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Diet and Nutrition 2023

What happens after eating fast food

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What happens after eating fast food
What happens after eating fast food

After eating fast food, which are foods rich in simple carbohydrates, s alt, fat and artificial preservatives, the body first goes through a state of ecstasy due to the effect of sugar on the brain, and then suffers more serious consequences such as hypertension, heart disease and obesity.

Fast foods are usually very caloric, and can be composed of foods such as sandwiches, hamburgers, pizzas, fries, milk shakes, nuggets and ice cream. In addition to the high calorie content that favors weight gain, see below what happens in the body up to 1 hour after consuming fast food.


What happens 1h after eating fast food

The following data are examples of what happens after eating a Big Mac fast food hamburger.

10 minutes later: Euphoria

Excess calories from food causes a sense of security in the brain, which was designed to think that the more calories you have to store, the more security you can give the body in possible times of crisis and food shortages. Thus, eating fast food initially has an effect of greater security and a sense of survival, but that will quickly pass.

20 minutes later: Blood sugar spike

Fast food buns are rich in fructose syrup, a type of sugar that quickly enters the bloodstream and raises blood glucose. This spike in blood sugar leads to the production of the neurotransmitter dopamine, responsible for giving a feeling of pleasure and well being. This effect on the body is similar to that of drugs, and is one of the factors responsible for fueling the frequent consumption of fast food.

30 minutes later: Pressure spike

All fast foods are normally very high in sodium, the component of s alt that is responsible for increasing blood pressure. About 30 minutes after eating a sandwich, excess sodium will be in the bloodstream and the kidneys will have to eliminate more water to reduce the excess.

However, this mandatory adjustment causes dehydration, which is often confused with hunger and a new desire to eat more fast food. If this cycle repeats itself constantly, the hypertension problem will certainly appear.


40 minutes later: Want to eat more

After about 40 minutes a new desire to eat appears, due to the lack of blood sugar control. Shortly after eating the sandwich, blood glucose rises and the body is forced to release hormones that lower blood sugar in order to control the sugar spike that occurred.

Whenever blood sugar drops, signals are triggered that indicate that the body is hungry, as its sugar levels need to be replenished with more food.

60 minutes: Slow Digestion

It usually takes the body 1 to 3 days to fully digest a meal. However, because it is high in fat, preservatives and trans fats, fast food usually takes more than 3 days to be fully digested, and the trans fat contained in it can take up to 50 days to process. In addition, this type of fat is most linked to heart problems, obesity, cancer and diabetes.

Other changes in the organism


In addition to the effects right after eating fast food, other changes can occur in the long term, such as:

  • Weight gain due to excess calories;
  • Fatigue due to excess carbohydrates;
  • Increase in cholesterol, as it contains trans fats;
  • Pimples on the face, as the increase in blood sugar favors the appearance of acne;
  • Swelling, due to fluid retention caused by excess s alt;
  • Increased risk of cancer, due to high content of trans fat and chemicals such as phthalate, which cause changes in cells;

Thus, it is clear that the frequent consumption of fast food causes many damages to he alth, and it is important to improve eating habits and have a he althy life routine, with balanced diet and physical activity.

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