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The main problem is that the sale of junk food in schools is contributing to unhealthy lifestyles of students. The availability of unhealthy foods such as junk foods is a major problem because it is contributing to obesity and develops ailments such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The presence of unhealthy foods in the school is a major problem because it tends to contradict the role of the teachers and the school administration in promoting healthy lifestyles. There is sufficient information about the dangers of unhealthy foods in schools as these foods are high in calories and very low in nutrients (Nicosia & Ashlesha 2012). When junk foods are available in schools, they tend to be a major problem. When it is used to replace the nutritious foods in the student’s diet, it can lead to poor health, poor nutrition, and even weight gain.
One reason why is it is a problem, is that unhealthy foods such as junk foods cause obesity. Obesity is normally caused by many things including a person’s environment, lifestyle, and habits (Nicosia & Ashlesha 2012). Schools tend to have a significant role in teaching students about the healthy food choices. There are some schools that have limited unhealthy foods in their cafeteria and vending machines so as to ensure that students lead a healthy life. However, some still have vending machines and cafeteria where students can buy junk foods. The junk food consumption among children tends to be linked to obesity. According to Dyerberg et al. (2007), the children who eat fast food are more likely to consume high levels of fat, calories, added sugars, and carbohydrates in just one junk food meal. When students consumer more fattening foods when eating the fast foods, they are more likely to eat unhealthy foods by other means. The high calories foods tend to be addictive and may cause the children who occasionally eat fast food to learn some awkward patterns of eating (Nicosia & Ashlesha 2012). Because of this, it places the children who regularly eat fast food at increased risk for obesity. A healthy lifestyle for students should include less consumption of fats, sugars, and carbohydrates and without the junk foods being sold in schools, it will help in the effort of ensuring a healthy lifestyle for students.
Unhealthy foods, such as junk food in the school are also a problem because it is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Eating the junk foods in school tend to increase the student’s intake of total fat, saturated fat, calories, sugar from soft drinks, and cholesterol (Dyerberg et al. 2007). Eating a lot of these components may alter the metabolic factor that tends to increase an individual’s risk for heart disease. The primary problem of unhealthy foods in schools is the fact that they tend to offer an imbalanced amount of macronutrients. The risk of the cardiovascular disease normally increases as the weight and the waist circumference increase. Eating a lot of salt tend to raise the blood pressure, which is also a risk factor for the cardiovascular disease (Nicosia & Ashlesha 2012). The consumption of the saturated fat which is present in fast food tends to increase the cholesterol level in the blood, which is also a risk factor for stroke and cardiovascular disease.
Another reason why unhealthy foods such as junk foods are the problem is that they are associated with diabetes. The junk foods include processed snack foods and the consumption of excess fats and sugar in these foods can result in weight gain where excess weight is associated with diabetes. A major risk factor for the development of Type 2 diabetes is overweight (Dyerberg et al. 2007). The junk foods are high in calories and have few minerals and vitamins. These foods usually contain large amounts of added sugars and may cause them t digest fast that will spike the levels of blood sugar and increase bad cholesterol levels. When the blood sugar level increase, it does alter the normal response of insulin and the frequent increase can contribute to insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.
Marmot et al. (2009) claim that junk food is a problem as it is associated with depression. The people who have diets that are high in junk foods are more likely of reporting depression. The ones having diets rich in vegetables, fruits, and fish are less likely of being depressed. Therefore, the problem with unhealthy foods in schools is that it puts students at risk of anxiety and depression (Marmot et al. 2009). The more unhealthy foods that a person consumes, the greater the risk of depression. Studies indicate that there are certain nutrients in food that tend to play a prevention role in depression. These nutrients include olive oil, omega three fatty acids, and vitamins B. Since the junk foods contain less of these nutrients, it puts the consumers at risk of developing depression. Therefore, it is essential that schools should take the responsibility of encouraging students to have healthy diets as it is linked to a lower risk of depression.
Akbaraly, Tasnime, Ferrie, Jane, Brunner, Eric, Kivimaki, Mika and Marmot, Michael, “Dietary pattern and depressive symptoms in middle age.” The British Journal of Psychiatry 195.5 (2009),
Datar, Ashlesha, and Nancy Nicosia. “Junk Food in Schools and Childhood Obesity.” Journal of policy analysis and management 31.2 (2012)
Stender, Steen, Astrup, Arne, and Dyerberg, Jorn, “Fast food: unfriendly and unhealthy” International Journal of Obesity 31, (2007)
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