Ingredients That Should Scare You

Endurance Wellness Coaching

When you pick up a packaged product, you may be concerned about the multi-syllable chemical compounds you find back there. Some, like mixed tocopherols or naicinamide, are harmless substances (like vitamin E or B3). Others, including the ones listed below, are best to avoid.

  • Acesulfame potassium: an artificial sweetener that may cause hypoglycemia
  • Artificial flavoring: could be anything, but most things we use as artificial flavorings are banned in Europe
  • Artificial colors: blues have been linked to cancers and are banned in Europe. Red has caused thyroid tumors in rat studies. Yellow may cause concentration problems in children. 
  • Aspartame: artificial sweetener that may cause headaches, nausea, insomnia, rashes.
  • Benzoate (BHT, BHA, TBHQ): a preservative that is supposed to keep fat from turning rancid, but may cause ADHD
  • Brominated vegetable oil: an emulsifier in citrus flavored drinks that may cause memory loss, fatigue, and headaches
  • Carrageenan: a thickener that is found in many natural and organic products that may cause digestive upset
  • High fructose corn syrup: a sweetener that may increase cholesterol, obesity, and insulin resistance. 
  • Hydrogenated oil: trans fat that is linked to heart disease. May be in foods labeled as "trans fat free" if there is less than .5 grams per serving. 
  • Monosodium glutamate (MSG): a flavor enhancer that is liked to breathing problems during sleep, headahces, and high blood pressure
  • Nitrates and nitrites: Preservative in cured meats that may increase the risk of thyroid cancer and colon cancer.
  • Olestra: synthetic fat that causes digestive distress and nutritional deficiencies
  • Polysorbate 80: Emulsifier in dairy products that can cause difficulty breathing and a number of other reactions
  • Propyl gallate: a preservative that is often used with benzoates. It may cause cancer and allergic reactions. 
  • Saccharin: the oldest FDA approved artificial sweetener, it is linked to bladder cancer and weight gain.
  • Sugar alcohols: sweetener substitutes that may have a laxative effects
  • Sulfur and sulfites: preservatives that may cause asthma attacks and migranes