ADSactly Awareness - Why There Are Hidden Harmful Chemicals In Your Food 2
WHY THERE ARE HIDDEN HARMFUL CHEMICALS IN OUR FOOD 2
In the first article, I mentioned that certain harmful substances are present in our food in the form of food preservatives, food additives and food contaminants. The reason for this awareness about food is to help the rate at which people, consume chemicals in food. There is a toxic level for each food substance, this means there is a level to which we can consume some chemicals, before it begins to affect our body system negatively. Since we can not always check toxic levels, we can learn about some chemicals in foods and reduce our intake of such food substances or avoid them. Lets read more about other food additives, below are some other food additives present in food :
These are substances or chemicals added to food to prevent lumps in them. You know how you can easily get pissed if you notice your salt, flour or any powdery food substance caking after a while, so anti- caking agents is the chemical remedy for this. There are two types of anti-caking agents, artificial and natural anticaking agents. An example of a natural anti- caking agent is kaolin (E559). However, most anti-caking agents are made from synthetic substances such as silicon dioxide or magnesium and calcium stearates . For instance, Calcium silicate (CaSiO3), is a common anti-caking agent which is added to table salt to of course prevent it from lumps. So in essence, packaged salts and some other powdery food substances may not necessarily be from natural sources only. Some anti-caking agents are however harmful in large doses.
E515(potassium sulphate) an anti-caking agent used in beer, pharmaceuticals and salt substitutes is known to cause gastrointestinal bleeding, in large doses.
Food emulsifiers are substances that act as an interface between components of food like water and oil. During food manufacturing, parts of food have to mix without separation, parts of food especially oil, fat and water, this is why emulsifiers are used. Some examples of emulsifiers are Egg Yolk, lecithin, Soy lecithin, PolyGlycerol Ester (PGE), Sorbitan Ester (SOE), Monoglyceride (MG), Acetylated Monoglyceride (AMG) Lactylated Monoglyceride (LMG).
Emulsifiers found in a variety of processed foods in large quantities can damage the intestine, leading to inflammation or tissue damage.
Humectants are food additives that act as moisturizers by attracting water into a food product. They are often used to prevent food substances from drying out. Sorbitol and citric acid synthesized from dextrose are often used as humectants.
However if more than 15 grams per serving is consumed, side effects which includes abdominal cramping, diarrhea or abdominal bloating may occur. You see why you need to reduce taking soda and nutrition bars?
Stabilizers are food additives that help food substances retain their physical characteristics when added to food. When added to food items, they smoothen the texture of the food & give a definite body to the food. Food stabilizers are added in relatively small amount which supports the effect of emulsifiers by holding together ingredients bound by emulsifiers. Examples include Alginic acid,Carrageenan,gelatin,Pectin or calcium chloride are also used as food stabilizers in dairy products.
Side effects however, result from large doses, they include flatulence, bloating and nausea.
Stabilizers can also be present as gluten in the body. Gluten is wheat protein and wheat protein is known to be responsible for negative effects and intolerance in the health of most people.
Nutrient-drug interactions also occur in consumers of gluten stabilizers using drugs such as anticoagulants, anti biotics and anti-hypertensive drugs. So always confirm with your doctor before using drugs, sometimes what is contained in your diet may interfere with your drugs.
ARTIFICIAL SWEETNERS FOR EXAMPLE ASPARTAME AND SACCHARIN.
These sweetners are usually found in sugar free products but their side effects are worse than that of sugar.
They are regarded as carcinogens. carcinogens mean that they can lead to cancer.They are neurotoxic as well, this means that they can affect the memory, cause short term loss or total loss of memory .They are found in sugar-free gum, table top sweetners, some toothpaste. Saccharins have been banned and campaigned against over the years.
This is a rather common food additive which is dangerous to the health as well,it is an amino acid used to enhance and increase flavours especially in the production of spices. Regular consumption of this may however result in eye problems, weight gain or even depression . This additive is found in seasonings all over the world and food spices.
Headache, numbness, chest pain and sweating may be experienced after eating foods containing MSG in large doses.
It is therefore best to know what foods contain MSG so you can reduce your exposure. Same goes for other food additives.
This is a coloring agent and can be sourced by heating sugar at high temperature for a while. Caramel sounds harmless but unfortunately It has been linked to vitamin b6 deficiencies and is linked even to cancer. Caramel is found in chocolates,biscuits and even candies.
Truly some of these chemicals and additives mentioned above can be beneficial, but have you weighed in on how much hidden and slow damages this is causing at the same time? You may not be told this by manufacturing companies, but it is rather essential that you know what the food substance you are ingesting contains and if you can, reduce your daily intake of packaged foods or canned food substances.
Another avenue harmful substances can get into food is through food contaminants.Yes, food sometimes gets contaminated through its journey from farm to fork.
WHAT ARE FOOD CONTAMINANTS?
Food contaminants are substances which most times accidentally find their way into food products. It could be from the farm, while raw materials are transported,during processing, or while finished products are transported. Contaminants can be from the soil or car exhausts which contains carbon or metals.
Herbicides and pesticides are also contamination sources. People can be exposed to metals such as mercury, arsenic, cadmium, or lead by ingesting contaminated food and its accumulation in the body over time can be harmful.
Food poisoning is a repercussion of food contaminants, it is a case that can be caused by eating food or drinks contaminated with harmful bacteria or eating food contaminated with chemicals called toxins.
Food poisoning can also occur either by ingesting contaminants as mentioned above or by ingesting chemical toxins. Examples of such toxin is afflatoxins found in grains.
You know you have ingested contaminants if after eating you begin to feel stomach upset, nauseated , fever and the urge to vomit.
Although, food manufacturing industries however try to avoid contaminants by using different safety measures such as, metal detectors, grain destoners, afflatoxins detectors and so on but sometimes, marketing conditions or the conditions in which food products are stored are favorable for the infestation of contaminants.
The worst part is that, you may never be able to tell that a food product is contaminated until you have opened it or even ingested it. We have to be vigilant with food and be label aware. Harmful substances in foods may not come as harmful, some come as normal ingredients and as part of the food. Some contaminants can not be seen with the physical eyes. It is important to be aware of the components of foods before we consume it, if there are particular parts of the ingredient label we do not understand or are not sure of we should avoid such food.
I'm personally a picky eater and I like to know what is in a food substance before I eat it, my friends think I'm weird when I sometimes inspect food, but in a way weird is good.
Other substances which are secretly harmful are added to our foods in a bid to improve its quality,they will be mentioned in my next article. Remember to always check the ingredient label and eat safe!
Authored by: @ponmile
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