Dangerous food additives are increasingly sneaking into our favorite foods.
We must automatically look at the ingredient lists of our everyday products and understand what they all mean. In most countries food preservatives are still coded (E-number) and people have no clue of what they are eating.
If any of the following 10 nasty preservatives shows up in the ingredient list of a product you regularly consume, leave it on the supermarket shelf and look for a safer alternative.
These nasty 10 have been linked to cancer and other severe health problems:
E-250 to E-252
Used to stabilize food color and add artificial flavor.
It is found in many products such as meats, ham, bacon, sausages, hamburgers, smoked fish, etc.
When grilled it’s even more dangerous -it transforms into a reactive compound that has been directly linked to cancer.
2-Monosodium Glutamate (MSG)
A very common flavor enhancer used in a wide range of foods. It adds a meaty salty flavor to many processed foods and is commonly used in meats, soups, Asian food, sauces, dressings, potato chips, frozen foods, etc.
It has been linked to brain damage, asthma, headaches, stomach disorders, fatigue, depression, and obesity among others health problems.
Artificial sweetener found in “diet” products, low-calorie desserts, gelatin, drinks, etc.
Also known as Nutrasweet or Equal in the U.S.
Studies have shown that lifelong consumption may increase risk of cancer or other neurological problems.
4-Food Colorings: Blue 1, 2; Red 2, 3; Green 3; Yellow 6
These colorings are found in thousands of products, and they have all been linked to cancer.
Some examples of Blue 1 and 2 are found in beverages, baked goods, candy etc and it has been found to cause cancer in mice.
Red 2 and 3 are widely used, some examples are to dye cherries, fruit juice, candy, baked goods and have been linked to thyroid tumors.
And the widely used yellow 6 (eg.beverages, gelatin, breads, baked goods,sausage, candy, etc) has been linked to tumors of the adrenal grand and the kidney.
It’s very common in industrial breads, white flour, and rolls to add volume to baked goods. Most bromate breaks down into a harmless form, however, small amounts can create a risk for people. California now requires a cancer warning on products with this ingredient.
It prevents fats and oils from going bad and it’s found in many products, such as meats, soups, gums, etc.
It has been linked to cancer and you should avoid it.
7.BHA and BHT
E-320 and E-321
Butylated Hydoxyanisole (BHA) and Butylated Hydozyttoluene (BHT) are used to prevent foods from oxidizing and keeping fats and oils from going rancid. They are found in countless products such as dry cereals, potato chips, vegetable oils, etc.
They have been linked to cancer in numerous studies.
Olestra is Procter & Gamble’s synthetic fat that is not absorbed as it passes through the digestive system, so it has no calories. It’s found in chips and diet foods/beverages.
Olestra can cause diarrhea, loose stools, abdominal cramps, flatulence, and other adverse effects. Those symptoms are sometimes severe. Even more importantly, olestra reduces the body’s ability to absorb fat-soluble carotenoids from fruits and vegetables.
Found in baked goods, chewing gum, and gelatin desserts.
It’s a new additive and there aren’t many studies to confirm its safety, if possible try to avoid it.
10. Partially Hydrogenated Vegetable Oils
Found in margarine, crackers, fried restaurant foods, baked goods, icing, microwave popcorn, etc.
Vegetable oil (liquid), can be made into a semi-solid form by reacting it with hydrogen. Partial hydrogenation reduces the levels of polyunsaturated oils – and also creates trans fats, which promote heart disease.
Harvard School of Public Health has issued a warning regarding the consumption of margarine, snack foods and other foods containing hydrogenated oils.
If you don’t eat butter, there are some alternatives to hydrogenated margarine, my favorite is Earth Balance.