Deadly Donuts

Donuts, mayonnaise, gin – worst martini ever? Or just the most unhealthy?

This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science.

Breakfast on the fly? Croissan-wich and coffee. For lunch? Pizza and a coke. Hey, it’s not the most nutritious diet, but what’s the worst that could happen?

Maira Bes-Rastrollo and her international team followed the eating habits of almost twenty thousand people for over a decade. They monitored consumption of ultra-processed foods like sausage, mayonnaise, muffins, and alcoholic drinks. We all know vegetables are good for you. But can a diet rich in junk food and Big Gulps really shorten your life?

According to the researchers, yes! They compared people who ate over four servings of junk food per day to those who ate the least. People who ate the most ultra-processed food were sixty-two percent more likely to die at an early age. And the more ultra-processed foods you eat, the more you’re at risk.

On the flip side, eating healthy, UN-processed food likely extends our lifespan. And every piece of broccoli you eat leaves less room for a Twinkie!

So bring on the kale smoothie! And just a splash of lite beer? No? Okay, fine.