The food products you buy at the store generally contain additional ingredients. We decided to find out what our favorite food really contains.
The information we provide below does not mean that you should never eat any of these products, but it does show that we must control the amount we consume.
This is especially important when it comes to children. Read till the end to get the best advice for choosing food products.
The concentrate here is a puree that contains tomato and cornstarch. The amount of tomato in the concentrate depends on the quality of the ketchup and varies between 6% and 10%.
When the tomato sauce is made, corn syrup is usually added, which helps preserve it and make it sticky.
Tip: When choosing ketchup, go for the best quality.
The meat (surimi) used in crab sticks is made from cheap fish. The fillet is cleaned, efforts are made to remove the fishy smell, and then it is ground down into mince.
Then the other ingredients are mixed: salt, sugar, soy protein, vegetable oil, food coloring, and additives.
Tip: High-quality frozen crab sticks don’t snap when bent and are bound up in a thick wrapping. If they break easily when folded, this indicates the presence of a large amount of cornstarch.
Potato Chips are more often made from reconstituted potatoes than from fresh potatoes, which is apparently similar to washing powder.
Rice or cornflour is added first. Acrylamide, a carcinogen, accumulates during the thermal processing of potato chips.
Some brands of potato chips were found to contain amounts of this chemical that exceed safe levels (0.2 µg per kg) by 1,000%.
Tip: Potato chips made with whole potatoes contain more oil because they are fried, whereas those made with reconstituted potatoes are usually roasted.
In addition to the ingredients mentioned above, some cereal brands contain palm oil. Also, corn syrup can be found in many of them. It contains a lot of fructose, a fact that is not mentioned on the box.
Tip: Due to the presence of sugar and large amounts of cornstarch, experts do not recommend feeding children cereal for breakfast every day. Sugar is most often found in “frozen” cereals and those containing fruit.
In addition to the fruit itself, the amount of which varies between 1% and 5%, the fruit filling also contains cornstarch, sugar, flavorings, colorings, and acid buffers. Cornstarch, gelatin, sodium alginate, and gum resin are used as stabilizers.
Tip: The best yogurts contain whole milk and healthy bacteria (the amount of bifidobacteria and lactic acid bacteria should be indicated). Cream and buttermilk are also acceptable ingredients.
Botanical oil, most often palm oil, is used in the production of this chocolate paste. Other ingredients include vanilla, emulsifiers, thickeners, and flavorings.
Tip: Don’t buy chocolate spread with a white coating, as it is more likely to contain palm oil and less cocoa. The world’s largest producer of chocolate paste recommends consuming no more than 2 teaspoons per day.
General Tips for Choosing Food Products
The general rule: the fewer ingredients a product contains, the healthier it will be consumed. Try to remember what constitutes a bad health additive. The lists can be found here, here, and here.
Similar names, but not identical to famous brands, allow producers to avoid observing certain food quality standards. In some places, companies can set their own standards, which may differ from those that apply across the country.
Check products for sugar, which can be described as “syrup,” “molasses,” “dextrose,” “sorbose,” and other names that end in “-ose.” It can also appear on the packaging as E967 (koenlinite), E954 (saccharin) – basically, any additive that begins with “E9”.
Preview photo credit rvlsoft / Shutterstock.com