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What's Really In Your Food?

Global Public Health
by

Sarah Perry

on 7 February 2014

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Transcript of What's Really In Your Food?

What's Really In Your Food?

Modern Use of Additives
History
Now
Future Implications
International Progress
RUTF (Ready to Use Therapeutic Foods)-
High amounts of nutrients in small amount of food help with weight gain in areas where malnutrition causes shrinking of stomach
plumpy nut (first solid food)
Ensure (liquid; used during Guantanamo hunger strike)
Side note: Sustainable Crops & GMOS in relation to third world economics
Processed foods not common; People grew what they ate
Salt to preserve meat
Pliny the Elder (23-79AD) found adulteration in food supply, e.g. bread
1820 -
Adulterations of Food and Culinary Poisons
, Frederick Accum
advances in chemical analysis
1862 - Lincoln appointed Chemist in Dept of Ag
1906 - Pure Food and Drugs Act
borax, formaldehyde, salicylic acid, copper sulfate banned
Subject to review and approval by FDA
1997 - "GRAS" notification procedure
Benefits and Dangers with Additives
FDA - list of food additives (over 3,000), petition process
extensive approval process
Some available in US that aren't in other countries
Many additives harmful still - e.g. sodium nitrate, olestra
Trend towards more natural ingredients is strong in U.S.
This is more expensive in a staggering economy (shorter shelf life)
Lack of standardization (mixture of active ingredients often poorly characterized, FDA budget already too low to also certify quality of organic materials)
Environmental concerns growing (additives act as contaminants not only to the human body)
Issues with testing
Additives tested in isolation--effects in combination unknown
Ethics (testing on animals)
Benefits:
-Esthetics/Appeal
-Availability & Urbanization
-Nutrition (Maintain and Improve)

Dangers:
-Aspertame (Artificial Sweetener)
-Food Coloring
-Causes hyperactivity in children, headache
-Trans-fat
-Hydrogenated vegetable oil, gives longer shelf life, bad cholesteral
-Sodium Nitrite
-Used for meats, preservatives
(carginogen)
10,000+ additives, 3,000 are FDA approved
Full transcript