Ever craving a bowl of how cup noodles on a rainy days? Longing for crispy potato chips to munch while watching Netflix? Or perhaps feeling like chewing on a sweet, colorful bubble gums as you line up in the queue? Those tempting, mouth-watering foods such as chips, candies, gummy bears, milk, soft drinks, instant noodle, and so on seemed like, never gets too boring. Even if some of them are banned by few countries, including Europe. Did you realize? That those yummy foods have ‘special ingredients’ that attract us? That they may contain a lot of chemicals?
Just imagine, if you buy a chips and it wasn’t as golden-brownish as how it was, wouldn’t it be less attractive to you? If the chips you bought weren’t that savory, maybe you’d prefer frying your own chips, right? Most of all, if milk are not preserved, they might be rotten right away before they even reach your hand.
So, the thing is that one kind of food product that we bought in the supermarket may even contain more than 10 chemicals. From colours, preservatives, antioxidants, sweeteners, emulsifiers, stabilisers, to gelling agents are classified as food additives categories. Unfortunately, not all of the chemicals are safe for us, human, to consume.
The European Union legislation even have their very own definition towards food additives. For them, food additives are any substance not normally consumed as a food in itself and not normally used as a characteristic ingredient of food, whether or not it has nutritive value. Food additive itself has become a component of foods, as it is added for various purposes, such as manufacturing, packaging, transport, and so on.
If China has its List of Toxic Chemicals Banned or Severely Restricted in the P.R.C, India has list of banned presticides in India, UAE has banned hazards chemicals in UAE, and even Africa has its list of restricted chemicals in South Africa, Europe has their own list. There’s a long-list of what food additives is allowed and what is not allowed in the EU. We can say that EU is quite strict and beware of food ingredients which are not-so-healthy.
Banned Food Ingredients in Europe
Here are the list of food ingredients banned in Europe:
- Azodicarbonamide/ADA (C2H4N4O2 )
Mmm, what a beautiful morning, waking up to a box of cereals or perhaps a nutritive sandwich as your lovely breakfast. Especially when in such a rush, those two types of breakfast are quite likeable, because they’re simple, quick, yet delicious to fill our stomach.
But have you ever imagined? The bread and cereals you’re eating every morning may contain the same ingridients as what your yoga mats made of? Ukh, sorry to ruin your appetite, but there might be an orange-red crystals or yellow powder chemical called as azocarbonamide in your tasty food. Not just in your yoga mats, but this chemicals was also originally made for fabric, textile, floor coverings,paints, and rubber products.
At the same time, in the cereal flour or bread dough, this chemical additive acts as a whitening agent or dough conditioner. FDA still classify this chemicals safe for food, but Europe has banned it. It is known to trigger asthma, a carcinogen called urethane is also formed when a flour containing ADA is baked. Important to know: Harmful List of Artificial Sweeteners You Should Avoid
As what we have known, almost every food poducts contain additives in it, so does beef and dairy products, especially from cow. There’s this articifial version of cow’s natural growth hormone called Recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone (rBGH). This synthetic hormone is banned from use in organic agricultural production in few countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan, and of course, the European Union.
Cows injected with rBGH will produce 15% more milk than the milk they naturally product. It is banned since it’s bad for the cow itself. Dairy cows injected with rBGH have increased incidence of disease, infection of the udder, greater instanced of knee, leg disorders, increased reproductive disorders, until shorter productive lives.
rBGH is also bad for us, people who consume dairy products from injected cows. The milk quality actually degraded, due to their udder infections, the somatic cell counts are higher in the milk of rBGH treated cows. Milk with higher SCC tends to spoil faster. As well as elevated level of Insulin-Like Growth Factor 1 (IGF-1) in their milk, which promotes tumor growth.
- BHA (C11H16O2 ) and BHT (C15H24O )
Butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) are used as food preservatives. While BHA has a white or yellowish waxy solid form, BHT is in a form of white powder.
It is commonly found in chewing gum, butter, cereals, snacks, beer, also in cosmetic products in order to preserve fats, oils, and keep them from becoming rancid. But, it is actually have been known to impair blood clotting when consumed in high quantities.
It also causes health problems in human, such as promote tumor growth. Its oxidative characteristic contribute to carcinogenicity as well. These preservation are banned in England, Japan, and many other list of food ingredients banned in Europe.
- Arsenic ( As )
This element of group VA is often used in herbicides and pesticides, yet it’s classified as carcinogen. You know what, your favourite chicken and other poultry, rice, beer, wine, and even in drinkin water might contain arsenic. And for sure, they’re not good for your health.
Arsenic that may enter the crops or water by the use of pesticides is one of the banned food ingridients in the European Union. Since Arsenic is considered as a hazards, it result similarly with few usual signs of overexposure to hazardous chemicals. They result in numbness, muscle cramping and even death.
For long-term effects, they cause pigmentation changes, skin lesions, skin cancer, diabetes, pulmonary disease, lung disease, kidney failure, as well as heart attacks.
- Brominated Vegetable Oil ( BVO )
Brominated Vegetable Oil is used to make food dye stick to liquid. So, we can found this in several sport drinks and sodas, in order to protect flavor. But, the truth is that bromine, one of the BVO’s former, is also used to keep couches and carpets from catching fire. Thus, in Europe this chemicals is banned from use as food additive already.
Health problems causesd by this additive are headache, fatigue, poor balance, even loss of ability to walk. Although it is still permited in Canada, we’d better be aware of their negative health effects and try to drink healthier beverages, perhaps.
Overall, be aware of these toxic, dangerous food ingredients wherever you are. Consume healthy diet, even when chips are still tempting. Maybe it’s okay if you want to eat instant food, snacks, etc. But you’d better reduce the frequency of consuming those unhealthy food.
Indeed, there are many list of food ingredients banned in Europe. We need to remember, the higher the doses or quantity that enter our body, the bigger the effects that we will get from them. Love you body, stay healthy.