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The crisps contain a lot of s alt, trans fat and carcinogenic acrylamide. They are unhe althy and high in calories. We all know it, but it doesn't stop us from crunching. Because who can resist chips? It turns out that the favorite snack of many Poles is not only bad for he alth, but can be addictive.

The fact thatchips are unhe althyknows everyone, even children. They have a bad effect on body weight and the circulatory system. Why is this happening? What in the composition of the chips makes them a great threat to our body? And why are we not actually able to eat a few chips, and we only end up when crumbs remain at the bottom of the package?

What's in the chips?

It would seem like just a good potato. So let's look at the composition of exemplary green onion flavor chips: "potatoes, palm vegetable oil, sunflower vegetable oil, green onion flavoring preparation [onion powder, whey powder (from milk), lactose powder (from milk), sugar , powdered milk, flavor enhancers (monosodium glutamate, disodium 5'-ribonucleotides), aromas, powdered cheese (from milk), acidity regulators (citric acid, malic acid), colors (annatto, paprika extract), powdered garlic , soybean oil, m altodextrin], s alt ".


The basic ingredient of crisps is, of course, potatoes. The potato itself is not dangerous. An average lunch portion of boiled potatoes (150 g) provides about 130 kcal, a lot of potassium and half the daily requirement for vitamin C. Often, however, the production of chips does not use sliced ​​potatoes, but the pulp or potato flakes are formed into the right shape , for example, so that they fit perfectly into the tube. The more processing, the less nutritional value remains in the final product.

Oil - a source of unhe althy trans fats

Oil is already in second place in the composition, which means that there is a lot of it in the product. The chips usually contain over 30% oil. To a large extent, it is the fat that influences the huge calorific value of the chips (500-550 kcal / 100 g).

100 g of crisps is as much as 500-550 kcal.

A package that is not too large provides the same amount of calories as a decent two-course dinner. And not long after eating it, we are hungry again. Uncontrolledeating crisps makes you gain weight very easily. The fats used to fry the crisps are cheap hydrogenated vegetable oils such as palm oil. At room temperature, they have a solid consistency, so the chips are crunchy, they last longer, and the oil does not drain off. Due to the hardening (hydrogenation) process, very harmful trans fats are produced in the oils. Their consumption causes the formation of atherosclerotic plaque and increases the risk of atherosclerosis, heart attack and other cardiovascular diseases. Trans fats raise the level of total cholesterol, the "bad" LDL cholesterol, and lower the levels of the "good" HDL cholesterol in the blood. They are responsible for maintaining chronic inflammatory processes in the body and lowering immunity.

S alt and spices

The daily recommended amount of s alt in the diet is 5 g. This applies to both s alt contained in food products and added to prepared meals. The average Polish diet provides 15 g of s alt. That's a lot, the more that we are often not aware of how much sodium is in food and we additionally carelessly add s alt. The amount of s alt in the chips is alarming. 100 g of this snack provides about 2 grams of s alt, which is as much as 40% of the daily requirement. Too much sodium chloride in the diet causes fluid retention in the body, causing it to feel swollen and heavy, and can lead to kidney problems and high blood pressure. Importantly, problems with hypertension do not only affect people of mature age. Children are being increasingly affected by them. An indispensable component of the seasoning mixture in the chips is monosodium glutamate, i.e. a flavor enhancer. It is not fully known what amounts may have a negative effect on the human body, but this ingredient is a very common additive and you must be careful not to overdo it with its consumption. As for spices, they are rarely all-natural ingredients. The more sophisticated the taste, the longer and "more interesting" the composition of the flavoring preparation. While s alted crisps do not contain suspicious mixtures, obtaining the taste of kebab, bacon or yogurt requires a lot of involvement of a chemist.

Acrylamide - cancer risk

Acrylamide is a compound that is formed in food at high temperatures during frying and baking in the so-called Maillard reaction. It is made up of sugars and the amino acid asparagine, and the effect is a characteristic browning and crunchiness, e.g. of bread crusts. Only that bread contains about 20 µg of acrylamide in 1 kg, and crisps even 3500 µg / kg. Corn crisps,which we like to give to children so much, they contain as much as 2400 µg of acrylamide per 1 kg. Acrylamide is toxic to the nervous system, and long-term exposure to this compound causes damage to the central and peripheral nervous systems. It also causes an increased risk of cancer, incl. thyroid, testes, lungs, skin and breasts.

Are crisps addictive?

Often the first reason we reach for crisps is the pleasure that comes from eating them. We like to munch. We like the distinctive blend of fat, sugar and s alt to please the brain. It has also been found that when you digest the crisps, your intestines release opioid compounds similar to the active ingredient in marijuana. All this means that you can not stop eating the chips, and despite the good intentions, we finish eating only after the package is completely empty. A group of unhe althy foods that you can't stop eating has even got its English name:moreishness . Chips have some effects on the brain like alcohol or drugs - while eating them, the reward center responsible for the feeling of pleasure and addiction is stimulated. This was confirmed in studies on rats that were fed chips. Pleasure binge eating as a disorder also got its name - it's hedonic hyperphagia. Unfortunately, frequent eating of crisps can lead to it.

With what to replace the chips?

Reaching for snacks while watching a movie, drinking beer and meeting friends is almost a ritual. We rarely want to give it up. To protect your he alth and weight from unpleasant consequences, it is worth replacing the chips with other snacks. They will be valuable and tasty, for example:

  • dried vegetables in spices, e.g. carrots and beetroot, available at the store,
  • kale chips,
  • sweet potato chips,
  • baked vegetables, sliced ​​with spices and olive oil, e.g. carrots, parsley, celery,
  • raw vegetables such as carrots, cucumbers, celery or peppers, cut into sticks and dipped in a garlic sauce made from yoghurt,
  • zucchini slices baked with tomato and mozzarella,
  • olives stuffed on toothpicks,
  • baked chickpeas with spices.

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