“Junk food” refers to processed foods that have little nutritional value. Indeed, some may contain downright harmful ingredients.
Unfortunately, these foods are typically tasty, inexpensive and widely available.
Here are 15 of the unhealthiest junk foods in America.
1. Pop Tarts
Kellogg’s Pop Tarts have been around since the 1960s. These pastries have a sweet filling and are often glazed with an outer coating of frosting as well.
Pop Tarts can be a tempting breakfast choice when you’re short on time. You can store them at room temperature and quickly prepare them in a toaster.
But despite their convenience, Pop Tarts contain highly processed ingredients, including soybean oil and refined flour.
Plus, they are loaded with three types of sugar: refined white sugar, corn syrup and high fructose corn syrup.
All of these consist of large amounts of fructose, a simple sugar that has been linked to an increased risk of several diseases, including diabetes and heart disease (3).
The nutrition information on the Pop Tarts label refers to the amount in one pastry. However, each package contains two pastries, so this is a more realistic serving size.
Two Frosted Strawberry Pop Tarts contain 400 calories, 76 grams of carbs, less than 2 grams of fiber and a mere 4 grams of protein (4).
This high-sugar, low-protein junk food is a terrible choice to start off your day.
Summary: Pop Tarts are high in sugar and contain refined flour and unhealthy oils. They provide very little protein or fiber.
2. Arby’s Curly Fries
French fries are one of the most popular fast food items around.
In spite of their popularity, these deep-fried potatoes are very unhealthy.
What’s more, fries are extremely high in calories and fast-digesting carbs.
Arby’s Curly Fries are a perfect example. A large order contains 650 calories, 35 grams of fat and 77 grams of carbs, only 7 of which are fiber (9).
Summary: Arby’s Curly Fries are a deep-fried side dish that contains 650 calories, 77 grams of carbs and 35…