Although food additives can improve the appearance, taste, safety, nutritional quality or shelf life of foods, they sometimes affect health adversely by causing reactions in sensitive individuals. Used in far larger amounts than are common in foods, some additives may even cause cancer.Continue Reading
Food additives play an important role in the enjoyment of food and in food safety. For example, breakfast cereals contain additives that increase their nutritional value. Additives added to meats help retard spoilage, thereby protecting consumers against illness due to bacteria and other pathogens. In addition, additives enhance the flavor of prepared foods by imparting saltiness or sweetness. Thickeners, stabilizers, emusifiers and other additives give prepared foods a pleasing texture and consistency.
Relatively few individuals are adversely affected by food additives. Among those who do have sensitivities, side effects may include digestive upset; sleeplessness and agitation; respiratory problems such as asthma; and hives, itching and other skin issues.
In the U.S., food additives are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The FDA approves additives used in the nation's food supply after evaluating them for safety. Safety determinations are based on the additives' composition, the amount likely to be ingested, and the additives' possible effects on long-term health.Learn more about Food Facts
Food irradiation reduces the number of pests, molds, parasites and bacteria on many foods, according to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, but the Organic Consumers Association points out that irradiating food does not make it completely safe from organisms such as viruses and prions. According to the CDC, irradiation also prevents food spoilage and foodborne illness.Full Answer >
Benefits of open lunch sessions at schools include giving students more diverse and nutritionally sound food options and exercising responsibility, while cons include inviting deviant behavior and putting responsibility on school staff for ensuring students' safety. During open lunch sessions, some schools offer students the choice of leaving school grounds, provided they return later in the day, while others let students have free time, provided they stay on school grounds. Students have the option of dining elsewhere during the normal lunch hour; some administrators say granting students that freedom promotes healthy eating and socializing, while others raise concerns over traffic fatalities and accidents.Full Answer >
Food additives and preservatives are known to cause health dangers such as lymphoma, seizures, diabetes, migraines and multiple sclerosis. Parkinson's, mental confusion, Alzheimer's, nausea and fibromyalgia are other known dangers of food additives and preservatives. The list of food additive dangers goes on to include headaches, dizziness, chronic fatigue, anxiety attacks and emotional disorders.Full Answer >
One way to neutralize the acidic taste that results from putting too much vinegar in food is to counterbalance the vinegar taste with other flavors such as sweet, salty and savory flavors. Used primarily as food flavoring, vinegar is made by fermenting ethanol with acetic acid bacteria. There are more than 20 varieties of vinegar including apple cider, balsamic, sherry and wine vinegar.Full Answer >