Excessive consumption of bread, butter, cooking oil is dangerous to health : ICMR

ICMR issues the latest dietary guidelines

Ultra processed foods (Credits : ICMR Guidelines)

New Delhi – The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) issued the latest dietary guidelines for Indians stating that bread, butter, cooking oil, and milk-based health drinks are all ‘Ultra-processed foods’ that can lead to severe health complications.

According to the council, ‘C’ category foods include foods made in factories like bread, cereals, cakes, chips, biscuits, fries, jams, sauces, mayonnaise, ice cream, protein pack powder, peanut butter, soy chunks, tofu (A paneer-like product made of Soy beans).

Group C Foods (Credits : ICMR Guidelines)

The ICMR has included cheese, butter, meat, cereals, processed flour of millets and soybeans, energy drinks, milk, soft drinks and juices in the ‘C’ category of foods that are processed for longer shelf life.

Why is Ultra-processed foods unhealthy ?  

(Credits : ICMR Guidelines)

Ultra-processed foods are altered and have high levels of unhealthy fats, refined sugars, and salt. They also undergo industrial processes, like hydrogenation and moulding and contain additives like dyes, stabilizers, flavour enhancers, emulsifiers, and defoaming agents. Similarly, fresh fruits are kept frozen for several days to avoid spoilage. All these processes remove nutrients from the food. Factories add harmful substances to the food to preserve its taste, colour and longevity.

Ultra-processed foods cause various diseases

(Credits : ICMR Guidelines)

The ICMR states that these Ultra-processed foods are abnormally high in fats and low in essential nutrients like fibre. These foods are cheaper and easily available. Many people like it. These foods contain extra sugar and salt. These can accelerate aging and also lead to obesity and are associated with a higher risk of diabetes, strokes, and heart attack. Overall, these foods harm our health.