By Molly Mann, DivineCaroline
For some time now, the media has kept us aware of the link between fast-food consumption and obesity, but Morgan Spurlock’s 2004 film Super Size Me brought to our attention the other, overlooked side effects of biting into a Big Mac. Spurlock ate only food from McDonald’s for thirty days and not only experienced fat accumulation but also lost muscle mass, began to feel depressed and lethargic, and suffered from headaches. His nutritionist even pronounced him “addicted” to fast food. It seems a burger is more than just lunch these days.
1. Hamburger Hangover
One of Spurlock’s symptoms during the filming of Super Size Me was a recurrent, intense headache. It’s true that processed foods can trigger migraines. Processed foods, including those on the menus of fast-food joints, contain ingredients like nitrate or nitrite, monosodium glutamate (MSG), and artificial sweeteners that are all “head-bangers.”
Nitrates and nitrites are preservatives that increase blood flow, leading to head pressure and pain. Food processors add it to their meat products to protect against Clostridium botulinum, the bacteria that causes food poisoning, and because it gives the meat that fresh, pink color and “cured” taste. Makers of fast food also add MSG to enhance flavor and to hide the metallic tastes incurred while processing. These additives may make your dish more palatable, but they leave you with pretty nasty hangovers.