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10 reasons you might want to reconsider your fast food habit

6. Trans fats

You haven’t heard that word in a while, probably because it was banned from a few restaurants. Why? It can raise your LDL cholesterol, or bad cholesterol, leading to a heart attack or cardiac arrest. However, not all fast-food restaurants are required to list trans fat content on menus, so it’s possible the food you’re eating may still have it, and lots of it. Fast-food items particularly high in trans fats include french fries, fried fish filet sandwiches and fried chicken, for example.

7. Slime

Now, you’ve heard all about the pink slime, and fortunately it’s not something many of the restaurants use anymore to preserve their meats. But that’s not the only slime you may find at these fast-food joints. In fact, a few fast-food restaurants in Wrigley Field were shut down because they had black slime on their ice machines! Before you take a slurp of that Diet Coke, make sure you aren’t drinking bacteria-infested slime instead.

More: 15 things you should never order from a chain restaurant

8. Environmental hazards

Fast food isn’t just hurting your ability to fit into skinny jeans — it’s actually killing the environment. According to the Matador Network, there have been so many pollutants added to the Mississippi River from factory farms that it has a “dead” zone the size of New Jersey, meaning no fish or creature can live there. Oh, but that’s not all. Methane, a gas produced by factory-herded cows, is 23 times better at trapping heat than carbon dioxide is, which is a large factor of global warming. Each time you buy a Big Mac, you’re not only killing yourself, but you’re killing the polar bears too. Hard to take that first bite knowing that, right?

9. High fat, low nutritional value

This one’s a no-brainer, clearly. The food is loaded with preservatives, the preferred cooking method is deep-fried, and even the “healthy” options aren’t all that good for you. In fact, the McDonald’s crispy chicken salad has more than 18 grams of fat. Add the dressing, and you’re at 36 grams. Many of the desserts contain fake sweeteners, which have been linked to obesity. Plus the chicken, which is one of the leanest cuts of protein you can have, is breaded and deep-fried, which takes away almost all of the redeeming qualities it had going for it, not to mention gets rid of its health benefits.

10. Obesity

Fast food isn’t the cause of obesity, certainly not, but it’s not helping our nation fight it either. In fact, a study published by CBS News found that children who regularly eat fast food gain up to 6 pounds more a year than those who don’t. With the obestiy rate so high and only growing (more than 15 percent of American children are obese), those 6 pounds are quickly adding up. Luckily, due to many lawsuits, many fast-food restaurants are required to offer apple slices and milk with their kids’ meals. If you still don’t believe us, watch Super Size Me.

More: 10 best things to order when fast food is your only option

Before you go, check out our slideshow below.

21 crazy fast-food mashups that went way too far
Image: Inti St Claire/Getty images

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