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The Global Fast Food Market and Its Harmful Effects on Health and Society

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Question: Write a 700 word opinion on the topic - The Global Fast Food Market and Its Harmful Effects on Health and Society that critically analyses the challenges with realizing aspirations of the common good in your professional community, locally and especially globally.

Answer: The term, "common good," refers to the sum total of social conditions that allow people, either in a group or as individuals, to reach their fulfilment fully and more easily (Velasquez, et al., 2014). This view is in alignment with Roman Catholicism as well, and the various concepts regarding society often concern the well-being of a person within the community. Various appeals regarding the common good have also resurfaced, such as in terms of social responsibilities of businesses, discussions pertaining to environmental pollution, and matters concerning education, poverty and crime (Velasquez, et al., 2014). Ethicists also described "common good" as being synonymous with the general conditions that can be utilised to everyone's advantage equally.

The establishment and maintenance of the common good requires the cooperation from all levels, especially when it comes to the social conditions to which the citizens of a community, or the entire world, are subject to (Dahland Soss, 2014). It is easy to assume that the common good would benefit all people on a wider scale, but societies often face many hurdles that hinder them from successfully achieving those objectives.

The fast food market is one that has interfered with the common good of the communities, both locally and globally. The consumption of such food products has brought more harm than betterment to the people, and this has affected not only the health but also the numerous other aspects.The trans fats, sugars and other harmful additives commonly found in the fast foods are responsible for the increase in the insulin levels, which in turn triggers inflammations within our bodies (Scheibye-Knudsen, et al., 2014). This leads to glycation, thereby speeding up the ageing process of the human bodies, as the capacity to fight the elements causing premature ageing is hindered significantly.

Fast foods have been widely known to induce health problems such as headaches among many others (Shau,etal., 2016). This is due to the chemicals that are found in the food colouring used in processed meats and other items, and this in turn increases the dependency of the people on painkillers such as aspirin, which have their own harmful effects. Even the meat products and eggs used for the production of fast food are often sourced from farms that do have humane methods of treating the animals, which equals to animal abuse and cruelty (Agger, 2012).This further raises the issues pertaining to the assembly lines, as the farming facilities often work overtime, slaughtering and processing thousands of animals every week simply in a bid to meet the market demands. This increased demand has also fuelled the need for enabling animals to grow quickly, which means that they have to be pumped full of hormones to ensure that they can grow quickly and have more flesh content. These artificially synthesised hormones cause major health issues within the human body, not to mention the debilitating effects they inflict on the animals (Kushi, et al., 2012).

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On a global scale, the fast food market has increased the generation of the waste that is generated in the form of packaging. A significant share of the landfill litter is accounted for by fast-food companies due to the packaging that uses plastic, Styrofoam and other inorganic materials (Hawkins, 2012). These take a long time to break down and therefore pollutes the environment, creating major issues for the people who are inhabiting it.

Studies have revealed that there is a strong link between depression and the consumption of fast food, even when the amount is small (Sánchez-Villegas, et al., 2012). People who consume fast food on a daily basis are more likely to develop some kind of mental illness or the other in due time.

Furthermore, the amount of energy and other resources required to produce a simple cheeseburger is serious enough to make a big difference (Hutchinson, Singh and Walker, 2012). The slaughtering of the animals for the meat, the transportation processes, etc. all contribute to the practices that harm the environment.

It is therefore clear that the global fast food market brings more harm to the society in terms of both the local and the global communities. The detrimental effects it has on the health and overall well-being of the people as well as the environment is something that needs to be pondered upon, as it is harmful for the common good of the communities.

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