Is biscuit a junk food? Let’s dig into the details. A regular tradition that almost every house follows is to start the day with tea/coffee and biscuits. As a no-fuss breakfast and also as a quick evening supper, a humble drink along with cookies and biscuits is practical. But have you ever wondered how many biscuits you eat?
Read along to explore the dark side of biscuits and their effect on the digestive and immune systems and simply why biscuits might be junk food.
1 Contains palm oil
Palm oil is 100 per cent fat, and when consumed on a daily basis, will increase certain risk factors for heart diseases. Palm oil reuse also restricts its ability for antioxidants and exposes you to many heart diseases. It is the cheapest and one of the unhealthiest oils to eat and most biscuits are made using it, so watch out.
2 Uses Refined Wheat flour
This is nothing but refined wheat flour, called maida, that is low in fibre. While whole wheat flour is now being added, maida or refined flour are still the main ingredients. It can also activate blood sugar spikes that can cause diabetes in the long term. Honestly, biscuits are tagged junk food mainly because of the presence of maida.
In fact, due to this process, refined wheat flour is actually devoid of anything useful. In addition, it takes a much longer period to digest refined wheat flour and it overworks the digestive system. When it comes to babies, their intestines are less developed and will undergo much more stress when attempting to digest maida. But, our Indian ads show the opposite.
3 Unconscious eating ( biscuits are not the only one to blame)
According to a study published in 2013 at Connecticut College, consuming biscuits causes similar pleasure in the brain as cocaine and morphine, and that’s why people never settle for one and develop an unconscious or overeating habit.
Yup, I know what you are thinking! Been there myself.
4 High in sodium content
Average sweet biscuits contain 0.4 g of salt per 25 g bag, according to the Consensus Action on Salt and Health (CASH), which, when eaten in excess amounts, can increase the risk of high blood pressure, stroke and heart failure. Excess consumption of sodium also results in water accumulation, leading to bloating, puffiness and weight gain.
Oops, who even guessed that there was salt in those sweet biscuits? But, my dear friend, truth is bitter and sometimes salty. 🙂
5 High on preservatives
Biscuits and cookies purchased from the supermarket contain Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA ) and Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT). According to studies, both are bad for human blood. In addition to this, biscuits often contain sodium benzoate that is associated with some forms of damage to DNA.
But, it is tough to blame the companies because after all, they are doing it for profit, so beware.
6 Undesirable Fats.
The measure of undesirable fats biscuits contain is one of the negative viewpoints associated with. There are businesses that label their biscuit products as “zero-fat”. But is it honest though?
The new FDA regulation notes that this claim is made only when the item contains the highest trans-fat of 0.5 grammes per serving and biscuits need to be sweet and there is unquestionably a substantial measure of sugar in most biscuit products
Here is a proportion of a popular brand and the amount of sugar it has:
Oreos = 14 g of sugar per portion of 34 gram (4 pieces)
The measure of sugar per serving is likely to have a major impact on glucose levels if the sugar used is plain old sucrose or a substitute such as high fructose maize syrup. Makers would probably use manufactured sweeteners to stick a “low-calorie” name on their products. This can avoid glucose and calorie problems, but in any case, such sugar substitutes will adversely affect various parts of your well-being.
7 High in simple carbohydrates
Biscuits, since they are high in simple carbohydrates, are not suitable for diabetics. These are the ideal sources of weight gain since they are high in calories. As a matter of fact, these are hidden triggers of weight gain, as you never know how many will pop into your mouth. In the form of biscuits, you should be surprised by the amounts of calories you eat.
Markets and advertisements now have newly disguised types like peas, multigrain and several others, but the main ingredients stay the same if you look closely. However, if you do stressful things like trekking or tournaments where you need resources, they are great for eating. This is also the same thing about cookies.
8 Digestive biscuits? What do you mean?
Often, the saltiest of all mass-produced biscuits are digestives. Three of them have as much sodium as a bundle of chips. Digestive biscuits contain refined flours, sugar, fats, and sodium, as described before.
These are combined to form a product with your tea that you can gulp down. Read the label again if a package promises that it is high in fibre, protein and vitamins and minerals.
Generally, a digestive biscuit consists of a minimum of 50 calories. These are not safe calories that speed up the loss of weight. Instead, these are calories that will obstruct your weight loss, and you won’t even know why!.
