Eating well is a matter of choice and this choice starts with the fruits and vegetables grown, the high animal meat and the food receiving minimal treatment. The food should be organic and rarely (if ever) contain additives. But it can happen that the methods used today by food producers are neither healthy nor sustainable. All of this causes damage to our health and the environment. So we decided to have a new look at food through the eyes of people who spend their lives discovering what is safe to eat or not. “Their answers do not necessarily contain a list of forbidden foods.” Choosing alternative solutions could bring you better health and a better conscience, experts say.
1. Canned tomatoes: Fredrick Vom Saal is an endocrinologist at the University of Missouri who studies bisphenol-A.
The problem : Epoxy resin cans contain bisphenol-A, a synthetic estrogen that has been linked to reproductive problems, heart disease, diabetes and obesity. The acidity of tomatoes causes the infiltration of bisphenol A (BPA) into your food. Studies indicate that BPA in most people’s bodies is surplus and suppresses sperm production and causes chromosomal damage in animal eggs. “You can get 50 mcg of BPA per liter in canned tomatoes, a level that impacts people, especially young people,” says vom Saal. “I can not go anywhere with canned tomatoes. “
The solution : Choose tomatoes in glass bottles (which do not need resin coating).
2. Beef fed on maize
Joel Salatin is co-owner of Polyface Farms and author of half a dozen books on agricultural issues.
The problem : beef cattle are supposed to eat grass and not seeds. But today farmers are feeding their animals with corn and soybeans to feed the animals faster for slaughter. But this affects the quality of the meat. A comprehensive study was recently led by the USDA and researchers at Clemson University found that unlike corn-fed meat, grass-fed beef has a higher level of beta-carotene, vitamin E , omega-3, conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), calcium, magnesium, potassium that reduces inflammation of omega-6 as well as saturated fats associated with heart disease. “We have to respect the fact that cows are herbivores and that means you can not feed them with corn and chicken manure,” says Salatin.
The solution : Buy grass-fed beef found in specialty food stores and in stores that have organic foods. Meat is usually marked because it requires a premium, but if you do not see it then ask your butcher.
3. Popcorn cooked in the microwave
Olga Naidenko is a principal investigator for the Environmental Working Group.
The problem : Chemicals, including perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) that are among other things a class of compounds that may be related to infertility in humans according to a recent UCLA (University) study. from California Los Angeles). On animal testing chemicals cause cancer of the liver, testes and pancreas. Studies indicate that microwaves cause chemicals that vaporize and migrate popcorn. “They stay in your body for years and accumulate,” said Naidenko, which is why researchers fear that these elevated levels in humans may be similar and responsible for cancer in laboratory animals. DuPont and other manufacturers have pledged to phase out PFOA by 2015 through a voluntary scheme from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), but millions of bags of popcorn (popcorn ) will be sold by then.
The solution : Make your popcorn in a pan, as we did at the time. For aromas you can add real butter or dry seasonings such as dill, vegetable flakes …
4. Non-organic potatoes
Jeffrey Moyer is the President of the Canadian General Standards Board (CGSB).
The problem : Vegetable roots absorb herbicides, pesticides and fungicides that are in the soil. Especially in the case of potatoes that are treated with fungicides during the growing season then they are treated with herbicides to kill the fibrous vines before harvest. After they are dug up and treated again to prevent them from germinating. Do this experiment: Buy a conventional potato from a store and try to sprout it up. Nothing will happen, “says Moyer, who is also director of the Rodale Agricultural Institute. “I spoke with potato growers who say they would not eat the potatoes they sell. They have separate plots where they grow potatoes for themselves without chemicals. “
The solution : Buy organic potatoes. Washing is not enough to remove chemicals that have been absorbed into the flesh. Organic potatoes cost only 0.50 to 1.40 euros per kilo, a little more expensive than non organic ones.
Dr. David Carpenter, director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University of Albany has published an important study in the journal of Science on Fish Contamination.
The problem : Salmon is part of the list of foods that experts avoid because it is not made to be piled up in pens and fed on soy, with poultry waste and feathers hydrolysed poultry. As a result, farmed salmon contain less vitamin D and contain carcinogens, PCBs, brominated flame retardants, and pesticides such as dioxins and DDT. According to Carpenter “You could eat salmon every 5 months without increasing your risk of cancer,” said Carpenter, in 2004 a study on fish contamination gained wide media attention. “It’s so bad. Preliminary science has also linked DDT, diabetes and obesity, but some nutritionists believe that the benefits of omega-3s outweigh the risks. It is also concerned about the high level of antibiotics and pesticides used to treat these fish. When you eat farmed salmon, you ingest the same drugs and chemicals.
The solution : Go for wild Alaskan salmon. If the package says fresh Atlantic salmon, it’s breeding. There is no commercial fishery left for wild Atlantic salmon.
6.The artificial hormone milk
The problem : Milk producers treat their dairy cows with recombinant bovine growth hormone to increase milk production. But it also increases udder infections and there is even pus in the milk. It also leads to higher levels of a hormone, insulin-like growth factor in milk. In people, high levels of IGF-1 could contribute to breast cancer, prostate cancer and colon cancer. “When the government approved recombinant growth hormone, it was thought that the IGF-1 of milk had to break down in the digestive tract of humans,” says Rick North, director of the health safety project. “There is no 100 percent proof that this hormone increases cancer in humans,” admits North. “However, it is banned in most industrialized countries. “
The solution : buy raw milk, check labels that say the milk does not contain recombinant bovine growth hormone, buy organic milk.
7. Conventional soybeans
Michael Harris is a biotechnology specialist who has led several projects in the biotechnology sector, including genetically modified food. He has been a consultant, manager and director for companies such as Xenon Pharmaceuticals and Genon Corporation.
The problem : Conventional soy is on the list of foods to avoid because transgenic foods are a cause for great concern because of the manipulation of DNA and the genetic code, including transfers from one species to another. other. 90% of soy in the world is genetically modified, if you are not sure that the source is organic, long-term health problems are inevitable, especially since soy is a factor that affects the hormonal balance and can even cause cancer.
The solution : Check the labels to make sure the soy does not contain GMOs and never eat unfermented sources.
8. The conventional apples
Mark Kastel is a former agribusiness executive and is co-director of the Cornucopia Institute, an agricultural and policy research group that deals with organic foods.
The problem : If the autumn fruits were competing to find out which one contains the most pesticides, the apple would win. Apple trees are individually grafted so that each variety retains its unique flavor. Apples do not develop pest resistance and are sprayed frequently. The industry claims that these residues are not harmful. But Kastel retorts that it’s only common sense to minimize exposure by avoiding the most watered products, such as apples. “Farm workers have higher rates of cancers of all kinds,” he says. And a growing number of studies are beginning to relate a higher pesticide load in the body (from all sources) to Parkinson’s disease.
The solution : Buy organic apples or apples from a farmer you can trust!
The list of foods that experts do not eat is only indicative and informative. This article is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If you want to change your diet, talk to your doctor who is qualified.