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The FDA requires all packaged foods to include a list of ingredients. But sometimes deciphering those labels seems more like a science exam than a trip to the grocery store. To help shoppers make more sense of those unpronounceable words, Natural News recently created a list of the "the food industry's most evil ingredients." Here are a few highlights:
Phosphoric acid adds a pleasant fizziness to sodas. Unfortunately its acidic qualities (the same ones that make phosphoric acid a great rust remover) have also been linked to tooth decay.
Many manufacturers add hydrochloride (also known as pyridoxine hydrochloride or thiamin hydrochloride) to boost B vitamins. According to the article, hydrochloride is synthetic and does not hold the same nutritional value as naturally-occurring B vitamins derived from foods or plants.
Acrylamides are chemicals that are created when carbohydrates are heated in the form of baking, grilling or frying. While they don't have to be listed as ingredients, some researchers claim that these chemicals are toxic and cancer-casuing.
Propylene glycol is used to make antifreeze and the fake blueberries commonly found in baked goods and cereals.
Present in far too many processed meat products, sodium nitrite is used to keep hot dogs, lunch meat, bacon and ham looking fresh and appealing. However, studies have linked this additive to deadly ailments including pancreatic cancer and brain tumors.
Also on the list are more common supermarket villians such as high fructose corn syrup, partially hydrogenated oils and sodium, which are all common in processed foods.
To avoid these potentially harmful chemicals, the best strategy is to be label-aware. If you can easily recognize a product's ingredients (with no need to break out a chemical dictionary), chances are it's going to be better for you than one that's full of unfamiliar chemical additives.