The importance of eating healthy foods can never be overstated. In today’s world where processed foods have occupied every space of our stomachs and the bodies of many young people, it is essential for children to learn the importance of healthy foods from an early age. Early childhood nutrition is particularly important because it prepares children to become healthy adults when they get older. Studies show that children who eat a diet high in natural foods tend to grow up to be more health-conscious and physically active as adults.
Although fruits and vegetables are a basic part of a healthy diet, you will find that there are other foods that are important to include as well. Fruits and vegetables should make up a large part of your eating plan because they are the most nutrient-dense foods available. Natural foods are not only better for you, but they are also easier to prepare and less expensive than processed foods. Uncooked fruits and vegetables are high in Vitamins A, C, F, and E.1
Along with these vitamins and minerals, natural foods are also high in fiber, magnesium, and phytochemicals. Natural foods like these are important for a healthy mind and body. In conclusion, eat a healthy diet and get rid of that high blood pressure!2
What Are the 3 Worst Ingredients in Processed Foods?
Have you ever wondered what are the worst ingredients in processed food? If you have, then you probably would like to take a minute and look at your plate. The first and foremost culprit in this category is high fructose corn syrup, which is better known as HFCS. High Fructose Corn Syrup, as well as other processed food ingredients, have been linked to an array of health problems.3
Another one of the top “worst ingredients” in processed food is butylated hydroxyanisole, better known as BHT. This ingredient is used in a number of different processed food products, including mayonnaise, salad dressing, ketchup, as well as many types of hot dog toppings.4 Although BHT is used to help keep bread fresh, another use of this ingredient is to help make meats taste better. There are even processed food products out there that have BHT as an ingredient, which makes them even worse. In fact, one of the top reasons why people get cancer today is because of the chemicals and toxins that are present in today’s meat and dairy products.5
These are just two out of the three most harmful chemicals and toxins that are present in processed food today. In order to improve your health, you need to do your homework and find out what the best healthy alternatives are. In the end, if you want to improve your overall health, you will need to eliminate all of the harmful processed food ingredients from your diet.
The Dangers of High Fructose Corn Syrup
There has been a lot of focus on high fructose corn syrup and our bodies recently. The common question is, “Is it bad or good for you?” The short answer: both. While some people argue that HFCS is bad for the body, the facts show that the dangers of this substance are more damaging than beneficial.6
HFCS, also known as fructose, is a form of high fructose corn syrup extracted from corn. The popular sweetener, sucrose, occurs naturally in fruits and is generally lower in calories than other forms of sugar. However, the health risks associated with eating too many sweetened foods are often overstated or simply ignored altogether. It is true that high levels of both sugars and fats have been associated with obesity, but many people who are considered obese are actually overweight by definition, regardless of intake.7
High fructose corn syrup is just one of the many artificial colors, flavorings, and high fructose corn syrup substitutes being used by the food industry to make processed foods more appealing to the public. Because of the fierce competition between fast-food restaurants and other food manufacturers to use the most attractive marketing strategy, food producers are quick to try whatever they can to draw in consumers. When companies add HFCS to their food products, they hope to draw in even more consumers and increase their profits.8 By using deceptive advertising and marketing practices, food manufacturers and food product manufacturers make it nearly impossible for average citizens to distinguish between the good guys and bad guys. Unfortunately, this does not work against them, as consumers tend to ignore advertisements they see that are aimed at them.9
In reality, High Fructose Corn Syrup is not the only ingredient that may have dangerous effects on our health. Food additives, preservatives, and unnecessary fillers are commonly added to foods, yet are often touted as healthy options. One of the biggest dangers of these added ingredients is that, over time, they can cause severe obesity and chronic disease.
While high fructose corn syrup has not been banned yet, many nutrition experts believe it should be. They argue that it should be banned because it causes a large spike in blood sugar levels. This spike in the levels of blood sugar makes us hungry, which leads to overeating and a variety of health problems. High Fructose Corn Syrup also contains a variety of chemicals that can affect our bodies adversely. Many nutrition experts believe that switching to a healthier alternative such as corn or rice sugar can help to reduce the dangers of High Fructose Corn Syrup.
It is important to remember that many of the foods we eat contain artificial preservatives, colorings, and artificial sweeteners. It is important to read the labels of foods and to read the nutrition information included on the label before purchasing. It is also a good idea to research obesity and diabetes in order to avoid situations that increase your risk for either health issue. High fructose corn syrup can contribute to an epidemic of diabetes and obesity, which is now one of the most widespread problems in America.
