Fast food may save you money but may increase your waistline


photo via wikimedia commons under creative commons license

The first fast food restaurant opened in 1921, and in the following century it has become an American staple.

Although it is an American staple, it has caused a bit of controversy. For example, obesity, being unhealthy, over commercializing, paper packaging and even animal cruelty. Despite all this, the fast food industry is still an $570 billion dollar industry. So, how do they make so much money despite the controversy and the health risks? One reason is convenience. Sometimes, people don’t feel like cooking. They still need to eat, and are looking for the easiest way to get something to eat. It is the easiest option because you don’t even have to leave your car.

Another reason is the price. Fast Food is cheaper than another other option. With meal deals like the 4 for 4 and the 5 dollar fill up you can gets the most for your money. For people who are living on a tight budget, this is their best option, even if it isn’t healthy. Another reason is the short wait time. In the modern era, we expect to get things very quickly, and with fast food you only have to wait a couple minutes at most. It is made for the fast paced society we live in.

With all the controversy fast food has caused, there have been discussions as to whether the government should get involved. On the federal level, the USDA released a regulation in July of 2016 that prohibits the sale of food or beverage that don’t meet certain nutritional standards during the school day, even for a fundraiser. On the state level California and Louisiana are the only states who have made laws involving food and beverage advertising. Eight local governments have made laws involving the sale of sugary drinks in kids’ meals, this includes fast food places.

There are two sides to this argument. One side says that the government should not be involve in what people eat, the parent should trust to make the right decision. The parents are the one’s who pay for the meals, so it up to them to decide what their kids will eat. The other side of the argument is the advertising and convenience of the these places make it too hard to resist, so these places must sell healthier stuff if they want to stay around. The companies should be the one’s to make these changes, but many don’t trust them to.

Fast food has so many positives and negatives. This arises a big question, what is the future of fast food? Due to how much it is loved and it’s economic importance, getting rid of it is not an option. These companies can’t go unregulated, however. Fast food companies should be honest about how unhealthy their food is, just like how cigarettes companies need to tell people cigarettes cause cancer.  Parents should also be educated on the risks of fast food. Whether it’s the companies, the government or both, their should be an effort to make the food healthier.