Food additives are substances added to food products to give them the desired properties, for example, a certain aroma (flavorings), color (dyes), shelf life (preservatives), taste, consistency. It is already difficult for a person to imagine his food without food additives, but in addition to the special taste, they pose a certain danger to health.
A number of studies have been carried out on animals, during which the properties of food additives have been analyzed. It is difficult to say how harmful they will be to humans, but the fact that most of these supplements are indeed unhealthy and may even cause cancer is thought provoking.
Sodium nitrite. This supplement is the most dangerous. And it is used in the production of meat products, in particular, sausages, ham, bacon, corned beef. It is with the help of sodium nitrite that a "natural" red color is provided, as well as a meaty taste. Yes, the supplement prevents the growth of bacteria, but it can cause cancer. Under high temperature conditions, such as grilling, sodium nitrite becomes reactive and can cause cancer.
Butyloxyanisole. This antioxidant keeps fats and oils from becoming rancid and is used to prevent oxidative processes in foods. This additive can be found in a wide variety of foods, from chips to chewing gum. But, like sodium nitrite, butyloxyanisole can cause cancer. After all, this substance is unstable, and, being moreover chemically active, it can cause cancer.
Propyl gallate. The properties of this supplement are similar to the previous one, they are even used together to preserve foods. It is not yet clear whether propyl gallate influences the occurrence of cancerous tumors, but experts advise avoiding products that contain this antioxidant.
Monosodium glutamate. This amino acid is responsible for enhancing taste sensations by increasing the sensitivity of the tongue receptors. Usually monosodium glutamate is used as an additive to salad dressings, chips, frozen soups and convenience foods, restaurant dishes. Humans sometimes even react to this substance with headaches and nausea, and animal studies have shown possible damage to nerve cells by the addition. Experts recommend adding a little common salt to food instead of MSG, as the constant stimulation of taste sensations can lead to the fact that ordinary food already seems tasteless over time.
Trans fats. Eating large amounts of them can lead to heart disease, which means the supplement is harmful. It increases the risk of heart stroke, vascular disease, and kidney failure. It is estimated that there should be no more than 2 grams of trans fats in the daily diet. Today, more and more manufacturers refuse to use this additive, but in most fast food chains it is used in considerable volume.
Aspartame. This substance is used in the preparation of a number of diet foods - carbonated and mixed drinks and low-calorie desserts. Aspartame is used instead of sugar as an alternative sweetener. The safety of this substance, which is a combination of methanol and two amino acids, would seem to have been proven by hundreds of scientific studies. However, some experts refer to studies of aspartame that were carried out on animals in the period 1970-2007. In the course of experiments, the connection between the use of the substance and the occurrence of cancer was proved. Aspartame is also dangerous for those with phenylketonuria, since phenylalanine is part of the substance.
Acesulfame potassium. This sweetener appeared relatively recently, the American Food and Drug Administration approved it for use in carbonated drinks only in 1998. However, this additive is also used in the manufacture of gelatinous desserts, chewing gum and baked goods. After all, sugar is 200 times inferior in sweetness to acesulfame potassium! Although the overall harmfulness of this supplement has yet to be proven, there is emerging evidence that it can cause cancer as well.
Food colorings. Almost all food colors hazardous to health have long been banned, but at least five types of them are used, which have shown a connection in animals with the occurrence of cancer. Experts advise, however, to try to avoid foods with food coloring. Although most of them are harmless, made from natural ingredients, some dyes are still quite dangerous chemical compounds. Today, harmful food colors are still used in baked goods, candy, sauces, gelatine, and beverages.
Olestra. This substance is intended to replace fat, it has zero calories, because of this, it passes through the entire digestive tract without being absorbed. But olestra inhibits the absorption of not only fats, but also some vitamins, as well as nutrients involved in protecting the body from heart disease and cancer.
Potassium bromate. Until now, potassium bromate is used in baking bread, giving it splendor. In the process of baking, the additive almost instantly becomes safe for humans, but it causes cancer in animals. And a small amount of potassium bromate in bread increases the risk of cancer in humans. In the United States, in some states, such as California, authorities require manufacturers to warn on labels about the use of such a supplement and the fact that it can cause cancer.
White sugar. Some fruits and vegetables do contain sugar, but you should avoid it in cereals, baked goods, crackers sauces, and the like. This is because eating large amounts of white sugar impairs digestion. Experts believe that sugar should not be more than 10% of the daily calorie intake, but modern Americans have this figure in the range of 20-40%. These numbers, in addition to poor digestion, lead to inevitable problems with excess weight.
Sodium chloride. This name hides the well-known salt, which we add to almost all dishes. However, salt is also potentially hazardous to health. The body really needs a small amount of it, but excessive consumption can lead to malfunctions in the cardiovascular system, kidney function will worsen, blood pressure will jump, and the risk of heart stroke will increase.