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Food additives

Common Additives in Your Food Contain Shocking Dangers, Part III

Thursday, March 25, 2010 by: Laura Weldon
Tags: food additives, chemicals, health news

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(NewsTarget) Food marketers are vying harder than ever for your shopping dollar. They use any of 14,000 additives to make their products last longer, taste fresher or seem more appealing. The health effects of these compounds, especially in combination, are only gradually becoming apparent.

Read all the details in our four part series highlighting the worst compounds typically added to the food supply.

BUTYLATED HYDROXYANISOLE (BHA)
This is a petroleum-derived antioxidant used to prevent oil-containing foods from becoming rancid. BHA is used by food processors to preserve meat products and fats, baked goods, cereals, snack foods, nuts, dehydrated foods and mixes, flavorings, desserts, beer, beverages, chewing gum and more.

Some studies have indicated BHA is safe; others have shown it causes cancer in animals. Opponents claim there are better alternatives such as incorporating vitamin E in the product or packing food under nitrogen.

According to the National Toxicology Program (funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) BHA is "reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen." The report also notes ominously that "a potential for consumer exposure to BHA by ingestion and dermal contact is widespread." The average daily intake of BHA in the U.S. diet has climbed precipitously since the 1970's.

HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP(HFCS)
This sweetener is much cheaper to produce than sugar so the food industry puts it in a wide range of processed foods from soup to nuts. In the U.S. the average person takes in 12 teaspoons of HFCS daily, but teens and certain high consumers ingest 80 percent more HFCS than the average.

This ingredient adds no vitamins, minerals or enzymes to the diet. Instead, HFCS takes away the body's stores of micronutrients and limits the heart's ability to use minerals such as copper, chromium and magnesium. It also converts more easily to body fat than other sugars.

The negative consequences of HFCS in the diet are profound. It is linked to heart disease, high blood levels of cholesterol and triglycerides and development of clots. It inhibits white blood cell activity. It unbalances blood sugar levels and may contribute to diabetic complications.

If that's not bad enough, studies have found nearly half of the samples tested were contaminated with mercury. The Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP) tested 55 popular brands where HFCS is the first or second ingredient listed on the label. Mercury was present in close to a third of the products sampled.

MONOSODIUM GLUTAMATE(MSG)
This flavor enhancer is found in the majority of processed foods, although often under many other names. On food ingredient listings these include (but are not limited to) hydrolyzed vegetable protein or HVP, yeast extract, autolyzed proteins, glutamate, yeast extract, glutamic acid and hydrolyzed protein.

Some people react immediately to MSG. They experience headaches, chest tightening, facial flushing and more. Most people don't easily notice this ingredient, so they have no warning signs of the long-term effects.

Although the FDA lists MSG as generally safe, according to Russell L Blaylock, author of Excitotoxins, this compound actually interferes with brain chemistry and causes cell damage. Dr. Blaylock links MSG to obesity, disruption of the endocrine system, certain autoimmune disorders and neurological diseases.

Sources
http://www.physorg.com/news183110037.html
http://www.cspinet.org/new/200806022.html
http://www.cspinet.org/reports/chemcuisine.h...
http://cspinet.org/new/pdf/mccann.pdf
http://dsc.discovery.com/news/2009/05/22/art...
Excitotoxins: The Taste That Kills by Russell L. Blaylock
http://www.answers.com/topic/phenylketonuria
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/06...
http://www.westonaprice.org/The-Double-Dange...
http://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:mP...
http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/mercury/
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content...
http://www.holisticmed.com/msg/msg-sources.t...
http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/...
http://archneur.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/abs...
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About the author

Laura Weldon lives on an organic farm and believes in bliss. Learn more about her book "Free Range Learning" by visiting at www.lauragraceweldon.com


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