Monday, December 27, 2010

Food Additives You Must Avoid

(Article first published as Top Food Additives You Really Need to Avoid on Technorati.)
When was the last time you closely looked at the ingredients inside of your favorite packaged food? The vast majority of foods bought at your local grocery store are the creation of food chemists, not Mother Nature. Most include a long list of synthetic chemicals and modified food components that are designed to enhance shelf life and provide flavorings that appeal to your sense of taste for sweetness, salt and fat.

The vast majorities of processed foods are packed with calories and have been stripped of any nutrients that we require to maintain optimal health. Over the course of years and decades, the lack of vitamins and minerals from natural foods slowly leads to chronic disease conditions such as diabetes, cancer, dementia and heart disease. The artificial chemical compounds in processed foods (all those items in the ingredients lists with names you can’t pronounce) become packed away in your fat tissue and lead to systemic inflammation and depleted antioxidant resources.

Food Additives Lead to Chronic Illness
There are more than 3,000 food additives approved for use in the US and considered ‘Generally Regarded as Safe’ (GRAS) by the FDA. More than 90% of the typical diet is composed of processed foods, meaning that very little food is eaten in its natural form providing nutrients that are properly absorbed by the body.

Food additives include preservatives, sweeteners, artificial colors and flavors as well as flavor enhancers, all designed to provide maximum calories with very little nutrition. The publication Food Matters lists the top food additives you must avoid to preserve your health.

Artificial Sweeteners: Most commonly found in diet or sugar-free drinks, gum, baked goods and even toothpaste, foods that contain aspartame have been shown to contribute to brain aging. Aspartame is neurotoxic and causes loss of memory and difficulty learning new tasks. Researchers believe it may be linked to increased incidence of brain tumors and diseases like lymphoma, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's.

High Fructose Corn Syrup: High Fructose Corn Syrup has been infused into most processed foods since its inception in the early 1970’s. Extensive scientific research has linked the sweetener to increased levels of obesity due to the way fructose is metabolized in the body and lipid abnormalities that cause diabetes and increased risk of heart disease.

Monosodium Glutamate: MSG is used in many processed foods as a flavor enhancer. It is known to cause neural excitation as it overloads neurons through increased electrical stimulation. The most common side effects are depression, disorientation, eye damage, fatigue and headache. MSG is rarely listed by its common name, and frequently hides as a ‘natural flavoring’. It is far from being natural and should be avoided.

Trans and Hydrogenated Fats: Trans fats have been chemically altered through hydrogenation or cooking at high heat. These synthetic fat molecules are unnatural and cause problems at the cellular level when being used as a component for cell wall synthesis. The most common foods are deep fried, processed and commercially baked products. They are known to increase the risk of death from a heart attack by 25%.

Health minded individuals are experts at deciphering food nutrition labels. The best way to avoid these dangerous additives is to eat nothing that has more than one ingredient on the label, or has no label at all (fruits, vegetables and minimally cooked meats). Reading nutrition labels to avoid a wide array of unnatural food additives will lower your risk of chronic illness and extend your natural lifespan.


MeMe said...

Excluding certain foods especially those ones which are appealing to you can be very hard to do. It takes a lot of courage to discipline yourself by not eating those foods if you want to become healthy or shed weight.

hyperhydrosis said...

It can not be good to know that, and I know from experience that can be annoying to read labels. But you owe it to yourself and your health to put in a little more time and effort and learning. It could save your life.

ultrasonic liposuction guide said...

Food additives include preservatives, sweeteners, artificial colors and flavors as well as flavor enhancers, all designed to provide maximum calories with very little nutrition.