9 Too much Sugar
All biscuits are very high in sugar and, therefore, in calories as well. Processed foods such as biscuits and sodas have exorbitant levels of processed sugar added to them to enhance the taste. This is very dangerous for a variety of reasons. Secondly, mild addictions called sugar rushes can be caused, sometimes at the expense of a nutritious meal, making you and your loved ones crave biscuits.
Invert Sugar Syrup – A mixture of glucose and fructose is an inverted or inverted sugar syrup; it is obtained by dividing the disaccharide sucrose into these two components. Inverted sugar is nothing more than fructose to put it in plain terms. It is much sweeter than sugar and instantly consumed quickly by the body. For a finer texture and longer shelf life, it is added to biscuits. It is also cost-effective for producers and with little quantity, it offers more sweetness.
Inverted sugar is considered more dangerous than sugar because our body further breaks down glucose into fructose in sugar, but you ingest fructose in this manner, allowing it go straight into the blood vessels without giving the body the opportunity to transform it. It also has adverse consequences and later causes individuals vulnerable to diabetes. Sugar is the devil.
10. Fats that are hydrogenated
In very high amounts, vegetable fats or hydrogenated fats are added and are baked at very high temperatures. So they are fooling you next time you pick up a pack that says trans free. Biscuits can’t be low-fat or free of fat.
Researchers have cautioned that fats found in cookies, cakes and processed foods may have a detrimental effect on memory.
The biscuit has long been a part of life, whether it’s the Parle G Biscuits we’ve all grown up with the bourbons we lick just the cream off. Those beautiful advertisements can really play with our brains.
Trans fats are a certain form of fat used to preserve shape, flavour and consistency in processed foods. However, not only does it lack nutrients altogether, but it can also cause severe complications, as it causes an imbalance between the body’s good and bad cholesterol levels. It is known to contribute to vision issues, nervous disorders, allergic conditions, diabetes and obesity in infants.
Many brands can note that their product has no trans fat, but this is sometimes deceptive as there is almost always a small quantity. And for your kids, this can be troublesome.
11. Lack of Nourishment
Simply put, there’s just nothing of nutritional value in biscuits. Basically, they include processed wheat flour, unhealthy fat, potassium sodium and a variety of toxic synthetic substances. It is simply a dead snake looking alive, I would suggest you take fruits instead.
12. Hard time at the toilet.
There is absolutely no dietary fibre or roughage in the biscuits. Roughage is necessary for the effective passage of stools from the body. This could cause your child to have constipation, which can have severe complications such as anal fissures, vomiting, faecal blood (in extreme cases of high consumption only) if he plans to have biscuits to fill the major portion of his appetite.
13. The Null Fillers
Biscuits provide your baby with nothing of worthwhile still satisfying their hunger. (This also refers to other foods, such as cookies, chocolates, cakes, soft drinks, etc. )
These goods are known as empty calorie foods because they provide energy, but nothing else, for the basic functioning of the body. You can survive off biscuits alone technically, but it would be short and unhealthy, this again becomes evident if consumed in large amounts(overeating).
14. White Sugar
In a very refined form, most biscuits contain 20-30 per cent white sugar and this quantity can differ across brands. White sugar is not the healthiest thing you can offer, particularly for kids. In the long run, cavities, increased tiredness, sugar addiction, and obesity are common health problems. What kind of sugar is used? Another significant point to check?
There are various types of sugar used for baking, such as liquid glucose, inverted sugar syrup, corn syrup, etc. High-fructose corn syrup spikes the insulin in the body super easily, rendering it harmful to diabetics.
When ingested in pharmacological doses, high-fructose corn syrup in any form induces obesity and cardiovascular diseases. Even a few drops of this is enough for the manufacturers of these factory biscuits to sweeten the commodity, so it is economically advantageous for the companies.
Read the label next time and choose products that use a more natural source of sugar for sweetness, such as jaggery cookies, date cookies, cane sugar, brown or raw sugar, honey in these baked snacks.
Vegetable oils have been used to make cookies for decades and are the cheapest. At very high temperatures, the vegetable oils used in these factory-made biscuits are hydrogenated. In a liquid state, this process turns the oil into a solid-state, like butter. It is often referred to as data, or most locations are vanaspati. But it produces a lot of trans-fat in the process, which is banned in most countries.
