Health Tips from a Mother of Three

Three Dangerous Effects of a Western Diet

Although the "Western" diet is so named because it is common in the Western countries, it is fast gaining popularity in other regions, too. It is characterized by a high intake of high-fat foods, refined grains, red meat, and sugary desserts. These foods may be yummy and tasty, but they aren't good for your health. Here are three examples of what these foods may do to your health:

Destroying Good Bacteria

Every person has some "good" bacteria in his or her intestines and stomach. These bacteria are so named because they do not cause any harm. In fact, they keep you healthy by, among other things, keeping the disease-causing bacteria in check. There are also the "bad" bacteria, which cause diseases.

According to the University of Chicago, eating lots of concentrated milk fats (that are common in confectionaries and processed foods) interferes with the balance of the bacteria in your stomach. If this happens, the bad bacteria can take over, and you get sick. For example, the destruction of good bacteria can encourage the growth of the microbe Bilophila wadsworthia. This microbe has been associated with various intestinal inflammatory disorders.

Increased Progression of Prostate Cancer

As of 2012, nearly three million Americans were living with prostate cancer. It's true that the fatality rate of this form of cancer is not as high as other forms of cancer. Still, the disease can be indicative of other problems in the body; prostate cancer survivors are more likely to pass away from heart disease than from effects of the cancer. In particular, those who live on saturated fats, high-fat dairy products, and red meat do not fare well.

Even if you have been treated, your risk of remission increases if you stick to the Western diet. You can deal with the complications of prostate cancer by sticking to a high intake of fruits, vegetables, poultry products, and whole grains.

Increased Risk of Diabetes

Diabetes is another diet-linked disease that is on the rise. One of the reasons for its increase is the expanding popularity of the Western diet. According to WebMD, it doesn't take a significant intake of Western diet foods to increase your risk of the disease. For example, just eating two burger patties and a diet soda every day increases your risk of developing metabolic syndrome, which increases your risk of diabetes (among other diseases).

Though many people become interested in nutrition only when they wish to lose weight, this should never be the case. It's clear that a healthy diet is important for many reasons other than weight loss. Thus, you should take this information seriously. Why not consult a nutritionist to see other ways in which you can enhance your health via healthy eating? You may also wish to have a checkup from a primary care physician, such as one from the Choice Medical Group, to see if you are at risk for any of these issues.