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Ultra Processed Foods in Relation to BMI

Ultra Processed Foods in Relation to BMI
Student’s name:
Ultra Processed Foods in Relation to BMI
The rate of consumption of ultra-processed food in the United Kingdom has increased
resulting in adverse effects to the health of most people. The objective of this dissertation paper
is to explain the ultra-processed food in relation to the (BMI) in most people of the United
The ultra-processed foods and drinks represent those produced from the natural food but
have the combination of other different additives. Mostly these kinds of foods and drinks have
five common additives; sugars, fats, salts, anti-oxidant flavors, and preservatives. Examples of
such food include; carbonated drinks, energy drinks, pizzas, yogurts and all types of snacks.
Following their popularity in many developed countries for examples in the United Kingdom,
these kinds of food have resulted in many health problems and hazard to public health.
According to Cannon, et al (2016), the increased use of these, food is because they are
conveniently available, long lasting, and highly pleasant and they are ready to eat. Considering
their convinces to the users the research have shown that the UK families are the most affected
nations as they cover more than 50% of those who use these foods. This has resulted in an
increased rate of many people suffering from health problems like obesity, diabetes and other
conditions associated with this dietary in the United Kingdom.
Great findings showed that the free sugar found in the UPF foods were associated with
weight gain and obesity. In fact, the influence of free sugar to energy was at a higher quartile,
which was double compared to other non-UPF foods. From the study, intake of saturated fats in
UPF foods contributed to more than 10% of energy in all quartiles of UPF quartiles. According
to Ahima (2011), the saturated fats in the UPF foods resulted in increase of CVD. The study
further showed that these foods were found to higher content of free sugar, saturated fats and
other components that contributed to more energy dense compared to other non-UPF foods.
Also, the UPF had lower counts of proteins, fiber minerals and most vitamins which help in
regulation of weight gain in the body. Therefore, the study showed that UPT foods were
nutritionally inferior which was linked to overall deterioration of diet quality in most qualities.
Compared to the unprocessed foods, ultra-processed foods lack all the required nutrients
in the body. Those consuming the unprocessed food mix different varieties of unprocessed food
hence maintain a balanced diet but those consuming ultra-processed foods lack the advantage of
having a balanced diet (Monteiro et al, 2013). They end up having insufficient nutrients in the
body causing health problems in their body. In the case of the UK, many people do not
concentrate on agricultural activities rather concentrate on industrial activities which results in
the increase in ultra-processed food. Also, since most of the people are busy over the day they
end up consuming the ready-made foods in their homes leading to health complications in the
body. Notably, there are the micro and the macronutrients required to complete the nutrition
requirement in the body but should be in a specific percentage. In the case of unprocessed food,
the macro and the micronutrients are fully balanced compared to ultra-processed foods where an
imbalance in either micro or macronutrients is. According to Crino et al (2015), if the quantities
of these macronutrients and micronutrients are high or low during food intake can lead to health
From the research done on the body mass index averages, they have shown that those
households that consume the ultra-processed foods have a greater prevalence of weight gain
hence obesity (Moubarac & Monteiro 2014). Various issues have contributed to the continued
use of these dietary despite their dangers on people’s lives. For example in the United Kingdom
over the recent years, there have been consumption behavioral changes, which have led to
intense snaking. The dietary are said to be very profitable to the country and those doing
business in their companies. For that reason the owners of the companies ensure they convince
the population to buy the products by having numerous advertisements in the social media. Also,
considering their popularity more companies are engaging themselves in the production of these
dietary to meet the increased demand leading to large quantities of these products in the market.
Therefore, the popularity, strong market base and change in consumption behavior have largely
contributed to increased use of the dietary in the UK.
The composition of these ultra-processed foods is another factor to be discussed and the
way they lead to obesity among much UK population. According to Mendonça et al (2016), large
quantities of sugar in the body results in increased calories in the body. All of the soft drinks and
most snacks are sugary meaning that they have large quantities of sugar in their composition
which have contributed to increased health problems for most people. According to Cannon et al
(2018), argued that considering the four types of food groups; unprocessed food, processed
culinary components, processed foods and the ultra-processed food the last one have a greater
percentage of addictive components compared to other ingredients. For example, approximately
49.22% is the total fat intake in the body for ultra-processed food compared to 11.56% in the
unprocessed food. Unfortunately, from research, among the four forms of food in UK ultra-
processed food occupies a greater percentage of the intake among a big percentage of the
population. Therefore, the number of people who will continue suffering from health problems in
the UK due to ultra-processed food will continue to increase in the years to come.
