Study Reveals People Who Eat Processed Food Can Gain This Much Weight Each Week

source: Business Insider

It can be really difficult to avoid eating processed foods. Not only are processed foods cheap, but they’ve also been made extremely convenient to buy, cook, or simply heat up. However, eating super processed foods on a regular basis is one of the main forces behind rising obesity rates. And a new study reveals exactly why this is.

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A study conducted by the National Institutes of Health developed a trial to highlight that people who eat a diet consisting of ultra-processed foods tend to overeat and subsequently gain weight, as compared to people who only eat whole or minimally processed foods. One group involved in the study was given a diet of only processed foods, while the other group was eating unprocessed, whole foods.

source: Business Insider

After two weeks, it was revealed that participants eating the ultra-processed diet ate an average of 508 more calories each day, and gained an average of two pounds. People on the unprocessed diet ended up losing two pounds after the two-week period had come to an end. “The difference in weight gain for one [group] and weight loss for the other during these two periods is phenomenal. We haven’t seen anything like this,” said Barry Popkin, a nutrition professor at the University of North Carolina.

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It’s important to note that the study participants involved in the processed foods group weren’t just eating fast food meals for two weeks straight. Their diet also consisted of foods like Honey Nut Cheerios, other breakfast cereals, white bread, jarred sauces, yoghurt with added fruit, and frozen sausages. It’s important to note that even if you think a food is healthy (or at the very least, not bad for you), there’s a pretty good chance it still falls under the processed food category.

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We already know the study participants who ate only processed foods gained an average of two pounds during the trial. If they maintained these eating habits for a whole year, that’s a potential 52-pound weight gain. Although America has made processed foods cheap, convenient, and the norm, eating them on a regular basis won’t do anything good for your body. Have you ever noticed that even after eating a full McDonald’s meal, you find yourself hungry again 30 minutes later? The sugar, salt, and fats in processed foods aren’t designed to satisfy you, which leaves you feeling hungry shortly afterwards. Aim for a diet filled with fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, and healthy fats instead. Your body will thank you – we promise!