20 Ingredients To Memorize and Avoid In ANY Food You Consume

PreventDisease.com – byMarco Torres

Artificial flavors, colors, preservatives, emulsifiers, sweeteners have saturated the food supply for more than four decades. We are on the precipice of discovering what our toxic food industry has done to our bodies and our environment. There is a heightened awareness and a sense of caution on the minds of most grocery shoppers, so let’s make it easier for them. Here are 25 of the most common toxic ingredients you must avoid in foods. The discovery of even one of these ingredients on a food label means “stay away.” 

This list is by no means all inclusive as there are dozens of other culprits, but these are the most commonly used by the food industry with little regard to consumer’s health.

1. Artificial Flavors

Artificial flavorings are derived from chemicals made in a laboratory and offer absolutely no nutritional value and are a magnet for processed foods. They show up in almost everything today, including bread, cereals, flavored yogurt, soups mixes, and cocktail mixers, so they can be hard to avoid. Every single artificial flavor in the food industry has some kind of detrimental health effect. These include neurotoxicity, organ, developmental, reproductive toxicity and cancer.

2. Enriched

Wheat is already one of those grains that should be avoided
, but the key word to watch out for is ‘enrichment’. That means niacin, thiamine, riboflavin, folic acid, and iron are added after these and other key nutrients are stripped out in the first place during the refining process. That applies to whether it’s wheat, rye, or other grains. Enriched flour is really just refined flour that has had a few nutrients re-added to it, but not enough to make any food made from this nutritionally worthy.


3. Hydrogentated or Fractionated Oils


Fractionating oil is a process most often used on palm and palm kernel oil that involves heating the oil, then cooling it quickly so that it breaks up into fractions (hence the name). The key thing is that the filtration process separates out most of the liquid part of the oil, leaving a high concentration of solid unhealthy fat behind which is terribly toxic for human consumption.

Hydrogenated oils are oils that are often healthy in their natural state, but are quickly turned into poisons through the manufacturing and processing they undergo. They take these naturally healthy oils such as palm, kernel, soybean, corn oil, canola oil or coconut oil and they heat it anywhere from five hundred to one thousand degrees. They then become fantastic preservatives because all the enzymatic activity in the oil has been neutralized during the hydrogenating process. Hydrogenated oils are the closest thing you can get to plastic sludge running through your body. If you see “hydrogenated” anywhere on an ingredient list, run like the wind.

4. Monosodium Glutamate (MSG)

The food additive “MSG” is a slow poison which hides behind dozens of names, such as natural flavoring, yeast extract, autolyzed yeast extract, disodium guanylate, disodium inosinate, caseinate, textured protein, hydrolyzed pea protein and many others. Currently, labeling standards do not require MSG to be listed in the ingredient list of thousands of foods.


MSG is not a nutrient, vitamin, or mineral and has no health benefits. The part of MSG that negatively affects the human body is the “glutamate”, not the sodium. The bound glutamic acid in certain foods (corn, molasses, wheat) is broken down or made “free” by various processes (hydrolyzed, autolyzed, modified or fermented with strong chemicals, bacteria, or enzymes) and refined to a white crystal that resembles sugar.

There are a growing number of Clinicians and Scientists who are convinced that excitotoxins play a critical role in the development of several neurological disorders, including migraines, seizures, infections, abnormal neural development, certain endocrine disorders, specific types of obesity, and especially the neurodegenerative diseases; a group of diseases which includes: ALS, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, Huntington’s disease, and olivopontocerebellar degeneration.

5. Sugar


The single largest source of calories for Americans comes from sugar. Sugar is loaded into your soft drinks, fruit juices, sports drinks, and hidden in almost all processed foods–from bologna to pretzels to Worcestershire sauce to cheese spread. And now most infant formula has the sugar equivalent of one can of Coca-Cola, so babies are being metabolically poisoned from day one if taking formula. Sugar changes metabolism, raises blood pressure, critically alters the signaling of hormones and causes significant damage to the liver — the least understood of sugar’s damages. These health hazards largely mirror the effects of drinking too much alcohol, which they point out in their commentary is the distillation of sugar. If it’s not a natural sugar, it doesn’t belong in your food.

