What additives have been banned in the past decade?

There have been many food additives that have been banned in the United States and other countries. For example, dye Red #2 is banned in the United States; it is not banned in Canada. Another dye, Red #40, is used in the U.S. to replace the Red #2, and is also used in Canada, but is banned in much of Europe. The banned-not-banned problem can create a dilemma for those who eat  imported foods from all over–and may have an adverse reaction because they are not aware that a particular dye is in the food.

What is BPA and why has it become a concern?

   BPA (Bisphenol) is a plastic additive that is found in some plastic water bottles, and in the inner coating of many food cans. Research has connected this chemical–which mimics the hormone estrogen–with several types of cancer. Because of the problem with BPA, many manufactures are now selling their products without BPA; for the consumer, the best way to stay away from BPA is to avoid the containers that have chemical–or to look for products that advertise they are “BPA-free.”

How widespread is the use of GMO crops in U.S. foods?

The list of GMO crops in the U.S. food products seems to grow every year. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, to date, it is estimated that around 93 percent of soy, 93 percent of cotton, and 86 percent of corn grown in the United States have GMOs; and there are also GM varieties of sugar beets, squash, and Hawaiian papaya. It is also estimated that over 90 percent of the canola grown in the U.S. contains products that are genetically modified. And according to  estimates, about 75 to 80 percent of processed foods found in the average United States and Canadian grocery stores have GMOs, which are found in such ingredients as corn oil, soy meal, sugar, and corn syrup.

At this time, most of these GM products are required to be labeled as genetically engineered, although there are still some products that don’t have to be labeled–but the rules are rapidly changing. Thus, if you are concerned about GMOs, look for the “non-GMO” label on the products you buy.

Take the time to check labels and read the ingredients  so that you know what is in your food. To be healthy is a choice, lets make the healthy choice.