Industries use different artificial food additives to either add color, preserve the food for longer by preventing oxidation or sweeten it for a bigger market. Most of these additives are dangerous and should be avoided whenever possible. Here are the top ten dangerous food additives that should be avoided.
Avoid the following food additives:
- Sodium Nitrite – It is commonly used as a preservative in canned fishes and meats. It is hygroscopic and absorbs water hence its importance as an additive, however, sodium nitrite is known to form carcinogenic nitrosamines which may lead top cancer and should be avoided.
- Sodium chloride – I know you are wondering whether I am out of my mind but common salt used in excess is associated with excessive water retention in the blood leading to high blood pressure, heart disease, as well as kidney failure.
- Potassium Bromate – This is another common food additive that could be dangerous. It is used in making of bread rolls where it increases the volume of baked foods. It also predisposes individuals to cancers and has been banned in some countries already.
- White sugar – Sugar is commonly used as a sweetener in cereals, crackers and sauces but its excessive use is associated with tooth decay as well as an increase in weight that may contribute to obesity.
- Artificial food color – Artificial color additives used in the manufacture of juices, candy, cherries and other beverages are dangerous in themselves and have been linked to thyroid tumors and bladder cancers. Artificial food colors are also known to make ADD and ADHD symptoms worse.
- Propyl gallate – This is another preservative that is used to prevent the destruction of fats together with Butylated hydroxyanisole. It is mainly found in chewing gum, meats and other preserved foods. It is also carcinogenic and should be avoided.
- Monosodium glutamate – This is another dangerous food additive that is used to enhance flavor in soups and salads but is suspected to damage nerve cells leading to headaches and nausea in some people.
- Butylated hydroxyanisole – Known in short as BHA, this compound is commonly used as an antioxidant in various foods such as cereals, chewing gum, potato chips and vegetable oils to preserve them by preventing oxidation. It is carcinogenic.
- Olestra – This is a food additive that prevents fat absorption leading to diarrhea and excessive gas formation. It is a synthetic fat found in potato chips which may also lead to abdominal cramps and inhibits absorption of fat soluble vitamins from fruits and vegetables.
- Aspartame – It is found in low calorie foods used by those on weight loss diets such as soft drinks and desserts as an artificial sweetener instead of sugar. It contains phenylalanine which is dangerous among people suffering from phenylketonuria.