6. High Fructose Corn Syrup

A few years ago, the Corn Refiners Association petitioned the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to allow the term ‘corn sugar’ as an alternative label declaration for high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). The reason? Too many people were finding out how lethal HFCS was for the human body.

HFCS causes insulin resistance, diabetes, hypertension, increased weight gain, and not to mention manufactured from genetically modified corn.

7. Potassium Benzoate and Sodium Benzoate


Sodium Benzoate can convert into lethal carcinogenic poison when combined with absorbic acid. Professor Peter Piper, a professor of molecular biology and biotechnology, tested the impact of sodium benzoate on living yeast cells in his laboratory. What he found alarmed him: the benzoate was damaging an important area of DNA in the “power station” of cells known as the mitochondria. “These chemicals have the ability to cause severe damage to DNA in the mitochondria to the point that they totally inactivate it: they knock it out altogether.” he stated.

Potassium benzoate often shows up in seemingly innocuous foods such as apple cider, low-fat salad dressings, syrups, jams, olives, and pickles. It is just as hazardous as Sodium Benzoate so read your labels.


8. Artificial Coloring


Food colorings still on the market are linked with cancer. Blue 1 and 2, found in beverages, candy, baked goods and pet food, have been linked to cancer in mice. Red 3, used to dye cherries, fruit cocktail, candy, and baked goods, has been shown to cause thyroid tumors in rats. Green 3, added to candy and beverages, has been linked to bladder cancer. The widely used yellow 6, added to beverages, sausage, gelatin, baked goods, and candy, has been linked to tumors of the adrenal gland and kidney.


9. Acesulfame-K

Acesulfame-K, also known as acesulfame potassium, represents one of the food additives used for sweetening aliments and drinks. It is approved by the FDA, but there are several potential problems correlated with consumption of this food additive. Even though there are many studies that attest its safety, acesulfame potassium is still suspected of causing benign thyroid tumors. In rats, the development of such tumors took only 3 months, a period in which the concentration of this additive in the consumed food was between 1 and 5 percent. This is a very short period of time, so the substance is believed to have significant carcinogenic properties. Methylene chloride, a solvent used in the manufacture of acesulfame potassium, is the substance that may give the food additive its potential carcinogenic characteristics.

10. Sucralose

Splenda/sucralose is simply chlorinated sugar; a chlorocarbon. Common chlorocarbons include carbon tetrachloride, trichlorethelene and methylene chloride, all deadly. Chlorine is nature’s Doberman attack dog, a highly excitable, ferocious atomic element employed as a biocide in bleach, disinfectants, insecticide, WWI poison gas and hydrochloric acid. Chlorocarbons are never nutritionally compatible with our metabolic processes and are wholly incompatible with normal human metabolic functioning. Sucralose is a very common additive in protein mixes and drinks so beware all of you who love to add these into your smoothies.

11. Aspartame

The sale of aspartame, with only four calories per gram and 200 times sweeter than sugar, is sold under the trademarks NutraSweet and Equal. Results indicate that aspartame is a multi-potential carcinogen, even consumed daily at 20 milligrams per kilogram of body weight. That is a lower quantity than the maximum recommended by the FDA. It’s one reason you should never purchase major brands of chewing gums.

12. BHA and BHT

Butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) and butylated hydrozyttoluene (BHT) are used to preserve common household foods. Any processed food that has a long shelf life is often filled with BHA. They are found in cereals, chewing gum, potato chips, and vegetable oils. They are oxidants, which form potentially cancer-causing reactive compounds in your body.

13. Propyl Gallate

Another preservative, often used in conjunction with BHA and BHT. It is sometimes found in meat products, chicken soup base, and chewing gum. Animals studies have suggested that it could be linked to cancer.

