Do You Know What Ingredients are in Your Processed Foods?

I came across an article on Huffington and I was just absolutely disgusted. It distilled in me why I stay away from processed foods and started to eat clean. I really didn’t realize what ingredients were in my food, and that’s scary. Maybe this will serve as an eye opener for all of you, who tend to turn to processed food as a solution to feed your hunger. Remember there are ALWAYS alternatives and healthier ones in fact!

If you care where your health is going and will be in the years to come, get educated on what you’re putting in your mouth and stomach. You should be able to answer, what the ingredients are in your food and more times than none you don’t know or can’t pronounce them.

Check out below some of the odd/gross ingredients you will find in your food and how its being used.

Wondering what Duck feathers have to do with this? Keep reading…

Castoreum

What it is: Extract from beaver perineal glands

Where you’ll find it: “Natural flavoring is defined by the FDA as any substance extracted, distilled or otherwise derived from ‘natural’ materials, such as plant or animal matter,” Bradley explains. “In the case of strawberry and raspberry flavorings, some natural berry flavors may actually be enhanced by castoreum.” It’s also sometimes taken (intentionally) in supplement form

Ammonium Sulfate

What it is: A salt compound comprised of nitrogen

Where you’ll find it: In some fertilizers — and in some breads, like the rolls at Subway.

Chemicals with ammonia are typically added to neutralize a food that’s too acidic, says Doyle, which can affect texture. It’s safe in the amounts it is used in foods, he says, but admits it will certainly be startling to many people, who may only be familiar with it as a heavy-duty cleaner.

L-Cysteine

What it is: An amino acid made from human hair or duck feathers

Where you’ll find it: Used as a dough conditioner in some bread products, Bradley says, which can improve the texture and feel of products, as well as prolong their shelf life.

Feathers and hair are readily-available waste products that would cost more money to dispose of, says Doyle, and since both are protein, they can be digested down to amino acids.

Silicon Dioxide

What it is: Also known as silica, it’s most often present as quartz or sand

Where you’ll find it: Various fast food options, like Wendy’s chili and Taco Bell’s meat filling.

It’s added to foods as an anti-caking agent, to keep them from clumping, explains Doyle.

Titanium Dioxide

What it is: A chemical related to the mined metallic element titanium, according to Rodale

Where you’ll find it: Sunscreen. It’s a UV light absorber, says Doyle, but also works as a lightener in foods. It’s often used to whiten skim milk, which, after the fat is removed, can appear slightly blue, he says. It may also be used in salad dressings, coffee creamers and frosting, according to Men’s Health.

Azodicarbonamide

What it is: A processing agent

Where you’ll find it: Plastics, like yoga mats and the soles of your shoes, according to TIME‘s Healthland — as well as hamburger buns.

Shellac

What it is: Secretions from a bug native to Thailand, Health.com reports

Where you’ll find it: Coating your favorite shiny sweets, like jelly beans. Look for it on ingredients lists as “confectioner’s glaze.”

Bone Char

What it is: Charred cattle bones

Where you’ll find it: While it’s used less and less in foods these days, says Bradley, it was historically used to make sugar appear whiter and more pure.

Cellulose

What it is: Wood pulp

Where you’ll find it: In shredded cheese, salad dressings, chocolate milk and more, according to the Wall Street Journal. It’s added to foods to keep them from clumping by blocking moisture, and can thicken foods in the pace of oil or flour, which cost more.

 

 

I’d love to know if after reading this you are going to take an active roll in cleaning up your eating habits? Let me know with a comment below!

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