“Advertising is legalized lying.” – H.G. Wells
This could not possibly be more true than in today’s food industry.
The grocery store has become a virtual mine field of coded words. Packages say one thing, while covering the truth of another. They contain words like “natural”, “diet”, “healthy” & “gluten free”.
What do these terms even mean? – Lets look.
NATURAL: According to the FDA’s own website – It remains undefined and essentially means nothing. They state: “From a food science perspective, it is difficult to define a food product that is ‘natural’ because the food has probably been processed and is no longer the product of the earth. That said, FDA has not developed a definition for use of the term natural or its derivatives.”
GLUTEN FREE: So far this term is voluntary for food labeling. This new federal definition standardizes the meaning of “gluten-free” claims across the food industry. It requires that, in order to use the term “gluten-free” on its label, a food must meet all of the requirements of the definition, including that the food must contain less than 20 parts per million of gluten. So in reality, it isn’t actually free of gluten at all… just really low in gluten.
DIET: While the term DIET printed on a package to most of us is translated to mean lower calories, maybe fewer fat grams, and the implied meaning is of course “eat this and you will be thin” (though they can’t actually say that). The term DIET is another innocuous word. It’s not regulated and can be written on any foods manufacturers choose. DIET often will mean it contains a non-caloric sweetener. Though this sounds like it will lead to weight loss, artificial sweeteners are all toxic, and strangely enough actually cause you to be more hungry leading to weight gain (among a whole host of other health issues).
HEALTHY: Again this is a relative term. All items could be considered “healthy” when compared to something even less nutritious.
NATURAL FLAVORS ADDED:
We hear it and assume of course that it is from an earth-based God made source not altered through science.
The U.S. Code of Federal Regulations describes a “natural flavors” as:
“The essential oil, oleoresin, essence or extractive, protein hydrolysate, distillate, or any product of roasting, heating or enzymolysis, which contains the flavoring constituents derived from a spice, fruit or fruit juice, vegetable or vegetable juice, edible yeast, herb, bark, bud, root, leaf or any other edible portions of a plant, meat, seafood, poultry, eggs, dairy products, or fermentation products thereof, whose primary function in food is flavoring rather than nutritional.” This definition ,however, may be stretched to include items that have been processed to the point of barely resembling their original form.
What I have discovered is that you have to really be careful. Often hidden under Natural Flavors are both MSG (mono sodium glutamate) and Aspartame. MSG may be further disguised under several other names (more and more so as people begin to catch on that MSG is horrible for your health).
Some common names MSG may be hidden under additional to just “Natural Flavor”:
> Glutamic Acid (E 620)2
> Glutamate (E 620)
> Monosodium Glutamate (E 621)
> Monopotassium Glutamate (E 622)
> Calcium Glutamate (E 623)
> Monoammonium Glutamate (E 624)
> Magnesium Glutamate (E 625)
> Natrium Glutamate
> Yeast Extract
> Anything “hydrolyzed”
> Any “hydrolyzed protein”
> Calcium Caseinate
> Sodium Caseinate
> Yeast Food
> Yeast Nutrient
> Autolyzed Yeast
> Textured Protein
> Soy Protein
> Soy Protein Concentrate
> Soy Protein Isolate
> Whey Protein
> Whey Protein Concentrate
> Whey Protein Isolate
The FDA does not require manufacturers to label these foods MSG unless the “added ingredient” is 99% pure MSG.
To hear more about MSG CLICK HERE http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55mcNzWSnEM
On to ASPARTAME
Aspartame is created from the excrement of genetically modified e coli bacteria.
To get the full scoop on Aspartame as well as other artificial sweeteners please watch:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZI7_8FDzuJE Sweet Misery: A Poisoned World
Both aspartame and MSG are excitotoxins (sometimes called neurotoxins) – a class of chemicals that over stimulate neuron receptors. Neuron receptors allow brain cells to communicate with each other, but when they’re exposed to excitotoxins, they fire impulses at such a rapid rate that they become exhausted. Several hours later, these depleted neurons die.
Once inside the body aspartame changes to formaldehyde. Formaldehyde is in the same classification cyanide and arsenic. If you are eating this, you are killing brain cells and poisoning yourself unwittingly. Exitotoxins can also cross the placental barrier, so if you are consuming these while pregnant, so is your unborn child.
Possible effects of exitotoxins:
Tingling in extremities
Also please note Vegetarians and Vegans: Under Natural Flavors, there can be hidden dairy and meat products. Instead look for “non-animal” or “non-dairy” “organic” flavors.
Some other fun ingredients that fall under “natural flavor”:
Castoreum – made with secretions from anal glands of beavers and used to flavor candy, ice cream, and drinks.
L-Cysteine – Common flavor enhancer that is made from human hair or duck feathers.
And all of this is perfectly legal to market as “natural flavor”.
Think of those two words as a catch all, which translate to “we don’t have to tell you what you are eating”. These things may stem from nature originally, but after genetic modification and processing “good for you” is one of the very last things that springs to mind.
Be ware of those words… “Natural flavor” If it were truly natural, they would just list what it is.
So what are you to do? An average trip to the store has become a weird twisted version of running and navigating an ever-changing labyrinth of cloaked chemical ingredients.
1st – Ignore the front of label hype. Assume the worst – that the lovely graphic design is there to lie to you. Flip it over and read the ingredients.
2nd – If you don’t know what it is and even more so if you can’t pronounce it without getting back to phonics basics, chances are you don’t want to eat it.
3rd – Eat organic whole foods that are not processed and not prepackaged when you have that option.
4th – Just do your best. The more you pay attention the better you will eat and the better your health will be in the long run. Every positive change counts!