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Tag: Marion Nestle

What’s In an Egg at Fast Food Restaurants?

Getting an egg may seem to be a healthy option when you’re looking to grab something at a fast food or fast-casual restaurant. But is it always just an egg that you’re getting when you order that egg sandwich?

Unfortunately not. My readers know that I am a fan of eggs as a healthy food, however, while Panera uses freshly cracked eggs in their offerings, here’s what’s in Subway’s Egg Omelet Patty (Regular):

Whole eggs, egg whites, water, nonfat dry milk, premium egg blend (isolated pea product, salt, citric acid, dextrose, guar gum, xanthan gum, extractive of spice, propylene glycol and not more than 2% calcium silicate and glycerin to prevent caking), soybean oil, butter alternative (liquid and hydrogenated soybean oil, salt, soy lecithin, natural and artificial flavors, beta carotene (color), TBHQ and citric acid added to protect flavor, dimethylpolysiloxane (antifoaming agent added), salt, beta-carotene (color).

As Marion Nestle remarks: At least egg is the first ingredient!

Yes, there are eggs in the egg sandwich at Subway, but also a whole lot more for sensitive people to watch out for. Hydrogenated fats, artificial colors, the evil “natural and artificial flavors” catch-all that can hide dozens of chemicals, dextrose (a derivative of corn), dimethylpolysiloxane… Yuck! That “egg sandwich patty” is a chemical stew rather than a pure egg.

Forbes has compiled a list of the ingredients in a lot of breakfast sandwiches, so be sure to check out what you might be ordering before you chomp down.

Are All Food Additives Guaranteed To Be Safe?

I almost titled this post: Does the FDA Test and Validate the Safety of the Additives Found in Our Foods?

To both questions, the answer is an unqualified “No”!

The truth of the matter is that no one is looking out for you, the consumer, and your health; you are responsible for your own health. Mainstream food companies are concerned with profits, or making the most desirable (and hopefully addictive) product out of the least expensive ingredients that have nothing to do with you the consumer’s health.

Respected food quality guru Marion Nestle writes in her blog, Food Politics, about a recent study concerning food additives published in JAMA Internal Medicine, a very respected medical journal. It turns out that the FDA has very little involvement as to if food additives are labeled GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe).

So who decides if a food additive is safe to eat? The manufacturer.

• The manufacturer gets to decide if they want to tell the FDA about a food additive.

• The manufacturer gets to decide if they want to conduct studies funded and designed by their own scientists or convene a “panel” populated by their own “experts” to review the safety of a food additive.

• The manufacturer gets to decide if the food additive is safe or not.

The FDA pretty much accepts what it is told by manufacturers, because, as I’ve noted before in this blog, the FDA’s mission is not necessarily to protect the American populace from unscrupulous manufacturers peddling poisons and calling them food or medicine, but to promote and protect the American industry innovation.

The FDA does not have the scope to do its own testing of the thousands of food additives currently on the market; it must rely on the manufacturers themselves to tell it if there is a problem with a substance. As Marion Nestle says, ” As long as not too many people roll over dead after eating foods with new additives, nobody will ever have a clue whether the additive is safe.”

Top food additives to avoid from