Let’s make a change in the food industry
I have a list of silly and serious things that I want to accomplish in my life. I have a tumor that has changed my life by forcing me to make healthier lifestyle choices. One of my goals is to get the food industry or a few companies to stop putting artificial ingredients and preservatives in the food that we eat. I have been researching how to get laws changed. I then resulted to extensive research on becoming a member of congress. After all my research I decided the easiest thing to do is to write companies and ask them to stop putting artificial ingredients and preservatives in our food. I have started writing some of the companies that make children’s snack. You have no idea how many different snacks and kids cereals that are slowly killing them.
I am not tackling the issue of the sugar that is in 74% of products in the US food supply. Some studies have suggested sugar is as addictive as cocaine. A solution to this would be artificial sugar but, it can cause cancer. A team of researchers at the University of North Carolina conducted a detailed survey of the packaged foods and drinks that are purchased in American grocery stores and found that 60% of them include some form of added sugar. (References)
In my post Fat Shaming, I discussed how practically all the food that we eat contains ingredients that causes obesity, cancer, and other serious health problems.
Here are some of the synthetic preservatives that are in many of the foods that we eat:
- Benzoates (such as sodium benzoate)
- Nitrites (such as sodium nitrite)
- Sulphites (such as sulphur dioxide)
- Bisphenols, such as BPA. They can act like the hormone estrogen and interfere with puberty and fertility. Bisphenols can also increase body fat, and cause problems with the immune system and nervous system. They are found in the lining of food and soda cans, plastics with the number 3 or 7, and cash register receipts, among other places. They used to be found in plastic baby bottles and sippy cups; while this has been banned, older bottles and cups may still contain them.
- Phthalates. These can also act like hormones, interfering with male genital development, and can increase the risk of obesity and cardiovascular disease. They are ubiquitous, found not just in plastic packaging, garden hoses, and inflatable toys, but also in things like nail polish, hairsprays, lotions, and fragrances.
- Perfluoroalkyl chemicals (PFCs). They can lead to low-birthweight babies, as well as problems with the immune system, the thyroid, and fertility. They are commonly found in grease-proof paper, cardboard packaging, and commercial household products such as water-repellent fabric and nonstick pans, among other places.
- Perchlorate. This chemical also interferes with thyroid function and can disrupt early brain development. It’s found in some dry food packaging — it’s used to decrease static electricity — and sometimes in drinking water.
- Artificial food colors. These have been found to increase symptoms in children who have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD. They are found in all sorts of food products, but especially those marketed for children.
- Nitrates and nitrites. These can interfere with the thyroid, as well as with the blood’s ability to deliver oxygen to the body. They can also increase the risk of certain cancers. They are used to preserve food and enhance its color. They are commonly found in processed foods, especially meats.
Please help me by emailing, writing letters, or calling some of the companies that make your favorite foods. One company told me that they will forward my message to their product manager but, it comes down to keeping the cost down. As parents, we have to decide if we want to buy our children’s favorite snacks or cereal that is killing them slowly or search long and hard for rare healthy substitutes. The companies do not give us enough options to eat healthy. It should be illegal to put harmful substances in our food.
Next time you go grocery shopping, as you walk down the aisles, pay attention to how many products have the words artificial or preservatives. I feel like this is when being famous or have a large following would come in handy because it is easier and faster to reach more people. But, there are no excuses and I can still try to make a change however long this may take. There can be massive change in numbers and if the food companies see that Americans actually care and will stop buying their products, they will make a change.
If you have any suggestions, please let me know. It seems like a impossible task but, I think that it is worth at least telling them how we feel.
Thank you for helping me to try to change the world in the smallest way that we can.