14. Sodium Chloride

A dash of sodium chloride, more commonly known as salt, is the culprit that the mainstream media and medical community claim we should stay away from. They’re right, but only because it’s not real salt. Common table salt (sodium chloride) has almost nothing in common with traditional rock or sea salt. If a food label lists salt, or sodium chloride as an ingredient, that’s the bad stuff and you need to avoid these foods wherever possible.

15. Soy

Although it’s often lauded as a healthy, cholesterol-free, cheap, low-fat protein alternative to meat, soy is NOT a health food. Any foods that list soy in any form as an ingredient should be avoided. Soy protein, soy isolate, and soy oil are present in about 60 percent of the foods on the market and have been shown to impair fertility and affect estrogen in women, lower sex drive, and trigger puberty early in children. Soy can also add to the imbalance between omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids.

The only soy products fit for human consumption are fermented and organic and I can guarantee you will never find this type of soy in any processed foods. The majority of soy is GMO and you can’t get around this. Regardless of who I am speaking with, soy is one of those foods I use to gauge the nutritional IQ of others. You would not believe how many health practitioners and even Naturopathic Doctors still think soy is a health food. Please don’t touch this stuff.


16. Corn

We are at the point where all corn products, including fresh corn should be avoided. The percentage of genetically modified corn is just far too high. You will never know if you are actually consuming organic corn. Modified cornstarch, dextrose, maltodextrin, and corn oil should all be avoided. All are high in omega-6 fatty acids, which can promote inflammation, cancer, and heart disease. While your body needs both omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids to perform at its full potential, most experts recommend an omega-6 to omega-3 ratio of 1:1–currently most Americans consume about 15-20 times more omega-6 acids than omega-3s.


17. Potassium Sorbate

As one of the most prolific preservatives in the food industry, it is difficult to find an ice cream without potassium sorbate. However, it is not only recommended to avoid this chemical, it’s a necessity to eliminate it from our foods. The food industry and its scientists will parrot endless myths that potassium sorbate is not a health threat because of its safety record and non-toxic profile. This could not be further from the truth.

Food and chemical toxicology reports have labeled potassium sorbate as a carcinogen, showing positive mutation results in the cells of mammals. Other studies have shown broad systemic and toxic effects on non-reproductive organs in animals. No long term studies have ever been initiated on either animals or humans, so there is simply not enough evidence to theorize what could happen after years of ingesting this preservative. However, based on short-term carcinogenic and toxic effects, is it worth the risk to find out?

18. Soy Lecithin


Soy Lecithin has been lingering around our food supply for over a century. It is an ingredient in literally hundreds of processed foods, and also sold as an over the counter health food supplement. However, most people don’t realize what soy lecithin actually is, and why the dangers of ingesting this additive far exceed its benefits.

Soybean lecithin comes from sludge left after crude soy oil goes through a “degumming” process. It is a waste product containing solvents and pesticides. The toxic hexane extraction process is what is commonly used in soybean oil manufacture today. Another big problem associated with soy lecithin comes from the origin of the soy itself. Look out for this emulsifier in ice creams, chocolate and many processed creams.


19. Polysorbate 80

Polysorbate 80 has been found to negatively affect the immune system and cause severe anaphylactic shock which can kill. Food and Chemical Toxicology has shown that Polysorbate 80 causes infertility. It accelerates maturing, causes changes to the vagina and womb lining, hormonal changes, ovary deformities and degenerative follicles. What is very suspicious about this ingredient is its addition to vaccines. Scientists are obviously aware of its ability to cause infertility yet it continues to appear in children’s vaccines. You will also commonly find this in a child’s favorite treat, ice cream.


20. Canola oil


Canola or rapeseed oil is poisonous to living things and is an excellent insect repellent. It is an industrial oil, not a food. It is a genetically modified plant designed through intensive breeding and genetic engineering techniques. The Canadian government and industry paid the FDA $50 million dollars to have canola oil placed on the (GRAS) List, “Generally Recognized As Safe”. It is becoming increasingly difficult to find products that do not contain Canola oil. Please do not buy any food product containing canola oil.


