlets.
The amount of calories one fast food meal contains is almost equal to the amount of calories one must consume in the entire day. While some of these calories come from protein most of them come from sugar (of the soda) and the fat (usually the burger and the fries) in the food.
Likewise, there are so many instant juice powders available in the market with a promise to contain vitamins C and D that give instant energy. In reality, these powders contain lot of sugar and just the flavour of the fruit. This extra sugar leads to obesity. Pediatricians always suggest home-cooked food, fresh fruit juice and fresh fruits to be given to children.
- Health experts warn that these foods create gastroin-testinal problems.
- There are shocking revelations that these fast foods decrease the chances of conceiving children and affect the different organs inside the body.
- They are the main cause for obesity and other chronic diseases that need lifelong treatment such as high blood pressure, diabetes, heart ailments, and high cholesterol.
By Nibhanapudi Suguna