Bag’s, Box’s, Can’s and Jar’s
by Tammera J. Karr, PhD
For years I have repeated the line to clients about clean the “bags, boxes, cans and jars” out of your diet, and more times than not I hear the response – “but there are healthy foods in those containers”. But are they really what we think they are. Journalist Joanna Blythman published an article in the Guardian on February 21, 2015, that is a great review of why I feel we need to limit food in these containers.
“Is that feta cheese real or made up of Glucono-Delta-Lactone (a “cyclic ester of gluconic acid” that prolongs shelf life), what makes those little cakes hold together without eggs, dairy or fat –how about potato protein isolate, and then there is, Butter Buds®, described by its makers as “an enzyme-modified encapsulated butter flavor that has as much as 400 times the flavor intensity of butter”, sums it up in six words: “When technology meets nature, you save.” Really?
“Food manufacturers who need their tomato sauce to be thick enough to not leak out of its plastic carton – and just a little bit glossy, so it doesn’t look old after several days in the fridge – use Microlys®, a “cost-effective” specialty starch that gives “shiny, smooth surface and high viscosity”, or Pulpiz™, Tate & Lyle’s tomato “pulp extender”. Based on modified starch, it gives the same pulpy visual appeal as an all tomato sauce, while using 25% less tomato paste. So what is wrong with using more tomatoes?”
“Omya, “a leading global chemical distributor and producer of industrial minerals”, supply’s manufacturer in food, pet food, oleochemicals, cosmetics, detergents, cleaners, papers, adhesives, construction, plastics and industrial chemicals. Omya also sells granular onion powder, monosodium glutamate and phosphoric acid, to food manufacturers. For big companies, food processing is just another revenue stream. They experience no cognitive conflict in providing components not only for your meal, but also for your fly spray, scratch-resistant car coating, paint or glue.”
“But what about those fresh fruit bowls in the refrigerator case, surely they are real? NatureSeal, contains citric acid along with additional unnamed ingredients, adds 21 days to shelf life. Treated with NatureSeal, carrots don’t develop that telltale white that makes them look old, cut apples don’t turn brown, pears don’t become translucent, melons don’t ooze and kiwis don’t collapse into a jellied mush; a dip in NatureSeal leaves salads “appearing fresh and natural”.” Hummmmm “NatureSeal is classed as a processing aid, not an ingredient, so there’s no need to declare it on the label, no obligation to tell consumers that their “fresh” fruit salad is weeks old.”
Getting the idea? There is more to the food in the grocery store than any of us may have known, most of which comes from a chemistry set more than a farm. For many while, they may never knowingly eat food with ingredients they don’t recognize, more than likely they are consuming “wonder products” used in food manufacturing. Over the last decade, more chemicals have been introduced into foods than imaginable, introduced slowly and artfully into foods that many of us eat every day – in restaurants, cafeterias, pubs, hotels, quick stop, coffee shops and takeaways.
Today modern consumers are faced with over 6,000 food additives that are hard to avoid– flavorings, glazing agents, improves, bleaching agents and more – that are routinely employed behind the scenes of the contemporary food manufacture. That upmarket cured ham and salami, that “artisan” sourdough loaf, that “traditional” extra mature cheddar, those luxurious Belgian chocolates, those specialty coffees and miraculous probiotic drinks, those apparently inoffensive bottles of cooking oil: many have had a more intimate relationship with food manufacturing than you might think.
All of this leads us to other questions about escalating obesity, food sensitivities, cancer and brain chemistry imbalances such as ADD/ADHD, Autism, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and diabetes – is it just a matter of our genetics going haywire, humans living longer or are we destroying the creators work with man’s chemistry set?
I always was told “quality not quantity is what matters”, put the “quality in before the name goes on” has been used in marketing of goods – now I know there is no truth in advertising, but I do have a say in what goes into my body. I can choose to eat foods laced with BPA, and thousands of other chemicals or I can choose to eat the foods provided by local farmers and ranchers. Foods that start with the divine, and nature, which have been part of our history since time began.
So yes I still say you are better off if you avoid buying foods in bags, boxes, cans and jars – and Ms. Blythman has provided me with even more reasons to say it.
To Your Good Health and Information –
To read more see: Inside the Food Industry: the surprising truth about what you eat – by Joanna Blythman