The Dangerous 10 – Top 10 Worst Food Additives
Food additives are substances added during the processing or manufacture of a certain food in order to preserve flavors and freshness and to improve taste and appearance.
Although some of them have been used for centuries, the use of certain food additives is becoming widespread and some of them are extremely dangerous to health, I would even say toxic.
I am not talking about the occasional consumption of a certain processed food containing additives, which cannot harm anyone. I’m talking about everyday use. Statistics show that the average American spends about 90% of their budget on this type of food; which means that if you open an American fridge or look on the shelves, you’ll find tons of canned, dehydrated, artificial, or processed stuff, which is extremely unhealthy, and persistent consumption can cause health problems.
Typically, these food ingredients are very difficult to identify, both for the variety of names and codes with which they are labeled and for the very tiny fonts used to list them on the ingredient list.
Here is the list of the top 10 toxic ingredients.
Get your detective glass and start reading labels!
1) HFCS – High Fructose Corn Syrup
High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) is a highly refined artificial sweetener made from corn starch and found in almost all processed foods such as: bread and baked goods, salad dressing, candy , yogurts, sodas, etc. And according to some studies, it has become the number one source of calories in the United States.
Indeed, its easy handling and low cost have made it the number one substitute for granulated sugar: the amount of refined sugar we consume has decreased over the past 40 years, while we consume almost 20 times more HFCS.
HFCS is linked to weight gain, raises your LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels, and contributes to the development of diabetes and tissue damage, among other harmful effects.
Also, recent research published by the American Association for Cancer Research found that the fructose in HFCS promotes the growth of cancer, especially pancreatic cancer.
2) Sodium nitrate and sodium nitrite (NaNO3- NaNO2)
Both are chemical compounds used as a food additive to preserve and give deli meats, smoked fish and poultry a nice pinkish red color. Although their destination seems harmless, these ingredients are highly carcinogenic and their consumption is linked to gastrointestinal cancers and heart disease.
Indeed, under certain conditions, they can form nitrosamine compounds, carcinogenic molecules in animals and humans.
Additionally, in massive doses, nitrite – and nitrate, which under certain conditions turns into nitrite – can lead to a condition called methemoglobinemia. In our body, nitrites indeed have the ability to change the structure of hemoglobin into methemoglobin: the binding of oxygen to which results in an increased affinity for oxygen in the remaining heme sites. This leads to an overall reduced ability of the red blood cell to release oxygen to the tissues and this can occur in tissue hypoxia.
Can’t give up eating salami, bacon or ham? Choose those that are not hardened.
Sodium nitrate is listed by its INS number 251 or E number E251, sodium nitrite has E number E250.
3) MSG – Monosodium glutammate
Monosodium glutamate (MSG) is a flavor enhancer commonly added to Chinese food, canned vegetables, soups and processed meats. While glutamic acid occurs naturally in our bodies and in many foods, such as tomatoes and cheese, those exploited by the processed food industry are produced chemically by hydrolysis of vegetable proteins with hydrochloric acid to disrupt peptide bonds or through fermentation. starch, sugar beet, sugar cane or molasses.
The substance produced has the ability to excite our taste buds and make everything delicious, which wouldn’t be a big deal if it hadn’t been shown that high levels of MSG can seriously damage brain chemistry, causing damage to areas of the brain. not protected by the blood-brain barrier.
4) Artificial colors
Food coloring is one of the most common ingredients in processed foods used to make your meals or drinks more desirable and appealing.
Nothing against that if they hadn’t been linked to serious health issues.
Blue #1 and Blue #2 (E133)
Banned in Norway, Finland and France. May cause chromosomal damage.
Found in candies, cereals, soft drinks, sports drinks and pet foods.
Dye red #3 (also red #40 – a more common dye) (E124)
Banned in 1990 after 8 years of debate for use in many foods and cosmetics. This dye continues to be on the market while supplies last! It has been shown to cause thyroid cancer and chromosomal damage in laboratory animals, may also interfere with brain-nerve transmission.
Found in fruit cocktail, maraschino cherries, cherry pie mix, ice cream, candies, baked goods and more!
