Macaroni and Cheese is loaded with a harmful food additive, report finds
(NaturalHealth365) Toxic cheese?! That’s right, before you buy your food at the local supermarket – read this important news.
We’ve all heard this story before: Conventional (highly processed) foods with a long and highly suspicious shelf life contain harmful additives that are X, Y, or Z: X being carcinogenic, Y being hormone-disrupting, and Z being gut-destroying – to name just a few examples.
Now, new research shows that phthalates, which are one of the more usual suspects of artificially-enhanced products (and reported about here on NaturalHealth365), have been found in nearly ALL of the samples of a popular kids’ food tested by a food safety organization.
Study confirms: Store-bought mac n’ cheese products loaded with harmful ‘indirect’ food additive
If you look at the standard ingredients list of your typical mac n’ cheese product (which are heavily marketed to children on everything from television to social media), you’ll probably struggle to find mostly identifiable “foods.”
The thing is, you won’t see phthalates listed on the label. This is because phthalates are considered an “indirect” food additive, meaning they get there by accident.
Unfortunately, the new analysis from the Coalition for Safer Food Processing and Packaging found that of 30 popular mac n’ cheese products assessed, all but ONE of them tested positive for phthalates.
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It’s no surprise, given that phalates are predominant in things like food package coatings, plastic food containers, coatings, printing inks, processed foods, and many other household and and personal care products. These and other harmful compounds, like bisphenol A (BPA) and BPA substitutes, easily and routinely leech into our food and beverages – and thereby get into our bodies where they can lead to significant health problems over time.
Why are phthalates used in the first place? Turns out these chemicals are effective binding agents that help plastic stay soft and pliable. But, no doubt: once you realize the kind of problems they can cause, you’ll be inspired to do what you can to minimize your exposure to these compounds.
Previous research shows conventionally-raised meats and cheese are a leading dietary source of phthalates
A review published in a 2014 edition of the journal Environmental Health determined that dairy, along with “discretionary fats” and meats, are among the highest sources of these harmful man-made chemicals.
How are they harmful? For one thing, the authors of this 2014 review point out that phthatlates are “endocrine-disrupting,” meaning they have the potential to throw off hormone balance.
This is problematic for anybody – especially infants and children (you know, the primary market for mac n’ cheese). Past data has shown that a prenatal exposure to phthalates is associated with negative changes in infant hormone profiles, child neurobehavioral outcomes, and even timing of labor.
As for the effect on adults, multiple studies suggest that phthalate exposure is associated with everything from decreased semen production in men, to endrometriosis in women, to increased waist circumference and BMI in all adults.
Sadly, phalate exposure is not a small-scale problem. Data has revealed that as much as 90% of the US population test positive for metabolic biomarkers of phthalates. And the bait-and-switch methods aren’t working, either: the state of California recently recognized a phthlate substitute as carcinogenic.
Unfortunately, it’s probably not possible to completely eliminate your exposure to this harmful “accidental” food additive. But you can make several choices as an informed consumer – such as choosing natural, organic, and ethically-raised meats, dairy, and produce and avoiding heavily processed foods at all costs – in order to drastically reduce your risk.
Sources for this article include:
Food & Nutrition
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