Processed Foods Make You Fat, Stupid and Depressed.

Let’s take a look at this statement and examine it for what its worth. Processed food includes refined grains, anything with sugar or salt added to it, fried foods, high fat dairy products, food in a box – you know what I’m taking about.

So how do we know eating processed foods makes you fat, stupid and depressed?

A 2009 UK study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry looked at middle aged office workers and found that the ones who ate the most processed foods had the highest rates of depression and were worse at tests that measured vocabulary and reasoning. The subjects who ate the least amounts of processed foods had the lowest incidence of depression and scored the highest on the cognitive tests.

Nowhere in nature do we find a food source that combines fat, sugar, and salt in one package. For example; berries have loads of sugar but no salt or fat. Steak has lots of fat but no sugar.

Under normal circumstances we get hungry and we eat. When our body senses we have eaten enough, we stop. There are complex hormonal control systems in place to manage the hunger -full cycle. Our brain gets involved by releasing neuro transmitters, dopamine for example, which makes us feel good when we eat substances that the brain recognizes as good to eat. We are biologically attuned to seek out things that taste sweet or salty and avoid things that taste bitter.

This all works perfectly when we eat foods in their natural unaltered state. The problem arises when we eat processed foods which have combined sugar, salt, and fat in a ratio that over loads our eating control mechanism and sends our pleasure centers into over drive. The result is we eat and eat a tremendous amount of calories before our brain recognizes we have eaten enough and signals a halt to the proceedings.

Think about this for a minute. How many apples could you possibly eat at one time? One or two maybe, three apples would be almost impossible to eat at once. How many bowls of Apple Jacks cereal could you eat at once? People eat 2 bowls of cereal all the time. An apple has 95 calories and 4 grams of fiber. A cup of apple jacks has 117 calories, no fiber, and you are still hungry.

Eat as many foods as possible in their unrefined, unprocessed, no sugar, no salt added state. You will be thinner, smarter, and happier.

You’ve heard of the Biggest Loser contest, well I’m running a contest. It’s called the “Your Best Body 12-Week Challenge.” And it’s free for everyone to participate.

There’s just something about contests/challenges like “Your Biggest Loser”  that really get folks motivated to exercise more than they would otherwise.

This is a great way to challenge yourself, with our help, and it won’t cost you a dime (just a small, one-time $10 donation to March of Dimes, a great local Charity here in Rhode Island).

I’m doing this to get more local folks the help they need to get the body they want . . . and to raise much needed funds for the March of Dimes. Find out more information by visiting our site:


Stay Strong and Healthy,


Peter Holmes,

That Gym Guy



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  22. It’s all well and good to have people praise your words, but how would you respond to those who would challenge them. I’m not saying that you’re wrong. In fact I agree, but your arguments are weak. It just wasn’t the information I was looking for.

    First of all, whoever conducted the study didn’t take into accountthat correlation does not imply causality. Ice cream sales are highest in the summer months as are the number of violent crimes. The sale of ice cream has been linked to violent crime, but does it cause it or when we hear about violent crimes do we all rush out and buy ice cream? Isn’t it plausible that those who are less intelligent, overweight, and/or depressed are less likely to care about their diet and taking care of themselves to begin with? Chicken or the egg…. Chicken or the egg.

    So being a fat, dumb, depressed guy myself, who only eats fast food, because it’s cheap and I’m broke, tell me more about how the chemicals in processed foods interact with the neurotransmitters to make me what I am. It just doesn’t seem fair to say that it isn’t healthy to have a glass of red wine with my steak, because that would be combining sugars and fats. So please also explain how it is different when they are combined in the stomach separately rather than outside of the stomach as separate ingredients in a processed recipe. Thanks!

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