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What’s your biggest junk food weakness? Tell us all about it in its sugary, salty, glory.

Some of you are going to be mad at me, but coffee is my worst weakness. The last time I remember consuming junk food with abandon was in high school. In those teen years my favorite soda was Royal Crown Cola, but I was never an addict. In fact I’ve never been big on sweet drinks, or candy. I think my mother was willing to have junk food in the house, but as a mother (well, just as a consumer), I have never bought the stuff. I didn’t want my kids growing up on empty calories, or suspicious chemicals. My husband have never eaten that sort of stuff either, so it was easy for us not to buy it. Then of course there is the expense. Adding those kind of items to one’s shopping list add up, and certainly if you’re on a budget, just buying food for three “square meals” a day is costly enough.

Over the years as I’ve had children and now grandchildren, I’ve become even more concerned about food additives and dyes, and wonder about what all those chemicals do to people. Some have been associated with hyperactivity, cancer, increased tooth decay and enamel erosion. Additives to the food we eat, don’t even include the additives which have fed to the animals we eat — which can end up having an effect on our health and development. It’s interesting the number of food that pregnant women are advised to avoid because of the chemical or other elements that are found in them. If they’re not considered safe for a woman and her unborn baby, makes you wonder if they’re really safe for anyone.

Obviously we don’t have the ability to grow our own food like people used to, and know where the things we eat come from, but we can be certain that food safety and some processing has made our food safer than it was a century ago. Not everything added to food is bad, but it’s worthwhile being aware of what additives are potentially harmful, which are fairly harmless, and read labels before buying products.

Then, of course, there’s the weight thing. Some of us really can’t afford to eat junk food, so if you’re like me, eating empty calories isn’t a wise option. It’s interesting too, that while diet sodas may decrease caloric intake, the body still metabolizes the substitute sweetener like it would sugar.