Ultra-processed foods cause more than 30 negative health effects

Over 30 negative health effects are a scientific count supported by consistent data after longer exposure to ultra-processed foods. An alarming fact that has been warned about for many years to try to reverse its consumption.

Healthy eating recommendations are aimed at reducing consumption, but in reality What are ultra-processed foods and why should we avoid them?

Ultra-processed foods are industrial products based on substances obtained or extracted from food products, with a mixture of additives, which impart color, flavor and texture to achieve a food-like taste. From a nutritional perspective, these are foods high in sugar, total fat, saturated fat and sodium. They are also lower in fiber, vitamins and minerals compared to unprocessed or minimally processed foods and meals.

Consistent evidence shows that increased consumption of ultra-processed foods is associated with an increased risk of 32 adverse health effects: including cancer, serious heart and lung disease, mental health problems and premature death.

Results published BMJshow that diets high in ultra-processed foods can be harmful to many body systems and highlight the need for urgent action to reduce dietary exposure to these foods and better understand the mechanisms that link them to poor health.

Ultra-processed foodsincluding packaged baked goods and snacks, sodas, sugary cereals and ready-to-eat foods.Omer or heat, they are subjected to many industrial processes and often contain dyes, emulsifiers, flavors and other additives. These foods also tend to be high in sugar, fat and/or salt, but low in vitamins and fiber.

Many previous studies and meta-analyses have linked highly processed foods to poor health, but no comprehensive review has yet provided a comprehensive assessment of the evidence in this area.

To fill this gap, the researchers conducted a review (summarizing the evidence) of 45 different pooled meta-analyses 14 review articles which have linked ultra-processed foods to adverse health effects.

All review articles were published within the last three years and attracted nearly 10 million contributors. None of them were funded by processed food companies.

Diet history

Estimates of exposure to ultra-processed foods have been obtained combination of food frequency questionnaires24-hour dietary recall and dietary history were measured as higher versus lower intake, additional servings per day, or 10% increase.

Researchers rated the evidence as strong, highly suggestive, suggestive, weak or no evidence. They also rated the quality of the evidence as high, moderate, low or very low.

Overall, the results show that greater exposure to ultra-processed foods is consistently associated with an increased risk of 32 adverse health outcomes.Strong evidence showed that higher consumption of ultra-processed foods was associated with approximately a 50% higher risk of cardiovascular disease-related death, a 48-53% higher risk of anxiety and common mental disorders, and a 12% higher risk of cardiovascular diseases. 2 diabetes.

The results also led us to note that higher consumption of ultra-processed foods was associated with a 21% increased risk of death from any cause, and a 40-66% increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes. sleep and a 22% higher risk of depression.

Evidence linking exposure to ultra-processed foods to asthma, gastrointestinal health, certain cancers and risk factors. cardiometabolic risk, such as high levels of blood fats and low levels good cholesterolremains limited.

The researchers acknowledge that overall surveys can only provide broad summaries and cannot rule out the possibility that their results may have been influenced by other unmeasured factors and differences in the assessment of ultra-processed food intake.

However, the use of rigorous, pre-specified, systematic methods to assess the validity and quality of the analysis assumes that the results stand up to scrutiny.

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