Do You Want Some Soap with that Latté? | Rodale Wellness

Another reason to get to know your food (and skincare!) and how it’s made –

There’s a good chance that along with your almond milk latté, energy bar, and even your slice of gluten-free bread today, you have unknowingly ingested an emulsifying agent, many of which have detergent-like properties, far from fortifying and potentially health reducing.

To serve an insatiable commercial demand for convenience and specialty foods that stay fresher longer, scientists have created a plethora of novel food products relying on a group of compounds called emulsifiers to blend ingredients that don’t traditionally want to stick together. They are crucial if you’re in the business of making products gluten-free, dairy-free, or low fat, as emulsifiers help “glue” and combine ingredients.

Source: Do You Want Some Soap with that Latté? | Rodale Wellness

The unpalatable truth about ready meals | Daily Mail Online

Why we’re big about reading ingredients and getting to know the products you buy! –

CHEAP CUTS BULKED UP WITH MEAT GLUE

While luxury brands offer select cuts of beef, tender lamb and free-range chicken, basic ready meals are packed with low-grade meats and cheap offcuts. These are often bulked out in one of two ways. The first is transglutaminase, which has the stomach-churning nickname ‘meat glue’, a super-strength enzyme which bonds slabs of raw meat together into one, uniform joint. The second is collagen, a protein extracted from butchered animal carcasses, which is processed into a powder. Combined with water, this becomes bouncy and glutinous, acting just like meat.

A chicken dinner may contain just 25 per cent meat — and even this may have been bulked out with water, oil, sugar and starch. Paul Dobson, professor for business strategy and public policy at the University of East Anglia, suspects the 2013 horsemeat scandal — in which horse DNA was detected in cheap, frozen ready meals — has made customers more discerning. However, he warns: ‘The fact that consumers did not distinguish the taste of horse from beef says a lot about how far unscrupulous producers might be able to go to mislead consumers.’

AS MUCH SUGAR AS A CAN OF COLA

Luxury ready meals may boast better meat (and higher price tags) — but they’re often far from healthy. A 2015 study analysed microwave dinners from five UK supermarkets and found those labelled ‘finest’ or ‘extra special’ contained up to twice as much saturated fat, salt and sugar as ‘basics’ or ‘value’ varieties.

Source: The unpalatable truth about ready meals | Daily Mail Online

Do DHA Supplements Make Babies Smarter? – The New York Times

When it comes to ingredients, getting to know what goes into our food is worth the time! –

Peruse the infant formula aisle, or check out the options for prenatal nutritional supplements, and you’ll find that nearly all these products boast a “brain nourishing” omega-3 fatty acid called DHA. But despite decades of research, it’s still not clear that DHA in formula boosts brain health in babies, or that mothers need to go out of their way to take DHA supplements.

A systematic review of studies published this month by the Cochrane Collaboration concluded there was no clear evidence that formula supplementation with DHA, or docosahexaenoic acid, a nutrient found mainly in fish and fish oil, improves infant brain development. At the same time, it found no harm from adding the nutrient. The findings are consistent with a review of the effects of omega-3 supplements in pregnancy and infancy published by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality last fall that found little evidence of benefit.

Source: Do DHA Supplements Make Babies Smarter? – The New York Times

43% of Products Marketed to Kids are Artificially Dyed, Study Finds | Center for Science in the Public Interest

43% of Products Marketed to Kids are Artificially Dyed, Study Finds | Center for Science in the Public Interest

Why keeping it natural makes the most sense! –

Candies marketed to kids had the highest proportion of products with artificial dyes (96 percent) followed by fruit-flavored snacks (95 percent), drink mixes and powders (90 percent), and frozen breakfast foods (86 percent). Researchers at the University of North Carolina Asheville catalogued foods, as well as tooth pastes, mouthwashes, and vitamins, in one large supermarket in that state, looking for cartoons, licensed characters, kid-oriented prizes, and other cues that the products were marketed to chil

Source: 43% of Products Marketed to Kids are Artificially Dyed, Study Finds | Center for Science in the Public Interest

India food watchdog for ban on ‘toxic bread’ – BBC News

India food watchdog for ban on ‘toxic bread’ – BBC News

Yikes! Why we need to pay attention to what goes into what we put into our bellies (and bodies!) –

India’s food watchdog has recommended a ban on the use of a cancer-causing chemical in bakery products.The Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) took the decision after a study found residues of potassium bromate in 84% of samples collected in Delhi.

The study said the chemical “can cause cancer” and should be banned. The FSSAI said the health ministry would soon issue a formal notification to announce the ban.”

Potassium bromate is one of 11,000 food additives that are allowed in food business. After careful consideration, the FSSAI has decided to remove potassium bromate from the list of permissible additives,” PTI news agency quoted FSSAI chief Pawan Kumar Agarwal as saying.

Delhi-based environmental think-tank Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), which conducted the study, welcomed the decision but said it was expecting the government to also ban potassium iodate, another toxic chemical, in bakery products.

Both the chemicals are banned in many countries, but India continues to allow their use in bakeries.The CSE had collected 38 bread and bakery samples from retail stores, bakeries and fast-food shops in Delhi for its study.”More than 84% of samples tested were found to contain potassium bromate and/or iodate,” the study said.

Source: India food watchdog for ban on ‘toxic bread’ – BBC News