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Did you know there are numerous ingredients in the food we buy that are cancer-causing, cholesterol raising, and organ damaging?  Here is a list of food ingredients you need to avoid to help you stay healthy and avoid disease.

  1. Sugar and High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)

What they are:  Sweeteners

Effects:  Weight gain, obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, heart disease.  HFCS comes from GMO corn and is manufactured with and may contain mercury, which is toxic and damaging to the brain and nervous system.

Safer Options:  Raw honey or real maple syrup (used sparingly)

  1. Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil

What it is: Known as a trans fat, this can be found in microwave popcorn, chips, pastries, cookies, peanut butter, pies, cakes, lard, margarine, cottonseed oil, and palm kernel oil.

Effects:  High cholesterol, cardiovascular disease, stroke, kidney failure, and other heart diseases.

Safer Options:  Good Fats, Bad Fats

  1. Aspartame

What it is: An artificial sweetener (Nutrasweet and Equal are brand names) found in “sugar-free” products, breath mints, chewing gum, protein powders, yogurt, puddings, diet sodas, cooking sauces, and children’s vitamins and medicines.

Effects:  Converted to formaldehyde (cancer-causing) in the body, associated with lymphomas, leukemia, headaches, widespread pain, severe menstrual cramps, and other toxic reactions.

Safer Options:  Xylitol is a “sugar alcohol” with about one half the calories as sugar.  Stevia (not Truvia which also contains sugar) is a natural, calorie-free sweetener derived from a leafy bush in South America.  

  1. Acesulfame-K

What it is:  Another artificial sweetener in similar food products with similar side effects as Aspartame.

  1. Sodium Nitrate and Sodium Nitrite

What it is:  Food preservative, helps retain red coloring in processed meat products.

Effects:  Its chemical component contains carcinogens, and when accumulated in the body, can lead to stomach, prostate, and breast cancers. It has also been found to cause fetal deaths, miscarriages, and birth defects in animals.

Safer Option:  Look for nitrate or nitrite-free meat products.

  1. Butylated hydrozyttoluene (BHT) and Butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA)

What it is:  Common among processed foods and also in cereals, potato chips, vegetable oils, and chewing gums

Effects: Increases the risk of cancer development, liver enlargement, and interferes with cell growth.

  1. Monosodium glutamate (MSG) 

What it is:  An artificial flavor enhancer that is found in canned soups, chips, crackers, salad dressings, and frozen foods. It is also disguised under label entries such as “spices,” “natural flavoring,” and “seasonings.”

Effects:  An excitotoxin, which means it overexcites your nerve and brain cells to the point of damage or death. Known to cause headaches, fatigue, dizziness, depression, rapid heartbeat, tingling, numbness and many other symptoms.

  1. Sodium Benzoate

What it is:  A preservative found in pickles, salad dressings, fruit juices and soft drinks.

Effects:  When mixed with ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), sodium benzoate transforms into benzene, a known carcinogen.  Studies have shown that sodium benzoate along with artificial food colorings can cause behavior and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children.

  1. Food colorings 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, and 40

What they are:  These are food dyes blue, red, green, and yellow. Used in beverages, baked goods, and candies, cherries, fruit cocktail, sausage, and Jello.

Effects:  Linked to numerous forms of cancer, along with hyperactivity and other behavioral problems in children.

  1. Potassium Bromate

What it is:  A bleaching agent in white flour and can be found in pizza dough, breads, and rolls.

Effect:  Found to cause cancer in both animals and humans.