Sunday, August 5, 2012

6 Ingredients You May Not Want in Your Food

We try to eat pretty health and be aware of what goes into our meals.  Occasionally we eat something "junkie" like take-out when I hurt myself but never fast-food.  We don't buy chips or dips of any kind.  I was pretty shocked when I read this article in the Huffington Post so I thought I'd share.  I'd like to know what you think!

1. TBHQ, A.K.A: Butane

Turns out butane isn't just for lighters anymore - it's also an artificial antioxidant that they put it in chicken nuggets to keep them "fresh" tasting. So instead of your chicken nuggets being fresh, butane keeps them "fresh." Eating butane probably wasn't what you had in mind last time you lit up, got the munchies, and ordered those nuggets. Try homemade chicken wings instead, for fuel-free food. 

Found in: Frozen, packaged or pre-made processed foods with long shelf lives such as frozen meals, crackers, chips, cereal bars and fast food.

2. Estrogen
Regular milk is full of hormones used by the milk industry to keep the cows knocked up and lactating all year round. Sound gross? It is. So when you drink regular milk you take a shot of hormones with it. And all you wanted was a bowl of cereal. 

Found in: All non-organic dairy, so organic is recommended.

3. Spinach Dust
Think that green sheen on your veggie snacks is giving you your daily serving of vegetables? Think again. That's just powdered spinach dust, which is spinach that has been dehydrated and sucked dry of its nutritional value. So the upshot is that green sheen is about as nutritious as actual dust.

Found in: "Healthier" vegetable flavored snack foods.

4. Propylene Glycol, A.K.A: antifreeze 
Antifreeze is used in cars, pills, cosmetics, deodorant, moisturizer... And, in a way, food! It keeps your car from freezing over, your moisturizer moist, and your fat-free cookie dough ice cream creamy, smooth and juicy. If it's good enough for your SUV it's good enough to eat, right? Right?? Right???

Found in: Cake mix, salad dressings, low-fat ice creams and dog food.

5. Wood Pulp: Vanillin
Vanillin, which is a byproduct of the pulp industry, is used as an artificial vanilla flavor. Ester of wood resin, which comes from pine stumps, is in citrus-flavored sodas to keep the citrus flavor evenly distributed through the can.

Found in: Artificially flavored yogurt, baked goods, candy and sodas

6. Castoreum
Castoreum comes out of a beaver's behind - it's extracted from their anal glands and is used to make artificial raspberry flavoring. Try not to think about that next time you order the diet raspberry tea.

Found in: Artificially raspberry flavored products such as cheap ice cream, Jell-O, candy, fruit-flavored drinks, teas and yogurts.

Are you shocked?  What are your thoughts on these additives?  

I almost forgot...
I'll be announcing the details of my very first giveaway this Friday at noon.  
Don't worry, none of these nasty ingredients are in my giveaway items.  


Nicole @WonkyW said...

This kind of stuff scares the Heck out of me! Processed food is nothing but junk (why does some of it taste so good?) :)

A.N. Lewis said...

Makes me take a second look at some of the things I buy

Christin@fortmillscliving said...

Gross! That beaver one is really disturbing and I don't think I'll let my daughter eat her beloved chicken nuggets anymore. Thanks for sharing!

Mary Smith said...

Thanks for your comments ladies! The beaver stuff...gross! I'll definitely re-think a few of my store-bought items!

Gail @ said...

Oh, my, that last one was the worst. definitely won't be getting raspberry flavored anything again! Thanks for the info. Gail (

Anonymous said...

Since I'm learning that most of the food we eat isn't real food, this little list doesn't surprise me too much, though it is shocking.

KG said...

Following by email - from Blog Hop Social!

OMG! This is so gross. I can't believe the things they put in food.

Becca said...

Oh my goodness. These are reasons I want to become more and more healthy in the way I eat!! Thanks for sharing! Would you care to share this post at my Healthy Tuesday hop?

Mary Smith said...

Yep, for all you raspberry flavor lovers out there...The ingredients list probably won't say Castoreum. It probably says "natural flavor" cuz after all, anal gland extract is natural. GROSS!

Sarah @ Natures Nurture said...

Eww, eww, and more eww! Thanks for sharing this. We've almost completely cut out all junk food and snacks and have gone just about 100% homemade, but there's always those times when you're on the road, and just give in for the sake of convenience... Will definitely keep this list handy.

That beaver one is just disgusting. And a huge LOL at your commentary on the chicken nuggets! :D

Thanks for linking up at Tiny Tip Tuesday! Would be great if you could include a link back to our site so others can join in ;)

Vicki Sloan said...

Estrogen is a natural product of cows. They produce it just as we(women) do. Check the difference in estrogen between cow milk and soy milk.

Mary Smith said...

Vickie, you make a great point. Soy is another nasty animal. However, I believe the article refers to the added hormones that the commercial dairy industry gives to their cows to increase milk production.
I will defer to Donna at Midlife Farmwife who is an Organic Dairy Farmer and also raises Red Wattles (not sure on the spelling) Check out her link on the sidebar. She has LOTS of useful information on the subject.

Elsa said...

This is so funny! I just brewed myself a cup of raspberry herbal tea before reading your post, and haven't drunk it yet. Ta-da! "Artificial raspberry flavor!" You saved me!

Unknown said...

too shocked reading this!
oh my!!!