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Are Hot Cheetos Bad For You?

Also Known As: FLAMIN' HOT Cheese Flavored Snacks



Short answer

Hot Cheetos contain little nutritional value and are not good for health. In extreme cases, this spicy snack has even sent children to the hospital.



Recommended Alternative

Long answer

Flamin’ Hot Cheetos (or also called Hot Cheetos) are a poor diet choice because of their high levels of salt, fat, various artificial colors and flavors and other potentially harmful ingredients.

This, of course, is not too much of a surprise considering it is junk food. However, Hot Cheetos have caught national attention because of the extreme side effects that many children have experienced from consuming too much of their favorite Cheetos snack.

Why are these children getting sick? The Hot Cheetos recipe is made with a concoction of artificial spice and monosodium glutamate (MSG) to create its unique hot flavoring. When Hot Cheetos are eaten excessively, this spice can cause an upset stomach, bloating, painful burning sensations, acid reflux, hiccups, and vomiting.

Because of the raised alarm and increase in emergency room visits, many school districts have decided to ban selling Hot Cheetos on their campus.

Doctors have recognized that there is a price to pay for those that enjoy eating spicy processed snacks like Hot Cheetos. Consumers are damaging their stomach lining and setting themselves up for ulcerations, erosions and creating a risk of peptic ulcer disease.

Besides the sickly side effects that were mentioned, parents have also shown concern about their child’s noted red stool thinking that it’s blood (from an internal bleeding). This is actually caused by the bright red and orange dye coated generously on the outside of each Cheeto. Although not a major concern for the child, it certainly weighs on the mental health of parents.

So you’d think it would be easy enough to just warn everybody to avoid the snack so they don’t get sick. Well, what makes it worse is that these Hot Cheetos are addictive, literally.

All of the ingredients mixed into this snack are there for a reason. Studies have shown that Hot Cheetos and similar spicy snacks will trigger a response in the brain that could be labeled as addiction. So even though kids are getting sick, they can’t help but shovel down more bags.

Hot Cheetos are mostly made out of corn (most likely GMO) and sweetened with high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) which can increase the risk of various ailments including obesity, metabolic syndrome, and liver damage. Because they are also high in salt, eating them as a regular snack could potentially cause dehydration and high blood pressure. 

Possible short-term side effects

  • acid reflux
  • bloating
  • hiccups
  • burning sensation
  • vomiting
  • red stool

Possible long-term side effects

  • ulcerations
  • erosions
  • peptic ulcer disease
  • weight gain
  • dehydration
  • high blood pressure
  • cancer

Ingredients to be aware of

Our Wellness Pick (what is this?)

Simply7 Lentil Chips

  • Gluten-free snack
  • Protein-rich lentils
  • Spicy jalapeño flavor
  • 4 Oz convenience
Learn More!

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Aubrie Robinson
Published on: 04-27-2016
Last updated: 12-15-2023

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Aubrie Robinson
Published on: 04-27-2016
Last updated: 12-15-2023

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