Dumb question right? Obviously because it tastes good. Well here’s what I’ve been thinking. It’s human nature to avoid things that harm us. It’s also in our nature to do things that give us pleasure. Unhealthy foods do both. Many people know fast food, junk food, soda etc are bad for them but yet they consume them regularly. Many of the harmful effects of unhealthy foods are delayed and they don’t manifest until later in life in the forms of chronic degenerative diseases. However, there are many immediate negative effects like heartburn, bloating, feeling sluggish and weight gain to name a few. Many people are willing to accept these outcomes because they really want to eat these foods. Then they compound the problem by taking medicine to relieve the effects. Others convince themselves that if they exercise enough that will offset the bad eating. Maybe you can burn some of the excess calories but all the crap is still in your body.
Laws, culture and social norms prevent us from doing other harmful things that some people may enjoy if they could. For example excessive speeding, underage drinking and taking something that doesn’t belong to us. Some of us do these things anyway if we think we won’t get caught or there won’t be any consequences. Some of us don’t do them because we fear getting caught. Others have a level of integrity that will prevent them from doing these things even if they know they would not get caught.
Unfortunately there are not enough laws to deter us from eating unhealthy foods so its our prerogative to eat what we want. Our western culture also makes you a weirdo if you eat healthy regularly. (Speaking from experience.)This post is not referring to those who do not know any better. (That’s a whole other story.) This is about people who know the consequences but do it anyway because the instant gratification of the taste is so irresistible. We usually can’t escape the negative effects of an extremely unhealthy diet. When people suffer from heart disease, type 2 diabetes, hypertension and obesity, not only is their quality of life drastically different but it is also a financial hardship on them and their loved ones and a very emotionally trying thing to cope with. So is it really worth it? Can we not lead happy lives without great tasting unhealthy food. There are so many delicious healthy foods to eat. Some may need to allow their taste buds to adjust to tasting the real flavors of food instead of artificial ones of the flavor of straight grease, salt and sugar. Or maybe there is some other way to find happiness outside of food. Are we filling voids in relationships, career, hobbies or spirituality with french fries and donuts?
One thought on “Why do we eat bad food just because it tastes good?”
I love the last line in the article about filling the voids in our lives with junk food. So true. It’s like we medicate our problems with bad food which makes our problems worse instead of eating better to feel better and be healthier. Great article!