Why’s there so much sugar, salt and fat in everything?

If we have less than healthy eating habits, it’s because it is so easy to have them.

Dr. Laura Falvey
May 23, 2023

Today we want to talk about one of the reasons we eat like we do. If we have less than healthy eating habits, it’s because it is so easy to have them. Supermarkets are lined with foods we should ideally avoid. However, our modern diets are a relatively new invention that came about after World War II.

Prepackaged foods started to replace home cooked meals as more and more homemakers entered the workforce. With the introduction of the television, people wanted to come home from work and relax in front of a show — not spend hours in the kitchen. 

Food manufacturers jumped on this trend and started to make time-saving foods and products that we were all willing to spend a little extra for if it meant giving us more free-time. Over time, new brands emerged, whose advertising illustrated the ease of ready meals. Before long, factory processed foods and meals became mainstream and they continue to dominate the supermarket food aisles today.

And what’s their hidden secret sauce?

Sugar, salt and fat. These three ingredients that give the food industry immense power.

We humans adore the taste of sugar, which is why processed foods contain lots of it. It is added to foods where it shouldn’t belong. Take pasta sauces as an example. In most jars of tomato based pasta sauce, sugar is usually the main ingredient after tomatoes! 

While Salt contains no calories it does contain sodium, which is essential for the human body to function. However, when the body gets too much sodium, it increases our blood pressure. The main reason food companies add salt to their meals is to improve taste. While salt brings out the flavour in food, it also hides unpleasant tastes that remain as a result of the manufacturing process. 

Fat helps to give processed foods a longer shelf life. Therefore, processed foods tend to be crammed with fat. Soups and pies are good examples of this. Processed cheese is also very fatty. Therefore,  eating processed foods that contain high-levels of fat means we are likely to exceed our recommended daily intake of fat.

What is the solution?

You guessed it, home cooked meals. By cooking fresh ingredients, you are in control of what goes into your food. There are loads of quick, easy and delicious recipes that you make to dramatically improve your health.

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