Chemicals found in 1,000 processed foods may harm the immune system, according to new study

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chemicals-in-processed-foods(NaturalHealth365) You know the symptoms; we all do.  Bloating, fatigue, stomach upset, and a general feeling of blah thrown in for good measure.  It’s the after-effects of gorging on Doritos or indulging in a pint of ice cream.  Too much fat, sugar, and salt, too much high fructose corn syrup, and we’re left with a food hangover, our bodies laden with additives and preservatives and depleted of the water and enzymes needed to process them.  But the health problems associated with processed foods are far worse than bloat and a mean case of the blahs.

Processed foods account for a shocking 58% of calories in a U.S. diet.  According to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, ultra-processed food consumption is associated with an increased risk of heart disease.  But that’s only the beginning.  Research published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health suggests that chemicals found in over 1,000 processed foods may also harm the immune system.

TBHQ: Used by manufacturers to prolong a product’s shelf life and SHORTEN your life 

Ultra-processed foods are defined as “industrial formulations made with no or minimal whole foods and produced with additives such as flavorings or preservatives.”

According to the study, the chemical preservative tert-butylhydroquinone, or (TBHQ), which is found in Pop-Tarts, Cheez-It crackers, Little Debbie Swiss Rolls, and more than 1,000 other processed foods, can negatively affect the immune system, as well as polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), a group of chemicals that can leach into food from packaging.

In addition, a 2017 Trusted Source study concluded that eating foods containing additives – including processed meats – may lead to an increase in the risk of several immune conditions.  The study looked at additives such as sucralose, aspartame, carboxymethylcellulose, polysorbate-80, sodium, and carrageenan.

Big Food manufacturers have no incentive to change their formulas 

Additives like TBHQ were approved by the FDA decades ago.  The FDA allows the food and chemical industry to determine which ingredients are safe for consumption, like asking a drug cartel to regulate its product.

Sodium Nitrate.  Yellow #5.  Brominated vegetable oil.  TBQH.  Sadly, our kitchens have become as chemically-filled as a science lab.  Potentially dangerous additives need to be reviewed by the FDA, and regulatory loopholes need to be closed.

Guarding your immune system starts with choosing a carrot over a bag of industrially produced, carrot-flavored veggie puffs

Processed food makes us ill, increases the risk of heart disease, weakens the immune system, and drives the global obesity epidemic.

But if you want to improve your health and maintain a well-functioning immune system, it’s going to take more than avoiding what food journalist Michal Pollan calls “the edible food-like substances.”  You’re going to have to eat right, too.

Foods that are known to provide immune-boosting benefits include citrus fruits, foods that contain zinc – such as peas, raw cheese, organically-raised chicken breast, cruciferous vegetables, garlic, and ginger.

Finally, as a consumer, be sure to read all packaging and labels carefully.  Don’t let processed food take over your shopping cart.  Bottom line, if you’re having a hard time reading (and understanding) a food label – don’t buy it!

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