Marco Torres is a research specialist, writer and consumer advocate for healthy lifestyles. He holds degrees in Public Health and Environmental Science and is a professional speaker on topics such as disease prevention, environmental toxins and health policy.


Reference Sources 89, 106, 101, 116, 151, 170


15 thoughts on “20 Ingredients To Memorize and Avoid In ANY Food You Consume

  1. It’s a challenge to eat unprocessed, organic, “real” food. What I mean is, it takes way more time to prepare the foods yourself, than to conveniently buy them already prepared or in a mix. I spent many years using processed food to help save me time and I thought nothing of it. I was taught that “some vitamins” are lost in processing, but that they are still “pretty good for you.” This was a lie. Unfortunately, I built my life around the assumption that meal preparation would only take me about an hour a day (for all meals). That is unrealistic and impossible when you make it all yourself, from scratch. I now am in the process of trying to restructure my life so that I can prepare more food myself, but it is challenging. I just mean, there is a very real factor of limited time for myself and many others.

    I wish there were a structure in place for cooperative cooking, to help share this workload, so that it would be possible for many people to eat freshly prepared, whole and real/clean foods.

    I believe our society has gradually been pushed to depend on the convenience of processed foods. One example I will give is women being pushed to enter the workforce (this is a gradual, frog slowly boiling to death thing). At this point, many families are dependent on both parents working. So who has the time to do the necessary cooking?

    Not that we even remember how. Many people younger than I am grew up without the benefit of learning how to cook, either from a parent or from a home ec class. We have a lot of work ahead of us.

    This is an excellent list, very well described. Thank you for posting it.

    1. EE what u say is so true….it takes a lot of time.
      I raise Chickn’s and Goats for meat and eggs and Plant a large garden (actualy 3 spots) every year. Between that an keeping the maint. up on this shack,..mowing the fields…clearing brush..tilling, weeding and composting chicken shit and left overs…..and then canning and dehydrating all the food….It leaves very little time for anything else. Im a good Cajun cook so we do lots of 1-pot meals ’round here…no time for the 4 course “real” stuff.
      Even though we grow or try to,..most of our food, there are unproductive years like this year…..lost most of it due to too much rain and cooler temps than normal. So now then we have nothing to put up for stock…or way less than needed. To make up for it we hit the “cheap-o” dented can food stores to make up for the lose.
      And yep…its all gmo/processed garbage…..

      1. oldvet, I really admire what you are doing — way more than I think I will ever be able to do, with the raising of animals, as well. I am, though, learning to identify wild plants for food and medicine and grow some myself. I do really wish for a cooperative sort of work-sharing community, where I could trade my knowledge and herbs for some eggs, for example, or a pot of good Cajun cooking! 🙂

        I think it is insane for each individual family or person to be entirely “self” sufficient. Individuals specializing in certain areas and sharing and trading skills and products seems to me to make way more workable sense.

        And I know this is a workable model that has worked plenty in the past, but we have strayed so far away from it that it can be hard to envision how to get to it.

        Yeah, I know that where I live, I am not around this much (near DC). Maybe time to move away soon…

        1. And its much harder than most modern people realize. I know you have heard endless dribble from folk who seem to think since they have a case of MRE’s and a good rifle that they are set to go…nothing farther from the truth. Same with people who have bug out location but dont live there. Going there to camp a time or two a year isnt like depending on it daily from now on……What happens when grid down leaves you with out power to drive your well?…They dont have backups.
          When I purchased this stead a few years ago I bought plenty of power tools to transform it to our getaway homestead…then I got smart and obtained old fashioned HAND operated tools……another time eater. Not enough daylite.
          We are not yet off grid….and I may no bones about the fact that we can not supply ALL our needs…….it will take small communities or groups like what you are saying just to maintain ANY semblance of life after it hits the fan……..dayum if I want to be a cave dweller….but I wont just roll over and die either.
          You are on the right mind set in what you are planning and wishing for…….dont worry to much yet about not having help….it will eventual show up but dont let it detain you from a good start…..you may end up being the “go-to” person with knowledge when the lites do go out!!

