Almost 80 per cent of meals consumed by youngsters are processed food or junk ordered online. They find it comfortable as food delivery apps are very quick. Representational image/Pixabay
HYDERABAD: Eating junk food takes a toll on one’s mental health, say nutritionists. Confirming that cases of mental disorders have gone up, especially among teenagers and adults who started their career recently or are extremely busy and cannot keep a track of their meals and time, nutritionists and psychologists said people got used to ordering food from outside in the city during Covid-19 period.
Hormonal imbalance is one such issue which is rapidly increasing among teenagers and children aged between 10 and 15 years. These children put on weight up to 10 kilograms at a go in the last few years because of unhealthy eating habits, according to experts. "Junk food is part of their diet. Almost 80 per cent of meals consumed by youngsters are processed food or junk ordered online. They find it comfortable as food delivery apps are very quick. They started eating food in large portions and are overeating just for the sake of finishing the food and not wasting it," said nutritionist Sujata Stephen.
She added that studies had shown that junk food had more sweet, salt, sugar and fat which if consumed regularly directly impacted the mental health of human beings. "Mental ability drops, problem solving ability shrinks, frequent mood swings are bound to take place and people slowly are also slipping into depression. People also feel very lethargic in such cases," she added.
Micronutrients required to keep a person healthy are missed in junk food and are available only in healthy home cooked food. Other than stress and depression, cardiovascular diseases are also bound to emerge. "Eating junk food gives a feeling of happiness and euphoria. But all should know that this ‘feel good’ does not last longer. To experience it again and again, people are addicted to junk food. Binge eating disorders too are on the rise," said Dr Devashish Palkar, a psychiatrist. He added that children as young as 10 years of age were extremely obese because of such eating disorders.