While we all love to drink our pizzas, chips or fries, a new study conducted in France now finds that we are facing a 14% higher risk of early death with every 10% increase in the amount of processed foods Eat.
The authors of the study write in JAMA Internal Medicine magazine that ultra-processed foods are manufactured industrially by many ingredients that usually include additives used for technological and / or cosmetic purposes, CNN reported.
They added: "Ultra-processed foods are mostly consumed in the form of snacks, desserts or ready-to-eat or heat dishes," and their consumption has "increased significantly over the past few decades."
This trend may lead to an increase in early mortality due to chronic illnesses, including cancer and cardiovascular disease, they say. According to the study, only in the United States 61% of the total adult diet comes from ultra-processed foods. In Canada, this figure is about 62%, while in the UK this figure is 63%.
To understand the relationship between ultra-processed foods and the risk of earlier-than-expected death, researchers found help from 44,551 adults from France for two years.
Their average age is 57 years, and nearly 73% of the participants are women. All provide 24-hour dietary documentation every six months, in addition to completing questionnaires on their health, physical activities and socio-demographic data.
Researchers calculated the total food intake and consumption of ultra-processed foods by each participant and found that it accounted for more than 14% of the weight of the total food consumed and about 29% of the total calories.
Ultra-processed food consumption is associated with younger age, lower incomes, lower educational level, living alone, higher BMI and lower physical activity.
602 participants died during the survey. After adjusting factors such as smoking, researchers calculate a 14% higher risk of early death for each 10% increase in the proportion of ultra-processed foods consumed.
The authors suggest that supplements, packaging (chemicals in food during storage) and processing itself, including high-temperature processing, may be factors that negatively affect health.
First Posted: February 13, 2019 12:06 IST