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3 Shocking Sources for Modern Food Additives

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All sorts of preservatives and flavour enhancers are added to foods these days. The problem is, not many people know where these ingredients come from.

1) Azodicarbonide

Azodicarbonide is a food additive that is used primarily as a flour enhancer, and it ends up in many baked goods. Azodicarbonide is a synthetic molecule that was originally developed to be used in the manufacturing of sponge-like plastics and synthetic leather. Such as yoga mats and the soles of shoes. We wonder what inspired people to use this compound in industrial bread production.

McDonalds weathered a media storm after it was revealed that their McRib bun contained the compound. We are not certain what the side-effects of consuming a synthetic compound used in plastic manufacturing would be, but we do know that the compound is banned for use in food products in Australia and Europe.

2) L-Cysteine

L-Cysteine is used extensively as a food flavour enhancer. It is primarily used as a meat flavour enhancer, and it is in pretty much all the meat you buy at the store, along with many other high-protein foods. It is also used in baking products as a “conditioner”. The chemical is considered digestible.

Here is where it gets strange – L-Cysteine is made primarily from hair and feathers, and yes, this includes human hair. Actually, a manager at one company reported that their L-Cysteine is derived mostly from human hair.

3) Carmine

Carmine is basically food colouring. It is used to make normally colourless or ugly foods pretty with a deep red colouring.

What you might not know - Carmine is made by squishing beetles. The Cochinea beetle to be exact.  We are going to guess that it might be slightly healthier than synthetic food colourings because it is made naturally. We don’t know for certain, but it sounds right.


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