We’re Not Trying To Scare You But…This Is Scary: Creepy Facts About Foods You Eat Every Day

February 5, 2013  |  
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Tease the “tree-huggers” lined up at their co-ops, or tending to their plot of the communal garden every day, but they could be onto something. Alarming processes and protocol aren’t only reserved for fast and processed food. There are dark secrets in almost every corner of the mass-market food industry. Surprised? See what’s going on with your food behind your back.

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Your produce can carry excrement

The FDA has deemed certain defects as harmless and allows them in the produce you buy in major stores. Just a few examples: Cinnamon can contain up to 1 milligram of animal excrement per pound, Berries can carry up to 4 larvae per 100 grams and canned pineapple can pack in 20% molded fruit.

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Eating healthy is expensive…very expensive

Researchers finally crunched the numbers to find out just how much more it costs to eat healthy, versus unhealthy. The results? Shocking. Two thousand calories of junk food will cost you about $3.52 a day. The same number of calories from nutritious food costs you about $36 a day. The worst part is 81% of that price you’re paying isn’t for the actual food, but for marketing, manufacturing and packaging.

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You’re not entitled to knowing where your salad comes from

When it comes to fresh produce, grocers must inform you where the food came from. But with mixed produce—like prewashed and packaged bags of “mixed greens”—you’re not entitled to any of that information. This poses a real problem considering the CDC named leafy greens one of the top foods to carry food borne illnesses. But if you hear an announcement of an E. Coli outbreak in spinach from a certain country, you have no way of knowing if that spinach made it into your mixed green bag.

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Fruits and veggies aren’t as potent as they used to be

The USDA reports that fruits and vegetables today contain significantly fewer nutrients than they did two generations ago. Researchers examined 43 types of produce and found an average 15% drop in iron and a 20% drop in Vitamin C.

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Calorie counts aren’t always honest

Out of 42 sit-down and fast-food chains analyzed, researchers found that nearly 20% of them were under-reporting the calorie content of their food by 100 calories or more. That’s alarming considering that regularly eating 100 more calories than necessary could add up to a 10 lb. weight gain in just one year.

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Chicken isn’t the diet choice anymore

You know you should avoid red meat, so instead you buy a mega pack of chicken drumsticks. But due to common farming practices—like cramped environments and poor diet—chicken today contains 266% more fan than it did 40 years ago. Adding insult to injury is the fact that it contains 33% less protein. Aren’t these the opposite things you hoped to get from chicken?

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Milk may cause cancer

The hormone rBST, fed to cows so they can produce twice as much milk as they did 40 years ago, has been linked to a multitude of different cancers including prostate, breast and colon. Look out for the rBST-free label on dairy products. It’s pricier, but worth it.

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Peaches can carry 9 different pesticides

Due to its breakable, porous skin, peaches are often drenched in up to as many as 9 pesticides to prevent insect takeover, bruising and blemishing. Apples, celery, strawberries and spinach are also culprits. Wash with both water and soap before consuming these produce.

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Trans fat is hiding

Some sub-par FDA regulations let food processors slap that “0 grams of trans fat” label on their foods, even when that food contains up to .49 grams per serving. That can translate to 5 grams of trans fat after you’ve polished off that bag of chips.

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Calories are easier to come by today

USDA data reveals that the food industry provides 2,700 calories to every person, every day. Forty years ago, the average person only got their hands on about 2,200 calories per day. That’s 52 added pounds of fat per year, per person.

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Food dye can hype your kid up

Researchers found that commonly used food dyes, such as Yellow #5, Yellow #6 and Red #40 can make kids hyper active. And, of course, kids foods are the most dyed foods in the super market.

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Poisonous poultry

A study by Consumers Union found 12% of tested chickens from super markets carry Salmonella, and almost 50% carry Campylobacter—one of the top causes of food poisoning in the US.

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Your meat is being gassed

Most producers of ground beef employ a company that runs meat through pipes, exposing it to ammonia gases, to eradicate bacteria. Not only does evidence suggest this process isn’t 100% effective, companies are not disclosing that your meat is exposed to the poisonous gas.

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Aluminum carries BPA

You’ve switched to BPA-free water bottles, but did you know aluminum cans are lined with the chemical? BPA, once in your body, has been linked to behavioral problems, reproductive issues and obesity. There’s yet to be a replacement found for aluminum cans so just avoid them when you can.

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