Carrageenan: How a “Natural” Food Ingredient Allowed in Organics is Making us Sick

Portrait of the little girl with yogurt

Carrageenan is a popular ingredient in yogurts.

Carrageenan: Risks and Reality

By The Cornucopia Institute

This article includes excerpts from the report: Carrageenan: How a Natural Food Additive is Making Us Sick.

If it’s in our food, it must be safe to eat, right? We can say that about countless ingredients that have been proven to be unsafe. Carrageenan is one of them.

How does this happen? How is it that a harmful ingredient is allowed into—and in some cases thousands—of food items? Just look at the FDA’s recent ruling on trans fat. You’ll find trans fats in processed foods including frozen meals, margarine, desserts, even movie popcorn. People have been eating trans fats for decades, and likely suffered health issues as a result. Now, the FDA has found that trans fats are no longer generally regarded as safe and the agency is taking measures to eliminate them from the food supply.

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Migraines Linked to Certain Heavy Metals and Mineral Deficiencies

Migraines Linked to Certain Heavy Metals and Mineral Deficiencies

Discovering the cause of a migraine can be tricky. Triggers are not only difficult to find but often lead nowhere. A new study finds that certain heavy metals are linked to migraines, along with deficiences in certain minerals.

For millions of people, migraines can not only be severe, but also mysterious.

When a person tries to connect their migraine with something they might eat or do, they are looking for something typically called a trigger. This is not necessarily the cause of the migraine, but it might be related to the migraine – especially if it repeats itself prior to every migraine.

Better than a trigger is a metabolic diagnostic indicator. This could be, for example, a fasting blood sugar level, a high CRP level during a time with repeated migraines or some other diagnostic measurement.

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The Eight Most Damaging Ingredients to Watch for on Food Labels

shopping grocery cart foodProcessed foods are loaded with preservatives, artificial colors, and artificial flavorings, which is one of the reasons that I recommend avoiding them. Once you become a label reader, you’ll realize just how ubiquitous they are.

The best way to avoid toxic chemical additives is to consume only fresh whole foods. But practically speaking, this can be difficult for many people to accomplish, at least 100 percent of the time. Chances are that, despite your best efforts, you’ll have a processed food or two somewhere in your diet.

Therefore, it’s good to know which of the thousands of chemical additives are the most dangerous and should be avoided at all cost when you spot them on a food label.

An article recently posted on One Green Planet1 highlights eight particularly pernicious ingredients that you and your kids are probably eating. There seems to be good consensus about the worst of the worst, as seven of those were also dubbed the “Scary Seven”2 by Andrea Donsky of Naturally Savvy.

If you notice any of these on a food label, put it right back on the shelf! While I agree with all of One Green Planet’s choices, here I’ve selected my own “worst of the worst” ingredients found in processed foods. (more…)

The Eight Most Damaging Ingredients to Watch for on Food Labels

The Eight Most Damaging Ingredients to Watch for on Food Labels

Processed foods are loaded with preservatives, artificial colors, and artificial flavorings, which is one of the reasons that I recommend avoiding them. Once you become a label reader, you’ll realize just how ubiquitous they are.

The best way to avoid toxic chemical additives is to consume only fresh whole foods. But practically speaking, this can be difficult for many people to accomplish, at least 100 percent of the time. Chances are that, despite your best efforts, you’ll have a processed food or two somewhere in your diet.

Therefore, it’s good to know which of the thousands of chemical additives are the most dangerous and should be avoided at all cost when you spot them on a food label.

An article recently posted on One Green Planet1 highlights eight particularly pernicious ingredients that you and your kids are probably eating. There seems to be good consensus about the worst of the worst, as seven of those were also dubbed the “Scary Seven”2 by Andrea Donsky of Naturally Savvy.

If you notice any of these on a food label, put it right back on the shelf! While I agree with all of One Green Planet’s choices, here I’ve selected my own “worst of the worst” ingredients found in processed foods.

1. Artificial Sweeteners

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How Heavy Metals Are Promoting Aging

It’s been known for decades that some metals, including iron, accumulate in human tissues during aging and that toxic levels of iron have been linked to neurologic diseases, such as Parkinson’s. The fact is that all metals are toxic and the aging and diseases processes run wild without special transport and handling mechanisms to keep them from harming us. This applies just as much as essential minerals, like iron, zinc and chromium, as it does to non-essential metals and metalloids, like cadmium and arsenical compounds.

Metals can directly and indirectly damage DNA and that means an increased risk of cancer (we call this genotoxicity). There are also possibly non-genotoxic pathways, due to irritation or immuno-toxicity. (more…)

Research: Bisphenol A (BPA) Causes 100x More Harm Than Previously Imagined

Research: Bisphenol A (BPA) Causes 100x More Harm Than Previously Imagined

A new study reveals just how profoundly misled we are about Bisphenol A and its analogs: they are at least 100x more toxic than we previously imagined.

An alarming new study establishes that the commonly used chemical bisphenol A used in tens of thousands of consumer products, and its lesser known but increasingly prevalent analogs, bisphenol S and F, are several orders of magnitude more disruptive to the endocrine systems of the developing male human fetus than previous toxicological risk assessments were capable of determining.

The new study was published in the journal Fertility and Sterility and titled, “A new chapter in the bisphenol A story: bisphenol S and bisphenol F are not safe alternatives to this compound.”

As we have documented extensively in the past, the authors of the new study raise concerns that as awareness of bisphenol A’s clearly demonstrated toxicity grows and it loses favor within the marketplace, manufacturers are increasingly substituting it with chemically similar bisphenol compounds whose toxicities are less well characterized. As a result, consumers who conscientiously buy ostensibly ‘BPA-free’ products are being mislead into thinking they are bisphenol free and therefore safe.

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Consuming Canned Foods Increases Toxic Exposure 1000 Fold

Consuming Canned Foods Increases Toxic Exposure 1000 Fold

Consuming a daily serving of canned food products has a more than 1,000% increase in urinary bisphenol A (BPA) concentrations compared with when the same individuals consumed fresh food daily. The study is one of the first to quantify BPA levels in humans after ingestion of canned foods.

The findings were published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

In 2009, the North American Metal Packaging Alliance, a Washington-based trade group for can makers, said that “there is no readily available” alternative to BPA, which allows high temperature sterilization of canned food, preventing microbial contamination.

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