          🙂 keep the spirit alive.

          1. I do wonder sometimes if those of us past a certain age will be valued for our knowledge and skills. Or if we will be given but a quick, dismissive glance and disposed of (not knowing what they disposed of).

            It takes a lifetime to develop those. I am still developing, still learning, but like you say about the hand tools…. I am drawn to that and none of it scares me. Also that it takes time to get to know how to live off the land, off the grid. At least I am old enough to have learned some things the old fashioned way, but not that old — plenty of good years left, I hope! 🙂

  2. EE and Oldvet
    Glad to see we know the difference between what we think we know and real world.

    In the real world I/we live in a semi rural area just far out enough from the big city to have to go there to work and do any major shopping, things we can’t get locally.

    We grow much of our own utilizing flower beds and front yard to grow veggies and I am sure the neighbors think we’re nuts because they have such pristine and well maintained yards and we have blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, asparagus grapes apple and pear tree growing on the perimeter and raised beds around the house. It is a lot of work for two well aged people.

    Since we live within city boundaries raising chickens is out of the question, God forbid the chickens should cackle.. We can and dehydrate much and I feel we are turning into vegetarians which I am not against, but I am a carnivore and like meat. Deer are getting really scarce and much of the land around us are farms and the farmers pick off the local deer. Some farms have stands were we can buy bulk vegs to put up but they are just as expensive as the stores. We try to not eat refined sugar and use honey but the price of local honey has soared. Making cheese is time consuming and expensive and making wine the fruit of our labor is nice.

    I collected quite a few hand powered tools which lie around gathering dust. When I was younger I had the vision and could build almost anything.

    In the long run I think We will be better off then most when the SHTF. We are well armed and would really hate to shoot anyone who steals from us when all they have to do is ask. I could never let kids go hungry. Adults can come pick weeds here.

    I really admire Henry for keeping the trench up and running, Thanks Henry
    Some really fine people are found in this trench. It’s too bad we all live so far away from each other if we all lived closer we would make a great state.

    1. Aaah, I could use a deer hunter or two here (except it is against the law). They have overrun our suburban neighborhood and are eating my garden! 🙁 This liberal county seeks “humane” ways of dealing with the “deer problem.” That means, discuss in committee and do nothing… er, maybe contraceptive darts…

      1. Or you could adapt and oil filter the barrel of a rifle to suppress the noise and be stealthily after dark. Just don’t get caught.

        1. Yup on the can method…….think on a good compound bow also…..very good to have.

          I have plenty deer here that used to destroy my gardens….I ran fencing and hot wire but the deer can jump an 8 to 10 ft fence if it wants your peas or lettuce bad enough. Trick I learned a cpl years ago was to hang aluminum foil strips smeared with p-nut butter off the hot wire (lectric fence),..deer cant seem to resist P-nut butter…..they go up and lick it………just one time! LOL.. doesnt kill’em…but they shy away from the area now.

  3. The worst of it is in this area of far west Texas it is almost impossible to go without cooking/eating Mexican food–all made with at least 95 percent assurity with GMO corn. Mexico (good for them!) recently banned all GMO corn products. May have to order and purchase corn tortillas made in Mexico from now on to make enchiladas, etc. Because strictly organic foods from companies like “Garden of Eatin'” (which makes awesome corn chips, esp. Red Hot Blues) gets very expensive (a bag of Red Hot Blues in the supermarket is 8 bucks!). And if you like pancakes, etc., only pure maple syrup (preferably from Canada) should be used…and it is a whopping 30 bucks a quart!

    Since us little people will (own a farm or not, garden or not) likely be forced to eat at least of few of the above toxins, the only other alternative is if you are Christian, ask God/YHWH/Jehova whatever to bless the food and asking Him to cancel out the toxins in it. But avoid as much junk as possible…never abuse the prayer privilege….

  4. DL
    Mexico (good for them!) recently banned all GMO corn products? What does that say about the FDA? Mexicans and Europeans are smarted the Feds here. Too many Zionist running this country.

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