Junk food is an uncomplimentary term for food containing a large number of calories from sugar or fat with little fiber, protein, vitamins or minerals. The term can also refer to high protein food like meat prepared with saturated fat. Food from many hamburger joints, pizza places, and fried chicken outlets is often considered junk food. Concerns about the negative health effects resulting from a junk food-heavy diet, especially obesity, have resulted in public health awareness campaigns, and restrictions on advertising and sale in several countries.
Within our research, we were unable to identify the origin of National Junk Food Day.
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National Junk Food Day 2018:
Each year on July 21st we observe National Junk Food Day. This day is dedicated to the foods that everyone loves to snack on. Junk foods by definition are usually high in fats, sugars, salt, and calories and contain very little nutritional value.
With the advent of packaged foods during the late 1800s, junk food made its way into American life. Still, home-cooked meals remained the standard for several more decades. It wasn’t until after World War II that industry took off and began producing products at an increased rate. From the frozen food aisle to fast food chains, there became a myriad of choices for consumers to choose from. Potato chips, baked goods and so much more became available, prepackaged and ready to go.
By the 1970s, junk foods were given a name and a bad one, too. Michael Jacobson, a microbiologist, is credited with coining the phrase and set out to curb our appetite for the high sugar, high salt, high preservative foods Americans were consuming at an alarming rate.
While Burgers and fries, tacos and ice cream cones, are known to be detrimental to our waistlines, cholesterol, and blood sugar numbers, an occasional indulgence shouldn’t have much of an impact to a healthy, diverse diet and lifestyle. Also, there are healthy versions of our favorite junk foods!
HOW TO CELEBRATE?
Maybe every day is Junk Food Day for ya, but according to our food holiday calendar, July 21 is the official holiday. We’re not saying you should consume more salts, fats, and sugars today, but if you decide to, here are 16 recipes for homemade twists on the junky classics, like tater tots, Kit Kat bars, and beef jerky.
Because we couldn’t let National Junk Food Day go by without celebrating just a little bit, we thought it’d be fun to share some of our favorite home-made junk food, without all of the chemicals and processing. Who needs Slim Jims and Ho Hos when you can have homemade candy corn and a fluffernutter sandwich made with homemade honey vanilla fluff?
Chocolate Peppermint Marshmallows
Easy Homemade Doughnuts
Honey Vanilla Fluff
Homemade Kit Kat Bars
Maple Walnut Graham Crackers
Spicy Peanut Caramel Corn
Fudge Cookie and Mint Chip Ice Cream Sandwiches
Curried Sweet Potato Chips
Perfect Thing and Crispy French Fries
Extra Crunchy Chips
Celebrate by consuming your favorite junk food. Post on social media using #NationalJunkFoodDay. You can also celebrate by taking a walk or doing some yard work to burn off those extra calories.