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Fast Food Diet - How It Affects Your Stomach?

Written and reviewed by
Dr. Atul Sharma 90% (163 ratings)
MD - Medicine, DM - Gastroenterology
Gastroenterologist, Gurgaon  •  11 years experience
Fast Food Diet - How It Affects Your Stomach?

The term fast food refers to those particular food items that can be quickly prepared and served instantly. From pizzas to chips, pastries, burgers, candy, soft drinks, fried and salted snacks, everything falls under fast food. There is no doubt that they appear irresistible and are equally delicious. But do you know that they can end up seriously affecting your stomach? Yes, for those who follow a diet, which is based on fast foods, it's time to know the effects of them on your digestive system.

  1. Discomfort to the Stomach and Kidney: As fast food contains various toxic elements, chemicals and high amount of sodium, these naturally increase the risks of developing bloating, stomach ulcers and sometimes even stomach cancer. As more salt is consumed by your body (through fast food), greater amount of water will be held by the sodium, which cannot only result in swelling or bloating of the abdomen but also may cause stomach discomfort.
  2. Fast Food Diet Increases ConstipationDietary fiber, which is found in fruits, vegetables, seeds, whole grains, and nuts, plays a crucial role in the maintaining a smooth digestive system. Not only do they keep the digestive tract functional, but also helpsin excreting the waste out of the body. But unfortunately, when your diet becomes filled with fast food, you lack the necessary fiber intake as fast food contains little or no dietary fiber. Less fiber means less absorption of water, resulting in constipation, which causes discomfort in the stomach as well.
  3. Peptic Ulcer May Be Next: Continuously having fast food often leads to stomach ulcers. Peptic ulcer disease or peptic ulcer is probably the most common form of ulcer that damages the gastrointestinal tract severely. For ages, intake of excessively spicy foods, alcohol and leading a stressful life have been considered to be the root cause of stomach ulcer. However, scientific studies have highlighted the consumption of fast foods too as a cause of ulcers.
  4. It Invites Liver Diseases: The liver is another victim of regular fast food intake. If you think that the stomach doesn't have to bear the side effects of liver disease due to fast food consumption, then you are wrong. Whether it's liver disease or any kind of liver damage, it may lead to a bloated abdomen, swelling of the veins or bleeding veins around the stomach, the esophagus and even pain in the stomach, interrupting the digestive process.

Those who consume fast food regularly or whose diet comprises of mostly fast food items should consult a medical professional or a gastroenterologist to be more specific, in case they experience pain and discomfort in the stomach. Dependence on a fast food diet for long often leads to life-threatening conditions, which can only be dealt with through medical attention. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

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