Is instant noodles bad for your health? See the risks

Are instant noodles bad for your health? See the risks

Instant noodles are practical and inexpensive food and therefore end up being the option of many people. In general, the frequent consumption of instant noodles harms health because it is rich in sodium, fat and does not contain nutritional value.

On the other hand, if this type of food is consumed rarely and in moderation, it does not cause any illness or complication. Even so, the recommended thing is to avoid this food, replacing it with more natural, fresh pasta options with little salt. Since the dough is fried for a few seconds before being wrapped, about 20% of the instant noodles are fat. This frying step guarantees the consistency and shape of the pasta.

An 80g portion of instant noodles, for example, has about 60% of the daily portion of sodium that is recommended by the specialists, which is 5g per day.

What are the ingredients of instant noodles?

Noodles are made with wheat flour, powdered eggs, oil, salt and other ingredients used to make a normal dough. As it is an industrialized process, instant noodles are made on a large scale, being roasted and fried before being packaged. Noodles contain large amounts of sodium and fat.

Preservatives and additives to maintain the flavor are also used in their preparation to preserve the food, allowing a longer shelf life. In the production process, all proteins in these products are lost and only calories are kept. The noodle seasoning contains flavorings, dyes and flavor enhancers. It also has a large amount of salt. When consumed frequently, all of these ingredients are harmful to health.

Nutrition facts

An 80g packet of instant noodles contains about 360 calories, with most diets allowing you to eat 2000 calories a day. That same amount of ramen has 54g of carbohydrates , 8.5g of protein and 13g of fat. These values ​​increase if the powdered seasoning is placed on the dough, which varies according to the flavor of the condiment.

Is the instant noodle seasoning bad for your health?

Yes. The noodle spice is bad because it contains monosodium glutamate (MSG), which is an additive responsible for giving taste to the spice and noodles, which can be bad for your health.

MSG can cause various transient reactions such as headache , feeling sick and being sick. In the long term, this substance can help in the development of diseases such as high blood pressure and obesity.

Can I eat raw instant noodles?

The instant noodle dough is pre-baked and then fried at the factory. Therefore, the instant noodles we buy on the market do not come entirely raw. Even so, it is recommended that this dough be prepared (boiled or baked) before eating.

This is because the process carried out at the factory is not done to prepare the food, but to guarantee the consistency and shape of the noodle. In fact, if eaten very often, noodles themselves can be harmful to health regardless of how they are prepared or consumed.

What are the effects of eating noodles?

A survey of 11,000 people at Harvard University found that those who eat instant noodles frequently were more likely to develop diabetes and cardiovascular disease, as well as increased blood pressure. In addition to these complications, noodles also increase the levels of bad cholesterol, can cause kidney problems and interfere with weight gain.

Because of the high levels of sodium, osteoporosis and anemia are also related to the excessive and frequent consumption of instant noodles. Hydrogenated fat, used to make this type of pasta, favors vein clogging, which can lead to heart attacks and cardiovascular accidents (strokes). Instant noodles can still act specifically on certain organs such as the stomach and intestines:

In the stomach

Noodles end up subjecting the stomach to an intense and slow work of digestion. The digestive system is forced to work for hours to break this pasta. A research conducted at Massachusetts General Hospital in the United States showed that the stomach takes 2 hours longer to digest instant noodles, compared to any other type of pasta.

In this extra time, the body needs to produce more acid and insulin in order to break down this food, which in the end will have no nutritional increase.

In the intestine

People with bowel problems should also avoid this product. Noodles, because they have many preservatives and food colors, can irritate the colon of the intestine. As a result, diarrhea may appear or aggravation of inflammatory diseases in this organ.

Who has gastritis can eat?

The noodle seasonings further aggravate the inflammation because they irritate the stomach lining. The fat and dye present in this type of pasta also favor irritation. Therefore, those who have gastritis should avoid this type of food.

Even if gastritis is acute (transient) and does not worsen with the ingestion of instant noodles, the consumption of noodles can bring other damage to health. Care must be taken because gastritis is an inflammation of the stomach, which, if not treated properly, can cause wounds within this organ.

Can noodles cause cancer?

Noodles cannot cause cancer directly. But frequent consumption of this food can trigger other health problems like obesity, increased bad cholesterol (LDL), diabetes and anemia – which are risk factors for some types of cancer.

Although there is no proven diet that can prevent cancer, it is known that this disease starts and develops with the help of lifestyle factors, including poor diet, abundant in fats and sugars.

Thus, even though there is no direct relationship between instant noodles and cancer, this food should be avoided to prevent such diseases and have a healthier life.

Can pregnant women eat?

Pregnant women should avoid consuming this type of instant pasta because it is a food that contains a lot of sodium, fat, dyes and preservatives. During pregnancy, the baby needs nutrients to develop healthily. These nutrients are provided by the mother, who in turn, ingests them through a healthy and balanced diet.

Therefore, women who are pregnant should be careful about what they eat, giving preference to a diet rich in nutrients and vitamins, including fruits and vegetables every day.

Is noodles bad for babies?

Babies under 1 year should not eat ramen noodles . You should also avoid giving this type of pasta to older children. This recommendation is made because the instant noodles contain many preservatives and chemical additives placed for conservation.

Children and especially babies are sensitive to the toxic effects of these components. The sooner you start to ingest these substances, the greater the chances of developing an allergy to such elements.

The recommendation is that until the first six months of life, the baby feeds exclusively on breast milk, provided by the mother. From the age of 6 months, the baby can start to be fed with fruit and vegetable porridge whipped in a blender, which are healthier and offer the necessary nutrients for the baby’s development.

How to make noodles healthier?

To make it a healthier option, it is recommended that instant noodles be eaten in moderation and without the industrialized seasoning. Adding vegetables, legumes and lean meats also helps the meal to be more complete and with greater nutritional values.

Seasonings and sauces, when mixed with instant noodles, should be as natural as possible. Noodles can be very harmful to your health if they are eaten frequently. The ideal is to avoid this food and replace it with more natural options. For those who are fans of fast pasta, it is recommended to reduce the amount and prepare meals with other fresh foods such as meats, vegetables and greens.

Reference: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5449380/

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