Food Additives and Your Health

I have touched on additives in food that may be impacting your health in the past and this week I will be elaborating on the topic.

There are many different products that companies may add to food in order to modify the quality of the food, such as the texture, shelf life, or colour. Carboxymethylcellulose and polysorbate-80 are two of these such products – they keep fats and oils from separating and improve texture and shelf life of salad dressings, non-dairy milk, veggie burgers, and hamburger patties. Similar emulsifiers include lecithin, carrageenan, polyglycerols and xanthum gum.

While these additives may seem to improve the quality of our food, these emulsifiers can have some negative effects as well. In testing, these emulsifiers caused chronic colitis in mice with already abnormal immune systems. In mice with healthy immune systems, they showed mild intestinal inflammation and metabolic dysfunction that led to obesity, high blood pressure and insulin resistance.

With all of this in mind, it is important to remember to read your labels and avoid these emulsifiers where possible.

Evelyn Gilkinson is the Nurse Lead for Charlton Health Inc. Before devoting herself solely to Infusing Biologics, Gilkinson worked at Toronto General Hospital, Flinders Medical Centre (Adelaide, Australia), and the London Health Science Centre in Thoracic Step Down, neonate, pediatric and adult Intensive Care, Recovery Room, and Emergency Medicine. Evelyn has done research for The Canadian Cervical Spine Study and with the AIM Health Group. She established the first out-of Hospital Infusion Centres in London and Waterloo. For the last twelve years, Evelyn was the Nurse Supervisor for South Western Ontario for many infusion sites until joining the Charlton team in the summer of 2016.

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