As in hydrogenated vegetable oils, artificially derived trans fats (derived when hydrogen gas reacts with oil) are highly detrimental to health and are a factor in causing heart disease and cancer. So it is best to select a snack baked in cold-pressed oils, where the main ingredient is often plain old animal fat butter. It could be an expensive option, but they have no trans-fats.
16. Artificial Additives
Additives are food-added substances to retain flavour or boost its taste, appearance, or other characteristics. The names of some commonly allowed preservatives added to almost all biscuits are potassium nitrate, so-ascorbic acid, potassium nitrite, and sodium ascorbate. It is even more damaging for kids, as the base of a developing body must be clean & free of toxins.
Emulsifiers are compounds which increase emulsion stability, such as allowing water and oils to mix in a stable solution. They improve the shelf life and also the biscuit’s crunchiness. However, these emulsifiers are likely to be cancer-causing additives, so it is safer to avoid them.
MSG sometimes referred to as sodium glutamate, is the sodium salt of glutamic acid. MSG is a taste enhancer. Foods sitting in the store for more than 5-6 months will still taste great when you eat them, and that’s exactly what MSG assists in. It makes food taste good even though it is actually stale. It also makes you yearn for more of the same stuff. It spikes blood sugar quickly in people who are vulnerable to it. Although it is present in small quantities, in the long run, it tends to contain toxins.
Several companies substitute Monopotassium Glutamate (MKG) instead of sodium glutamate and say ‘No MSG’. MKG is toxic to our bodies in a similar way. So when reading labels before buying snacks ready to eat, please be very careful.
18. Dairy powder
Powdered milk or dried milk is a milk product that is processed by evaporating milk into dryness. The addition of milk in a dry form improves flavour and does not shorten shelf life. This makes it a perfect ingredient to add to baked goods.
Powdered milk, however, contains oxidised cholesterol, which is not a type of cholesterol that our body needs. Some businesses often say that both low-fat and fat-free milk is applied to powdered milk to give it more body. And they say that you can’t tell whether your milk has dry milk added or not because the packages are not allowed to list powdered milk on the list of ingredients.
Nevertheless, since it causes severe illnesses such as Alzheimer’s disease along with obesity in the long term, it is important to know the adverse consequences of this.
19. Raising Agents
Raising agents are additives (liquid or powder) to ensure that the substance not only improves but also has a consistent texture. Baking powder or baking soda are popular raising agents. Such raising agents provide the food with crispness and increase the volume of the food by releasing gases as well.
In the body, these agents produce gas or colic. Some of these baking powders are combined with aluminium sulphate in order to release CO2 only after they have been cooked. We know that aluminium is a heavy metal and our body does not need it. A small accumulation of such toxins frequently in children’s developing bodies will later cause adverse health conditions.
20. Colours & Artificial Flavors
Flavours are additives that give a specific flavour, colour or smell to food and maybe extracted or artificially produced from natural ingredients. These substances, on their own, have no flavour. But they become taste enhancers when combined with other ingredients. In biscuits, these artificial flavours are applied to improve their taste and maximise their shelf life.
Do not be fooled by biscuits such as “fruity flavour,” ” tasty pineapple flavour,” ” cute strawberry flavour,” “sour plum flavour,” and the like. Technology is so complex that it is possible to use the cheaper substitute, synthetic chemicals, to imitate this flavouring to be like the real thing. Most of the time, none of these fruits mentioned are included in the ingredients at all.
21. Conditioner & Improvers for Dough
The Dough Conditioner provides an improved yeast growth atmosphere that helps to make the bread and biscuits more consistent and lighter. It is primarily used to reinforce and strengthen the texture of the dough and also increase its quantity. They make the biscuits extra-crisp as well.
It works well for making biscuits, but we just produce more toxins & chemicals in our bodies by eating on a regular basis.
We hope that we could raise awareness about what ingredients are used in our favourite snacks and why biscuits may be referred to as junk food, so please share this article.
We can’t stop eating them, we can surely read labels and box ingredients to make a better choice every time. After all, biscuits are simply made for leisure eating. Is biscuit good for health is a question in vain there.
That being said like all other products out there, too much of anything could make anything a Junk food. So “is biscuit a junk food?” is answered, right?