(NaturalNews) If someone were to tell you that there was an element of poison in your plate of food, what would your reaction be? Truth is, we do eat poison. Regularly if not every day. Unless we are informed and aware to begin with, that is. Our food is poisoned with pesticides and other types of chemicals, which have serious implications for health.
Even our kids are exposed to the worst kinds of chemicals in food specially targeted at them. Chemicals in food kill a child`s developing taste buds. Therefore, she won`t know the difference between a natural taste, (or how strawberry yogurt ought to taste), and an artificial but deceptively good taste.
Food for children tends to be full of color, additives, MSG and artificial sweeteners.
According to an article published in The Guardian (Saturday May 15, 2004), the following list of ingredients are a big no-no, and should never be given to kids:
Monosodium glutamate (E621); disodium 5`-ribonucleotide (E635); artificial sweeteners; sodium benzoate (E211); sulphur dioxide (E220); the colourings Quinoline Yellow (E104), Brilliant Blue (E133), Sunset Yellow (E110), Carmoisine (E122), Ponceau 4R (E124), and Indigo Carmine (E132). Even vanilla essence is bad, bad, bad. The label on the ice cream container must say vanilla extract, if not, don`t eat the ice cream. Vanilla essence is a chemical.
There have been reports to even suggest that vanilla essence is nothing but industrial effluents, bottled and distributed as the sweet smelling spice. At this point, it is worthwhile acknowledging what seemed like an anti-advertisement for m&m-type sweets: it ran a caption that said "food
additives are as harmful as lead". Now, if that doesn`t tell us a thing or two then what will?
Chemicals have almost become accepted as part of life and normal, or maybe we don`t ask enough of the right questions. Whatever the reason, the time has come for us to take stock of what we put on our plates.
Even so-called fresh produce is laced with pesticides. And other healthy foods such as yogurt, are slowly sliding down the scale into the "supposedly healthy" category. This is because the list of ingredients is not only suspect, but outright harmful in many cases.
For example, according to the same article in The Guardian, "Suspect the worst when ingredients listings mention loose terms such as `flavorings` or `colorings`. Likewise, with the word `flavor`. The difference between snacks that are `cheese flavor` and `cheese flavored` is that the latter actually has cheese in it."
Pick your snacks and packed foods with utmost awareness. Eat produce that is fresh, seasonal and organically grown. Eating organic
could mean a drain on your wallet. It could also be carbon footprint intensive (like eating organic strawberries flown in from Peru, for example). In either case, one could opt for produce from a local farm that doesn`t spray its produce. This means being informed and aware when you buy your food and knowing where to buy your food too. It also means participating actively in one of the most important aspects of your survival: gathering food and eating it. In other words, take responsibility for the food you eat.
Most animal products such as milk and eggs are under the scanner now and rightly so. If you love your toast with egg on it, then make sure the egg is certified organic and has a seal to that effect on the box. Recently, however, there has been a campaign against eggs, organic or not, because there is evidence of growth promoting hormones in it. So you just may be better off giving up eggs altogether. If you can`t do that overnight, then the least you can do is switch to the organic variety.
Educate your kids to eat more fruit and vegetables rather than sugary treats at the end of the school day. Teach them when they are very young the value of eating healthy and what it really means to do so. Even babies these days can`t escape the chemical
onslaught. Diapers and baby products are made using the harshest of chemicals such as dioxins, for example. Search for alternatives. Babies deserve it. Besides, you will be doing the earth a big favor by supporting chemical-free products, be it packaged food, soap, baby lotion or carrots.
About the author
Nanditha is a freelance journalist and writer with more than just a passing interest in heath and wellness, food safety and environmental impacts on children's health. She is a yoga and wellness coach, recently relocated to New Zealand. She has published a book on yoga for pregnancy titled "Blissful Mom, Blissful Baby". Please visit http://www.bindumandala.com
for more information.
Her blogs can be seen at http://www.bindumandalayoga.blogspot.comhttp://www.look-before-you-eat.blogspot.com