We live in the future.
Electric cars drive themselves around on freeways. Products we use and love are pushed out of factories by the millions. An infinite well of information is available to us on the internet, which is growing every day. On the surface, everything can seem quite idealistic. Life is easier than it has ever been – even kings of old didn’t have a tenth of the luxuries most people enjoy today.
However, there is often a dark side to humanity’s continued quest to conquer our future. Turns out, progress and efficiency aren’t always positive things. One area humans have managed to screw things up is food. The food we eat is mass-produced on an unprecedented scale in this modern world, and the drive to produce food as cheaply and quickly as possible has led to some disastrous results.
There are certain manufactured items that are literally pumped full of artificial chemicals and preservatives. In some cases, these additives are precisely and intentionally included to create cravings and addictions (take caffeine in soda, for example). These artificial extras can wreak havoc on your body.
In this article we will take a look at three foods that you should avoid, and why. Unfortunately, all three of these foods have become mainstream commodities.
You’ve seen these before.
They’re an American staple: the single-serve slice of cheese. Perfect for a kid’s lunchbox or melting on top of a hamburger. They taste pretty good too. Dangerously good.
Cheese items such as these are labeled as “processed”, and are only required to have 51% cheese in the ingredients. What is the other 49%? Depending on the manufacturer, it’s a mixture of emulsifiers, acids, artificial coloring, salt, and mold inhibitors. Yikes.
While these additives may help the food last for months and turn a nice yellow color, none of them belong in your body. Do you know what potassium sorbate and sodium tartrate are? Unless you’re an organic chemist, probably not. In that case, maybe you should avoid ingesting them.
Many cheese products these days advertise that they are “Made with real cheese!”.
Instead of seeing this as an incentive to buy, consider it a warning flag. Sure, a little bit of natural ingredients is better than none. You should still take the time to read the nutrition facts and ingredient list to determine if its cheese worth eating.
An item that is 51% cheese barely deserves the title of ‘cheese’. If you’re going to eat cheese, make sure it is the real deal from now on.
Did you know that flour is not naturally white? It makes sense if you think about it. Flour is made from grains, all of which are various shades of brown or tan. How in the world does flour become white, and why is white flour so popular today?
The snowy, powdery substance we all have used at some point in our baking career is called ‘refined flour’. The process of refining flour includes bleaching, fumigation, and adding dozens of different chemicals like polyexy ethylene monostrate. The result? Flour that is stripped of all its nutritional value, just as it has been stripped of all color. Refined flour has less fiber in it, and thus feels less satisfying to eat. This, of course, is very good for the people making it. The more we eat, the richer they get.
Bread is the main way most people consume flour.
White bread made from white flour has become so common that it’s easy to see it as the norm. Whether it’s the bread sticks our favorite restaurant brings out, the crust on our pizza, or the slices on our sandwich, white bread has absolutely taken over.
Don’t let white bread’s everyday presence fool you. Like the inexplicably popular school punk, it’s better off avoided. Opt for whole-grain and whole-wheat choices whenever possible, and your body will thank you.
Chips seem to be one of those things that just end up in your shopping cart. You make your way to the registers and suddenly realize you’ve thrown two bags of Doritos in the basket sometime during your journey through the aisles. Oh well, you think. Chips are cheap, and they’re a great snack whether on the go or at home. A few movie nights and hundreds of calories later, the chips are gone – until the next grocery run.
It would be great if snack chips were healthy.
But… they’re not. At all. Chips are completely empty calories, meaning they don’t provide any vitamins/minerals/nutrients to your system. When you choose to eat chips over other healthy tidbits, you are displacing all the benefits your body would have gotten with thin wafers of fat and salt.
Just like processed cheese and white flour, the manufacturing method of chips includes adding tons of chemicals. How does a potato actually go from a brown spud to a potato chip? It’s not a simple action of slicing and frying, which is what many manufacturers want you to believe. In reality, the potato is often turned into a paste and mixed with yeasts, acids, and enzymes before being smeared into thin discs and dumped in a fryer. The process for corn chips can be equally terrifying.
Next time you find a bag of chips in your cart, take it back to the chip aisle or tell the cashier you decided not to get it. There are a few chips you can buy that are more health-focused. Try these out instead if you absolutely can’t resist the satisfying crunch of a chip.
Going along with the crowd is regularly a recipe for disaster. Just because foods like these three are so common does not mean you should be eating them. Be mindful about the fuel you put in your body, because it will always affect you for better or for worse.