Nine hidden toxins lurking in your food

Hydrogenated oils are used to lengthen the shelf life of products like crackers and cookies, and they are associated with diabetes and heart disease.

If you are not armed with some basic knowledge and awareness, deceptively packaged and presented food in your grocery store can be as dangerous as the proverbial wolf in sheep’s clothing. Here are some tips to help you steer clear of hidden toxins that masquerade as safe products.

1. Stay away from processed meats like hot dogs, bacon and sausage. Sodium nitrate can cause the formation of nitrosamines in your system, which can lead to cancer.

2. Reduce the canned food you consume. Cans are commonly lined with bisphenol-A, an organic compound that may be associated with diabetes and heart disease.

3. Skip the artificial sweeteners and diet sodas. Prolonged exposure to aspartame, a neurotoxic chemical additive in these products, can lead to nerve cell damage, dizziness and headaches.

4. Purchase organic chicken. The Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy discovered traces of arsenic in nonorganic chickens. Exposure to this dangerous chemical can lead to cancer, diabetes and heart disease. Another study also found numerous antibiotic-resistant bacteria in conventional poultry.

5. Avoid manufactured or processed snacks. Hydrogenated oils are used to lengthen the shelf life of products like crackers and cookies, and they are associated with diabetes and heart disease. Snack foods are also loaded with salt, high-fructose corn syrup and other unhealthy ingredients.

6. Stay away from artificially colored foods like candy, maraschino cherries and gelatin. Mice and rats exposed to the dyes blue 1 and 2, red 3 and yellow 6 suffered from brain, adrenal gland, thyroid and kidney tumors.

7. Buy organic produce. Lingering pesticides can lead to nervous and reproductive system damage, not to mention cancer.

8. Avoid Teflon cookware. The Teflon used to create nonstick surfaces can release noxious gases when exposed to high temperatures, putting you at risk for a wide variety of diseases, many of which are not even well-documented at this time.

9. Never microwave food in plastic bowls, containers or dishes. Exposure to heat causes the bisphenol-A found in plastics to break down and potentially contaminate your food.

 

Sources: AlterNet August 11, 2009, and Mercola.com.

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 28, Number , Oct/Nov 2009.

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