Junk Food Linked to Asthma, Eczema

by | January 16, 2013 at 2:51 PM | Food, Health

(iStockphoto)

Auckland University researchers found a correlation between junk food consumption and diseases in children.

By Jessica Chou, TheDailyMeal.com Editor

Here’s another argument for adding more fruits and vegetables to your life; researchers at Auckland University in New Zealand surveyed teenagers in 50 different countries and found that those who ate burgers three times a week were more likely to suffer from severe asthma.

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The researchers looked at the diets of 181,000 kids ages 6 to 7, and then 319,000 pre-teens, 13 to 14 years old, the Sun reports.

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The results? Having burgers three times a week or more was linked to a 39 percent likelihood of getting severe asthma in teenagers, 27 percent in young kids. Both groups were also more susceptible to getting the eye condition rhinoconjunctivitis, with symptoms like nasal congestion, runny nose, sneezing, red eyes, and itchy nose or eyes.

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Luckily, researchers also found that having three weekly portions of fruits and vegetables does cut the risk of developing these diseases by 14 percent in kids, 11 percent in teens. And while authors cannot say their results prove junk food’s causality, they can say that fruits and vegetables probably help. “Fast food may be contributing to increasing asthma, rhinoconjunctivitis and eczema,” study authors wrote. “Regular consumption of fruit and vegetables is likely to protect against these diseases.”
The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.