5 harmful chemicals added to common foods

Be careful of what you put in your mouth.

Lady seasoning vegetables

Some substances in foods have been associated with adverse health effects and should be avoided, while others are safe and can be consumed with minimal risk.

The use of chemicals and food additives makes many foods unfit for human consumption, and regular intake of such foods might be deadly too.

These common food chemicals are added to foods and are not healthy for the human body.

  • Artificial sweeteners

The most common type of artificial sweeteners are aspartame, sucralose, saccharin, and acesulfame potassium. While they claim to promote weight loss and blood sugar control, they might result in headaches and other health issues.

  • Artificial food colouring

Research indicates that artificial food colouring may cause hyperactivity in sensitive children and can cause allergic reactions. The use of red colour has been shown to increase the risk of thyroid tumours.

  • Trans fat

It is a type of unsaturated fat that has undergone hydrogenation, which increases shelf life and improves the consistency of products. It is commonly found in processed foods and is linked with a higher risk of heart disease. It also causes inflammation and diabetes.

  • Sodium nitrite

It is a common chemical used in processed meat that can be converted into a harmful compound called nitrosamine. Regular consumption of this chemical is also linked to a higher risk of several types of cancer.

  • ​High-fructose corn syrup

Commonly used in soda, juice, candy, breakfast cereal, and snacks, this chemical is linked with weight gain, diabetes, and inflammation.

  • Sodium benzoate

Even though this chemical is considered safe by the FDA, there are studies that suggest it is potentially harmful to humans. It has been associated with increased hyperactivity and when combined with vitamin C, it may be associated with cancer development.

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