Compared to other countries those countries associated with upper income level were the
most affected countries with effect with UPF foods. From the study, the research done to the
indigenous population and intake of UPF foods Brazil had 21.5%, USA had 57,9% and UK had
53.5% (Canella, et al.2014). From the figure it can be shown that since Brazil is classified as a
middle-class country the percentage was less compared to USA and UK which are termed as
upper-income countries. A further research showed that considering the household purchase of
UPF food in different countries showed that Canada occupied 54% Brazil 28% , and UK 63%.
These results showed that the upper-income countries continually consume these UPF foods that
have resulted to increased obesity in these countries. Notably, Brazil is a middle class country
meaning that compared to lower-income countries the upper-income countries share great
percentage to intake of UPF foods hence the increased cases of obesity compared unlike in the
developing countries.
The research showed the great intake of UPF in the United Kingdom and the harm they
cause in the body. The research gives various reasons why the intake of UPF has increased in the
UK. The dangers of some ingredients found in UPF and their composition are explained.
Therefore, the research shows the intake of UPF in the body and their impact on the BMI in
different Categories of people In the UK.
Ahima, R. S. (2011). Digging deeper into obesity. The Journal of clinical investigation, 121(6),
Batal, M., Johnson-Down, L., Moubarac, J. C., Ing, A., Fediuk, K., Sadik, T., ... & Willows, N.
(2017). Sociodemographic associations of the dietary proportion of ultra-processed foods
in First Nations peoples in the Canadian provinces of British Columbia, Manitoba,
Alberta and Ontario. International journal of food sciences and nutrition, 1-9.
Bielemann, R. M., Motta, J. V. S., Minten, G. C., Horta, B. L., & Gigante, D. P. (2015).
Consumption of ultra-processed foods and their impact on the diet of young
adults. Revista de saude publica, 49, 28.
Canella, D. S., Levy, R. B., Martins, A. P. B., Claro, R. M., Moubarac, J. C., Baraldi, L. G., ... &
Monteiro, C. A. (2014). Ultra-processed food products and obesity in Brazilian
households (20082009). PloS one, 9(3), e92752.
Canella, D. S., Levy, R. B., Martins, A. P. B., Claro, R. M., Moubarac, J. C., Baraldi, L. G., ... &
Monteiro, C. A. (2014). Ultra-processed food products and obesity in Brazilian
households (20082009). PloS one, 9(3), e92752.
Cannon, G., Levy, R., Moubarac, J. C., Jaime, P., Martins, A. P. & Parra, D. (2016). NOVA. The
star shines bright. World Nutrition, 7(1-3), 28-38.
Crino, M., Sacks, G., Vandevijvere, S., Swinburn, B., & Neal, B. (2015). The influence on
population weight gain and obesity of the macronutrient composition and energy density
of the food supply. Current obesity reports, 4(1), 1-10.
Mendonça, R. D. D., Pimenta, A. M., Gea, A., de la Fuente-Arrillaga, C., Martinez-Gonzalez, M.
A., Lopes, A. C. S., & Bes-Rastrollo, M. (2016). Ultraprocessed food consumption and
risk of overweight and obesity: the University of Navarra Follow-Up (SUN) cohort study,
2. The American journal of clinical nutrition, 104(5), 1433-1440.
Monteiro, C. A., Moubarac, J. C., Cannon, G., Ng, S. W., & Popkin, B. (2013). Ultraprocessed
products are becoming dominant in the global food system. Obesity reviews, 14, 21-28.
Moubarac, J. C., Parra, D. C., Cannon, G., & Monteiro, C. A. (2014). Food classification systems
based on food processing: significance and implications for policies and actions: a
systematic literature review and assessment. Current obesity reports, 3(2), 256-272.
Musselman, L. P., Fink, J. L., Narzinski, K., Ramachandran, P. V., Hathiramani, S. S., Cagan, R.
L., & Baranski, T. J. (2011). A high-sugar diet produces obesity and insulin resistance in
wild-type Drosophila. Disease models & mechanisms, dmm-007948.

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