Yellow #6 (E110) and Tartrazine Yellow (E102)
Banned in Norway and Sweden. Increases tumors of kidneys and adrenal glands in laboratory animals, may cause chromosomal damage.
Found in American cheese, mac and cheese, candy and soft drinks, lemonade and more! (source Food Matters website)
The slogan “Eat the Rainbow” is always cool, but be natural, please!
5) BHA and BHT
BHA (Butylated hydroxyanisole), also listed under the E320 label, and BHT (Butylated hydroxytoluene) are two organic compounds widely used by the food industry as preservatives due to their antioxidant properties as they can prevent rancidity in foods containing fats.
Although declared safe by the FDA, the US National Institutes of Health have reported that they can form cancer – causing reactive compounds in our bodies that can lead to cancer.
In addition, they can disrupt your hormonal and neurological system.
BHA is found in tons of food: take a bag of crisps, a box of cereal, a packet of frozen sausages or just eat some chewing gum, and you have a high probability of finding BHA and/or BHT ( or even worse, both) in the ingredient list.
6) Artificial sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners are sugar substitutes used to sweeten food drinks without all the calories of sucrose.
Aspartame, also known as NutraSweet, Equal and codified ad E951, is the best known. It is 200 times sweeter than sugar, but its effect on the human body is not as sweet as its taste: it is a neurotoxin and carcinogen.
Some studies claim it to be the most dangerous substance on the market, with a wide range of health effects ranging from mild issues such as memory problems, headaches and dizziness, to more serious problems, such as multiple sclerosis, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, fibromyalgia, and emotional disorders.
Avoid acetylsulfame K, saccharin (Sweet’N Low, SugarTwin) and sucralose (Splenda).
7) Sulfur Dioxide
Sulfur dioxide is a chemical compound with antimicrobial and antioxidant properties, used as a preservative for dried fruits such as dried apricots, raisins and prunes and added to fruit juices, granola bars, breakfast cereals lunch to prevent discoloration, ripening and rotting.
Checking food labels for this, and for sulphites in general, with numbers in the E220-228 range, is helpful; however, companies are only required to list it if there are more than 10 parts per million (ppm) in the finished product.
While harmless to healthy people when used at recommended concentrations, it may cause asthma and respiratory problems when ingested by sensitive individuals, even at high dilutions.
It also destroys vitamins B1 and E.
8) Trans Fat
“Trans fats, or trans-unsaturated fatty acids, trans fatty acids, are a type of unsaturated fat that occurs in small amounts in nature, but has become widely produced industrially from vegetable fats for use in the margarine, snack foods, packaged baked goods, and fried fast food beginning in the 1950s. Trans fats have been shown to be consistently associated, in an intake-dependent manner, with increased risk of disease heart disease, one of the leading causes of death in Western countries.
In fact, trans fats have the power to increase LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, while decreasing the amount of HDL (good) in our body. Trans fats are abundant in fast food restaurants. Here is a list of health problems linked to high consumption of trans fats: Alzheimer’s disease, coronary heart disease, cancer, diabetes, obesity, liver dysfunction, infertility, depression, memory deficit.
Keep them in mind as you enjoy your fries!
9) Sodium Benzoate
Sodium benzoate is the sodium salt of benzoic acid and it is famous for its antifungal properties.
Get yourself a can of soda and you will surely find it as an ingredient (E211). Indeed, it is heavily used by the soft drink industry, and not only. This chemical compound is mainly added to acidic foods such as pungents, sauces, vinegars in order to enhance their flavor.
When mixed with ascorbic acid (well known as vitamin C), sodium benzoate creates an unfortunate side effect: it forms benzene which is known as a powerful carcinogen, which contributes to the formation of many types of cancer.
10) Potassium Bromate
Finally, Potassium Bromate, used in the United States as an additive to flour to improve the elasticity and resistance of the dough and allow it to rise higher.
In 1999, the International Agency for Research on Cancer declared potassium bromate a possible human carcinogen. It has since been banned in a number of countries, including Europe and Canada, but not in the United States, where studies have found it in more than 86 baked goods found on supermarket shells.
Check your bread, rolls, French toast or pastry dough before purchasing. Please!