Which Food Additives To Watch Out For

October 7, 2015

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First, let’s find out what a food additive actually is. Ingredients known as “food additives” can be any substance that is added to the product during its production or processing.

It can be both a manufactured product or an ingredient derived from nature.

For example, salt is used for preservation of food, while sugar is added to sweeten your food.

Additives can also be vitamins, minerals, fat replacements, artificial color, and so on. But are all of them safe?

What you should Avoid

Any food additive has to be approved by the U.S. Department of Food and Drug Administration (FDA), alongside sometimes other agencies, before it is put in your food. Still, there are some food additives you should try and avoid whenever you can:

  • salt – a diet high in salt raises your blood pressure thus increasing the risk of heart disease
  • sugar – too much sugar causes obesity, tooth decay, heart disease
  • sodium nitrite
  • saccharin
  • caffeine
  • olestra
  • acesulfame K
  • artificial coloring

Even though most of the products you can get from the store are safe, we are all different and our bodies react differently to food additives.

Kathryn M. Kolasa, PhD, RD, the professor at East Carolina University in Greenville, warns that “if you get a headache when you consume a food with the sweetener aspartame — don’t have the product. Take time to read the label and decide whether it fits in your life.”


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