Some Foods Are Worse Than Others: A Few to Avoid at All Cost
By Kurtis Bright
Although We’re Swimming in Unhealthy Food Choices, Avoid These in Particular to Keep From Drowning
If you can take a step back and objectively look at what food manufacturers are trying to sell us in the developed world, it’s almost funny how horrible this “food” is for you.
Or it would be funny if it weren’t so tragic.
It’s impossible to drive along main street in any U.S. town without being pummeled with brightly-colored signs advertising all manner of junk food--and that’s just the restaurants.
Imagine yourself as an alien next time you walk in to a grocery store and consider the walls of sugary soda and deep-fried, preservative-laden, genetically-modified, partially-hydrogenated garbage that surrounds you: what might one think of a species that eats stuff like this? Are they suicidal or what?
But as ludicrously, objectively terrible as much of our so-called food selection is, there are certain items that are definitively worse than others. Some of the most heinous offenders, foods you should avoid at all cost.
- Farmed salmon - The sales pitch is that, while you might not want to make farmed salmon your first choice, it is nonetheless tolerable, and that it may even be better for the environment due to massive overfishing of wild salmon. However, don’t buy the hype. Farmed salmon is raised on an abnormal diet of grains--not often found in the wilds of the rivers and coastal areas where the animals live naturally. And then there’s the heavy doses of antibiotics required to keep the fish alive in the disgusting, unnatural, and unhealthy pens in which they spend their entire lives. The vitamins, chemicals, and other drugs that are fed to these animals have a cost: they accumulate in your system, often dangerously so. Such is that alarm over this issue that New Zealand, Australia and even Russia have banned the sale of farmed salmon.
- Genetically engineered papaya - These days the vast majority of Hawaiian papaya is genetically modified to resist a disease called ringspot. And despite the sock-puppet accounts you can find on online media telling you there is nothing to fear from eating GE foods, study after study has shown that animals fed GMO grains suffer organ damage, intestinal damage, tumors, and birth defects. The E.U. has flat-out banned all Hawaiian papayas because it considers them too dangerous and compromised.
- Meat tainted with Ractopamine - There is an unlikely ally for factory farmers called ractopamine, an asthma drug that is routinely fed to cattle, pigs and turkeys. The reason isn’t to help the breathing of the animals; rather, it has been found to be a powerful muscle enhancer, thus speeding the growth of the animals and enhancing profits. The problem with ractopamine is that residue remains in the meat you buy at the store, up to 20 percent of it. And it is poisonous: over 1700 people have been hospitalized after eating ractopamine-laced pork in the last 20 years. It’s in 45 percent of U.S. pork and 30 percent of ration-fed U.S. cattle. If you want to know how bad the danger really is, consider that even China has banned the chemical. As if you needed another reason to avoid factory-farmed meat.
- Sports drinks contain flame retardant - Something called brominated vegetable oil was first developed to be used as a flame retardant. Ever seeking new and unique ways to poison us, sports beverage manufacturers have found it can be used as a cheap flavoring in citrus-flavored beverages. Despite the Food and Drug Administration--being the sharp tacks they are--approving its use for human consumption in 1977, subsequent studies have shown that brominated vegetable oil is bioaccumulative in human tissue, especially in breast tissue. Subsequently it can also be found in breast milk, and is known to cause reproductive issues and behavioral problems in large doses.