Processed Food: Fad or Fitnah?


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Klaudia Khan

Klaudia Khan is a revert Muslimah, originally from Poland, a wife, a mother and a writer. She lives in West Yorkshire, UK and Islamabad, Pakistan and spends at least a couple of months each year in Poland. She's interested in exploring and crossing the cultural borders, living green, homeschooling and others. She can be reached at klaudia.khan@hotmail.co.uk.

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processed foodGo to any supermarket and you will see shelves upon shelves of ready-to-cook meals, canned food, ready-to-use fried onions, frozen vegetables and the like – all tempting you to save your time and try them out. At the same time, you might have heard that processed food is totally unhealthy, and you should avoid it as much as possible. So what should you do?

It is important to remember that virtually everything we eat is processed in some way or the other. Peeling, cutting, mashing, cooking, baking or frying is all referred to as food processing. All cooked food is, therefore, processed food. It doesn’t mean that all processed food is bad food. There is a huge difference between mechanical processing, which may be essential for making food eatable (such as peeling the bananas), heat processing that changes the texture and may change the nutritional value, but at the same time makes food more tasty and easily digestible, and chemical processing that is largely used by the industrial food manufacturers and which can turn good, natural ingredients into nutritionally worthless or even harmful products. Such chemically processed products are most commonly referred to as processed foods and must be avoided.

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