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The more we learn about processed foods, the worse it looks. All these foods touted as wholesome come out of the final review with troubling results.
We got rid of evil saturated fat and tropical oils by creating hydrogenated oils and trans fats, which are more evil than anything mother nature provided. Not only do they have all the drawbacks of sat fat, they go above and beyond it by interfering with detoxification pathways. Bad stuff indeed. Bring back the butter. Reformulations are underway, labels are being updated, damage has been done.
Take a fairly innocent potato, or other starchy food, and fry it or cook it at a high temperature, and you get a probable carcinogen, acrylamide.
Carmelize an onion, or anything with sugar in it, and you get advanced glycation end products...something you don't want running loose in your blood stream. Your body can produce these as well, just add high blood sugar with oxygen, and carmelize yourself on the insides.
That brings me to high fructose corn syrup. The marvel of food science that allowed manufacturers to cheaply sweeten everything under the sun, but contributes to the epidemic of diabetes and more of that aforementioned carmelization reaction, among other things.
Shock a protein with flash freezing or rapid heating and you form polyamines. A growth factor that can also lead to cancer.
Add ascorbic acid to benzoate preservatives, and you create benzene. Another carcinogen that has been lurking in many soft drinks and drink mixes until recent reformulations. News link
Boost a foods' protein content by adding gluten, or engineer wheat to contain more protein (gluten), and get an upsurge in celiac disease and related problems.
Then get that gluten from China, where they boosted the nitrogen content (a way of measuring protein content/gluten quality) and you get melamine poisoned pets.
Leach out every useful thing from corn, and find a place for every byproduct, and you get me...somebody who reacts to most every processed food under the sun. (citric acid, corn-alcohol based natural flavorings, xanthan gum, glucona delta lactone, ascorbic acid, etc. etc.) Am I alone? Not exactly, there are others. Am I a canary in a coal mine, signalling trouble ahead, or just an anomaly? In the future will corn even be fit for human consumption? It's certainly hard to contain GMO genes in a corn field, I know that much, so what's next? Will we undo the so-called progress of the green revolution by going so far as to render those foods inedible that we once manipulated into feeding the world's growing human population? I hope not, but progress marches forward, and doesn't seem to remember where the brake pedal is.