Dangers of Artificial Sweeteners in Processed Food
Artificial Sweeteners are used as a stabilizer in processed food that cannot stand alone. Processed meats contain BHA, an acid that is an essential amino acid. The problem with processed meat is that the essential amino acids are destroyed during the curing process.10
Today, the major brand names in processed food have recognized the problems associated with using artificial colors and flavors. These companies have moved away from them, but even the small name brands use these chemicals. Many people believe that food companies use additives to extend the shelf life of the processed food. However, this just prolongs the shelf life of your groceries and this isn’t what you want.11
When you go shopping for processed food, you can still get a “real” sugar that is sourced from honey, maple syrup, molasses, or a variety of other natural foods. These natural sugars don’t have a flavor of their own, like BHT, CRB, or sucrose. Natural sugars are processed similar to starch or salt – they go through a series of steps such as being heated, strained, deionized, and de-bonded before they reach your table. Artificial sweeteners are heated, treated with chemicals, and processed just like regular table sugar. So, before you head out to your local grocer to pick up dinner, take a moment to read up on the dangers of artificial sweeteners.12
Dangers of Butylated Hydroxyanisole In Processed Food
Butylated hydroxyanisole is an ingredient commonly found in processed, prepackaged, and fast food products, especially those with meat or fish as primary ingredients. It is a preservative used to preserve raw or semi-cooked meat, poultry, or fish. This compound can cause allergic reactions in people with various types of enzyme deficiencies. It has also been linked to cancer in laboratory animals and humans.
Butylated hydroxyanisole was approved for food use in the US in 1982. It was banned in some countries including the UK and New Zealand in the same year. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said that the substance “poses no unreasonable threat to the public’s health.” However, the European Union banned the ingredient in 2021 because it is believed to contribute to cancer development through toxicity.
It was listed among the eight most hazardous substances known to man in the European Commission in 2021. It was the second most dangerous to children, after only chlorine. It was listed in the same category as many toxic heavy metals such as lead and arsenic. Exposure to Butylated Hydroxyanisole in food can cause short-term irritation of the skin, stomach, and eyes, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal bloating. Long-term exposure can cause life-threatening symptoms like rashes, chest pains, confusion, trouble breathing, and coma.13
Many people have been diagnosed with cancer and other life-threatening diseases caused by Butylated Hydroxyanisole in food products. It is believed to be one of the causes of the widespread miscarriage that occurred in 1998 all over Europe. The Scottish government was forced to pay compensation to thousands of pregnant women who believed that Butylated Hydroxyanisole in food contributed to their suffering.
This compound has also been found in a wide range of cosmetics, hair care products, and even lip balm. When it is ingested, it travels through the bloodstream to the liver, which breaks it down into small particles that can enter the vital organs. It has also been shown to cross the blood-brain barrier and reach the brain. When this occurs, it causes neurological damage, which can result in severe headaches, seizures, memory loss, and mental decline. Long-term exposure can cause anemia, difficulty in concentrating, depression, bowel problems, fatigue, and even liver disease.
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2 “What are vitamins, and how do they work? – Medical News Today.” 9 Jan. 2020, https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/195878 Accessed 3 Sep. 2021.
3 “6 Reasons Why High-Fructose Corn Syrup Is Bad for You – Healthline.” 27 Sep. 2019, https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/why-high-fructose-corn-syrup-is-bad Accessed 3 Sep. 2021.
4 “The Dirty Dozen: BHA and BHT – David Suzuki Foundation.” https://davidsuzuki.org/queen-of-green/dirty-dozen-bha-bht/ Accessed 3 Sep. 2021.
5 “Butylated hydroxyanisole ≥98.5% | 25013-16-5 – Sigma-Aldrich.” https://www.sigmaaldrich.com/US/en/product/aldrich/b1253 Accessed 3 Sep. 2021.
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11 “Artificial sweeteners and other sugar substitutes – Mayo Clinic.” https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/artificial-sweeteners/art-20046936 Accessed 3 Sep. 2021.
12 “The Truth on Artificial Sweeteners – WebMD.” https://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/features/truth-artificial-sweeteners Accessed 3 Sep. 2021.
13 “Butylated Hydroxyanisole – an overview | ScienceDirect Topics.” https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/medicine-and-dentistry/butylated-hydroxyanisole Accessed 3 Sep. 2021.