Health & Lifestyle Benefits of Lower Junk Food Consumption Amid COVID-19
The coronavirus pandemic has made various impacts to nearly every nation across the world, dragging them to a virtual standstill. Most countries have imposed nationwide lockdown or implemented other safety guidelines to halt the spread of COVID-19. However, the situation is skyrocketing in the world as the coronavirus cases have crossed the 1 million mark globally. Apart from the casualties of life and other health issues, COVID-19 has made several influential changes to our lifestyle as well. These changes are indirectly affecting our physical & psychological well being.
Other than all these changes, the food industry, especially the fast-food industry is experiencing a massive breakdown in consumer preferences. Junk Food chains are seeing no choice than closure. The pandemic has somehow changed our eating habits as well. From lockdown to self-isolation & quarantine, restrictions imposed on people have turned their way to local, homegrown ingredients & food, with the minimal risk of eating. However, junk food craving is hitting even harder amidst the coronavirus outbreak. According to an Italian study, the coronavirus has impacted our health & lifestyle more positively than ever before.
According to a survey included 3500 people, aged between 12-86 years (76% females). The anticipation of weight was observed in 48.5% of the participants; 33% of smokers decided to step back and quit smoking or reduce the daily count; notably, a slight increased physical activity has been reported, mainly for bodyweight training in 38.3% of respondents; the rest participants group aged 18-30 years resulted in cleaving to a Mediterranean diet when compared to the young and the elderly population; 15% of 3500 respondents have shifted to farmers or organic, insisting on fresh fruits & vegetables, especially in metropolitan cities, where the junk food consumption was high in comparison to a balanced diet.
With limited or no options to eat out, people are re-adopting the trend of cooking at home and delighting in eating home-cooked food. In a survey of 1000 people, 78% of them refused to eat out while others insisted on safety measures due to COVID-19.
All the reports are pointing towards one direction — the fact shows that eating habits and food trends will never be the same even after COVID-19 abates. The meetings, food-dates, eating out, nothing will be the same as earlier. However, the quality of diet is crucial to the health state of people around the world. “With so many people falling ill from the coronavirus (COVID-19), unhealthy diets are contributing to pre-existing conditions that put them more at risk.” According to the 2017 global burden of disease report, metabolic risk accounted for the top 5 risk factors for deaths & disability. More than 2 billion people are overweight or obese, with over 70% of them in low- and middle-income countries.
And emerging studies have suggested that people with pre-existing, diet-related, and chronic diseases such as stress-eating, severe obesity, heart disease, and diabetes, are experiencing more severe consequences from COVID-19. Higher consumption of junk food is causing severe illness and more need for intensive healthcare such as ventilators and respirators. This could be the reason why most people are either dropping their ideas for eating out or shifting to home-made food. However, this little change in eating habits has impacted health & lifestyle massively. While fast-food chains are planning to improve access to healthy and nutrient-rich food, we have broken down a list highlighting 10 ways how lesser consumption of junk food has impacted our health & lifestyle. Scroll down to check out some positive impacts of avoiding junk food amid coronavirus.
How Lower Consumption of Junk Food is Impacting Our Health Amidst Coronavirus?
These are some surprising ways of how less consumption of junk food has impacted our lifestyle and health.
- Lower Risk of Heart Disease & Stroke
Most junk foods only increase cholesterol levels in our body that lead to serious heart diseases and strokes. High cholesterol and increased blood pressure (hypertension) are two of the major risk factors for heart disease & stroke. Fortunately, COVID-19 has restricted most of us to stay home and consume less junk food.
- Improved Breathing
Excessive calorie consumption can turn into excess pounds. At this time of coronavirus when people are eating more and moving less, consuming fast food, increasing calories without exercising can lead to obesity. It may cause shortness of breath and wheeze, even when you climb stairs or do a few physical activities. You would be feeling better now when junk food consumption has dropped to almost zero.
- Weight Loss
You may try to convince your mind by manipulating yourself in the name of a healthy diet, you may still overlook the amount of calorie intake, which can lead to unconditional weight gain. It may lead to some other chronic health issues that you probably never expected. Thanks to COVID-19 restrictions on restaurants, you can now challenge your friend on the track.
- Improved Blood Sugar Spikes
Junk foods as burgers, pizzas, and your favorite hotdog & sausages are filled with hollow carbohydrates, which can lead to frequent insulin spikes. Other than this, it may interrupt or alter your body’s natural insulin response.
- Lower Risk of Bloating and puffiness
Eating too much sodium can retain water in your body, leaving you feeling puffy, bloated, and swollen. Also, it may be linked to severe headaches.
- Improved Muscle Tone
Eating a balanced diet that is home-cooked and rich in whole food, lean protein, and no processed food can be beneficial in building strong muscles. You may observe some muscle cuts and sharp chains during coronavirus outbreak. However, junk food craving may hit hard.
- Better Sleep
Sugary food that is high in trans-fat not only leads to surprising weight gain but also causes disrupted sleep. Many junk foods and dairy products that people are avoiding in the time of COVID-19 come with added sugar. It causes high blood pressure and makes it difficult to have a sound sleep.
- Improved Mood
Lower consumption of processed food can lead to a better mood as well. The body doesn’t get the required nutrition when consuming junk food which leads to an imbalance. It impacts your mood when you consume nutrition-rich balanced food.
- Clear & Glowing Skin
Whatever we eat reflects on our skin. Well said! The key to naturally glowing skin lies in the nutrient-rich diet. Of course, fast food is not on the list. If you’ve cut down the consumption of junk food during coronavirus, you’ve probably experienced glowing & clear skin.
- Less Smoking
Our eating habits also affect smoking and other habits including alcohol consumption. Compared to never smokers, current smokers reported more frequent cravings for high-fat foods and fast-food fats. According to a report, junk food is directly linked to our smoking habit.
These are some major benefits that we all have experienced during coronavirus due to the lower consumption of junk food. However, these changes have affected the food industry devastatingly.