We have all known for a long time that fast food is a harmful thing and should not be abused.
Hamburgers and fries, as well as other fast food snacks, contribute to obesity and type 2 diabetes. But recent research by scientists at the Australian National University has shown that fast food is even more dangerous than we thought. Fast food causes dementia – transient dementia, and also accelerates the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.
FAST FOOD IS NOT ONLY McDONALDS
It must be borne in mind that fast food is not only unhealthy and fatty American food, but also frozen semi-finished products from retail chains: all these dumplings in bags, pancakes with different fillings, chips, frozen pizzas, sausages, baked goods with margarine … It is understandable why fast food is so popular: after all, it practically does not need to be cooked. I put it in the microwave, warmed it up – and that’s it! That is why it is called literally “fast food”. For those who are tortured by hours of work and traffic jams, this is the very thing!
However, semi-finished products are full of preservatives and sugar, but at the same time there are practically no vitamins and minerals necessary for normal digestion and brain function. Besides, fast food is very high in calories. Because of this, the obesity epidemic is gaining momentum in the world. Excess fat has been linked to 11 types of cancer and other diseases.
In the human body, even when we feel completely healthy, some kind of microinflammation occurs all the time. This is provided by evolution. Sometimes small inflammations are even necessary to stop infectious diseases and internal “breakdowns” at an early stage. But when there is too much inflammation, early aging occurs.
Fast food, firstly, due to the high content of fast carbohydrates, increases the overall level of microinflammation. Secondly, it causes microinflammation in the brain itself. This leads to a rapid loss of neurons, as proven by a study by Australian scientists. With the frequent use of instant food in a person, not only memory but also cognitive abilities deteriorate. Simply put, fast food makes us dull and think badly.
SPORT AND HOME FOOD WILL HELP DEMONTATION
The longer a person consumes fast food, the more sad the consequences for the brain and the body as a whole, the researchers from the Australian National University conclude. At a young age, you can still avoid the development of early dementia by giving up fast food. But the older a person is, the more dangerous for him is the frequent use of semi-finished products. And if you also don’t go in for sports, and prefer a minimum of physical activity, then dementia will not keep you waiting.
Physical activity, especially in the fresh air, improves cognitive ability – it is a proven fact. Schoolchildren and students who go in for sports usually show good results in their studies. Elderly people who do not sit on the couch in front of the TV, but continue to lead an active lifestyle, usually do not suffer from dementia until the very last days.
For a long time, scientists have linked the effect of moderate physical exertion and mental activity with a better supply of oxygen to the brain and normalization of blood circulation. But it turned out that this is not the only point. During muscle work, the brain begins to synthesize the protein BDNF, which contributes to the growth of new neural connections and the maintenance of the nervous system in excellent condition. And the hormone irisin, which is also produced during physical activity, helps to avoid microinflammation in the brain. Studies in mice have shown that without sufficient levels of irisin, the brain ages faster and Alzheimer’s disease begins. This was found out by researchers from Massachusetts Central Hospital.
Proper nutrition is also important for maintaining brain health. You need omega-3 fatty acids. It is not for nothing that nutritionists and nutritionists strongly recommend alternating Extra Virgin (cold pressed) oils in the diet more often: olive, rapeseed, flaxseed, pumpkin and others, as well as nuts and seeds. Be sure to eat fatty fish, at least herring and mackerel, as well as vegetables and fruits rich in bioflavonoids, antioxidants, vitamins and folic acid.
In short, if you want to stay smart and healthy for as long as possible, you should master the art of cooking, lean on natural foods and increase your physical activity.
Photo: ADOBE STOCK