Have you ever wondered how the food you eat is really made and how unhealthy manufactured or processed food really is?
Well, we know now, all thanks to refreshingly honest insiders about the production of food, here’s what they revealed..
1. There is a safety threshold.
All food ingredients and nutrients have a limit. Too much of one thing can be bad for you, especially if it’s a bad thing. If everything you eat comes from a box or can, you should have reason to be concerned. If you eat a variety of foods, well-balanced, then you don’t need to worry about this.
2. Synthetic flavors may be necessary.
As our palette varies and more and more nations want Western flavors, there is a chance we will run out of natural resources to create these tastes naturally. Vanilla is a good example. Derived from a bean in an orchid, there is only so much vanilla in the world. A good replacement is to make vanillin from algae, which smells, tastes and acts the same and your body can’t tell the difference.
3. Crackers are as bad for you as chips.
Most crackers are made with refined grains, and use fat, salt and sugar to create the flavor. What’s more many crackers have added preservatives to make them last longer, like chips. This applies to around 99% of crackers… So stay away.
4. Manufacturers hide things under natural flavoring.
The package may say it contains natural flavoring, but it doesn’t mean it is. Many manufacturers will disguise other ingredients as natural flavors and get away with it.
5. Red coloring in food often comes from crushed insects.
Do you know what carmine and cochineal extract are? They are little powdered bugs, and a safe way of coloring food red, despite being an allergen for some people. Sadly, other alternatives are derived from petroleum and have been linked to hyperactivity and even cancer, and so insects are definitely the better option for red food.
6. Watch out for hidden sugars.
Ingredients lists are always baffling, but this is often intentionally so. Many manufacturers will hide sugar under different names such as: cane crystals, high-fructose corn syrup, dextrose, fruit juice concentrate, evaporated cane juice, and agave nectar. This is often to disguise a large amount of sugar so watch out.
7. Expect unlabelled ingredients in your food.
A large number of foods contain extra ingredients that won’t be labelled, such as pesticides, that often come from the packaging. There may be tiny pieces of cardboard and/or plastic. Nasty.
8. Look out for fake fiber.
Lots of products advertise that they are “high in fiber,” but be aware that this may not be naturally occurring fiber you get from whole grains and vegetables. Look out for fake-fiber ingredients such as chicory root, polydextrose and maltodextrin, which cause excessive bloating, gas, and other stomach problems.
9. Cheese often isn’t cheese.
Processed cheeses and some shredded cheese is often not really cheese. To make production simple and cost-effective, manufacturers use processed milk protein concentrate or whey protein concentrate. But don’t worry these products aren’t called cheese, they’ll have to be called “pasteurized prepared cheese products.”
10. Meat has nitrates, even if it says it doesn’t.
Most meat products have natural nirates through celery powder, even if they say they don’t, the ones they gain from the celery are actually the same as traditional nitrates.
11. Multi-grain products are not a healthy choice.
The consumer often confuses multi-grain with whole grain. Multi-grain products have a number of grains in them, but whole grain is the healthy one you need.
So the next time you are at the supermarket wondering what to have for dinner,you should think twice about the products you buy and the food you eat. Things aren’t always what they seem…
By Charlotte H.