Jul 3rd, 2013 | By | Category: For Senior Women

Seniors Make Grocery Lists Carefully

We senior women (and some senior men) generally make grocery lists every week with care and attention to items that meet our unique individual tastes, desires and requirements.
What we may not be aware of is the level of contaminants and toxins in food we buy every day. Here are some items that raise questions we should consider:

  • The Center for Science in the Public Interest has identified the “rainbow of risk”, food colored with dyes made from petroleum and coal tar (YUK!). They include Yellow 5 and Red 40, among other dyes. And they are found in everyday products like breakfast cereal (Kellog’s Froot Loops and Nutri-Grain meal replacement bars). The UK has banned these dangerous dyes.
  • Brominated vegetable oil is added to drinks like Gatorade and Mountain Dew. It is a chemical found in carpet cleaners, to help keep them from catching fire. The UK has also banned this oil.
  • Arsenic is added to chicken feed to minimize parasites and make the chickens grow more rapidly. The arsenic remains in the meat of chickens, and we consume it when we eat the meat. The David Suzuki Foundation cites many references regarding the dangers of arsenic and other toxic chemicals found in the food we eat and the skin care products we use.
  • California declared potassium bromate a carcinogen in the early ’90s. Bromated flour is used in bagels, rolls, flatbreads and other bread products; it is linked to both thyroid and kidney cancer and is banned in Europe, Canada and China.
  • Some prepared foods like frozen TV dinners, boxed baked goods and breads have a chemical called azodicarbonamide in them. It is used in flour, and it is also used to make plastic products (mats and tennis shoes among the list). Take a look at this WHO paper to see what the World Health Organization has to say about this chemical that is banned in the UK, Japan and many countries in Europe.
  • We’ve talked about BHA and BHT before on this site. These preservatives are added to all kinds of prepared food and skin care products. They are banned in the UK, Japan and other European countries.

Consider Preparing Your Own Food

Stop for a moment and take a look at the list above. What do they all have in common? These toxic chemicals are all found in prepared/boxed/canned food. They are used to preserve, color, or somehow make the product more desirable to look at or to eat.

In addition to reading labels carefully to avoid potential toxins in the food you buy, it is wise to consider buying fewer prepared foods and making more of your own dishes at home. The chemicals discussed here may do serious damage to your health, and that of your loved ones.

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