Processed foods have become a huge part of our lives, regardless of if it is in the form of microwavable meals for all the times that we come home late and are too sleepy to cook, or the cereal bars and takeaways that we buy on our way home.
But how do these processed foods affect our health?
And what about the processed foods that have been created that contain added vitamins and minerals like breakfast cereals?
Do they actually work or should we be choosing fresh foods over processed?
A couple of years ago processed foods were all considered bad.
They were high in salt and saturated fats and many people reasoned that ready-meals and high processed diets lead to obesity and ill health in children and adults alike.
Yet, with many adults being time poor and not being able to make an entire meal from scratch between getting home from a long day at work and dinner time food manufacturers have picked up on the fact that in order to succeed in todays economy they need to make their meals a little healthier.
From the “innocent” meals to low calorie options, to options with added vitamins and minerals there have been lots of developments in the food industry to help people choose healthier options.
However, just because something has extra vitamin C in does not automatically make it the healthier option, and if you really want the optimal amount of nutritional value it is always going to be better coming from fresh foods rather than processed.
This is because even though vitamins and minerals are added, or calories are reduced in processed foods, the things that they shout about on the packaging do not take into consideration the other ingredients.
For example, the meal may be low in calories, but how much nutritional value does it have? If it has added vitamins and minerals inside it, what is the sugar content like?
Processed foods aren’t evil. They are helpful and come in handy when you’re in a rush or simply are too sleepy to make a meal.
However, reading the ingredients and knowing exactly what you are buying is important, especially if you are something for it’s nutritional value.