8 Ingredients You Never Want to See on Your Nutrition Label


   Reblogged:from Yahoo Health                                                                                                                                                                                               8 Ingredients You Never Want to See on Your Nutrition Label          

The year was 1950, and The Magic 8-Ball had just arrived in stores. It looked like a toy, but it wasn’t. It was a future-telling device, powered by the unknown superpowers that lived inside its cheap plastic shell. Despite a bit of an attitude—”Don’t count on it,” “My reply is no”—it was a huge success. Americans, apparently, want to see their futures.

A few decades later, Congress passed the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act that, among other things, turned the 45,000 food products in the average supermarket into fortune-telling devices. Americans inexplicably yawned. I’m trying to change that. Why? The nutrition label can predict the future size of your pants and health care bills.

Unfortunately, these labels aren’t as clear and direct as the Magic 8-Ball. Consider the list of ingredients: The Food and Drug Administration has approved more than 3,000 additives, most of which you’ve never heard of. But the truth is, you don’t have to know them all. You just need to be able to parse out the bad stuff. Do that and you’ll have a pretty good idea how your future will shape up—whether you’ll end up overweight and unhealthy or turn out to be fit, happy, and energized.

While researching the new Eat This, Not That! 2013: The No-Diet Weight Loss Solution, I identified 8 ingredients you never want to see on the nutrition label. Should you put down products that contain them? As the Magic 8-Ball would say: Signs point to yes.

BHA

This preservative is used to prevent rancidity in foods that contain oils. Unfortunately, BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) has been shown to cause cancer in rats, mice, and hamsters. The reason the FDA hasn’t banned it is largely technical—the cancers all occurred in the rodents’ forestomachs, an organ that humans don’t have. Nevertheless, the study, published in the Japanese Journal of Cancer Research, concluded that BHA was “reasonably anticipated to be a carcinogen,” and as far as I’m concerned, that’s reason enough to eliminate it from your diet.

You’ll find it in: Fruity Pebbles, Cocoa Pebbles

Parabens

These synthetic preservatives are used to inhibit mold and yeast in food. The problem is parabens may also disrupt your body’s hormonal balance. A study in Food Chemical Toxicology found that daily ingestion decreased sperm and testosterone production in rats, and parabens have been found present in breast cancer tissues.

You’ll find it in: Baskin-Robbins sundaes

Partially Hydrogenated Oil

I’ve harped on this before, but it bears repeating: Don’t confuse “0 g trans fat” with being trans fat-free. The FDA allows products to claim zero grams of trans fat as long as they have less than half a gram per serving. That means they can have 0.49 grams per serving and still be labeled a no-trans-fat food. Considering that two grams is the absolute most you ought to consume in a day, those fractions can quickly add up. The telltale sign that your snack is soiled with the stuff? Look for partially hydrogenated oil on the ingredient statement. If it’s anywhere on there, then you’re ingesting artery-clogging trans fat.

You’ll find it in: Long John Silver’s Popcorn Shrimp, Celeste frozen pizzas

FIGHT FAT WITH FAT! Some fats, like trans fat, will pad you with extra pounds, but other types can help you shed unwanted weight. See for yourself—pick up these 5 Fatty Foods that Make You Skinny today!

Sodium Nitrite

Nitrites and nitrates are used to inhibit botulism-causing bacteria and to maintain processed meats’ pink hues, which is why the FDA allows their use. Unfortunately, once ingested, nitrite can fuse with amino acids (of which meat is a prime source) to form nitrosamines, powerful carcinogenic compounds. Ascorbic and erythorbic acids—essentially vitamin C—have been shown to decrease the risk, and most manufacturers now add one or both to their products, which has helped. Still, the best way to reduce risk is to limit your intake.

You’ll find it in: Oscar Mayer hot dogs, Hormel bacon

Caramel Coloring

This additive wouldn’t be dangerous if you made it the old-fashioned way—with water and sugar, on top of a stove. But the food industry follows a different recipe: They treat sugar with ammonia, which can produce some nasty carcinogens. How carcinogenic are these compounds? A Center for Science in the Public Interest report asserted that the high levels of caramel color found in soda account for roughly 15,000 cancers in the U.S. annually. Another good reason to scrap soft drinks? They’re among The 20 Worst Drinks in America.

You’ll find it in: Coke/Diet Coke, Pepsi/Diet Pepsi

Castoreum

Castoreum is one of the many nebulous “natural ingredients” used to flavor food. Though it isn’t harmful, it is unsettling. Castoreum is a substance made from beavers’ castor sacs, or anal scent glands. These glands produce potent secretions that help the animals mark their territory in the wild. In the food industry, however, 1,000 pounds of the unsavory ingredient are used annually to imbue foods—usually vanilla or raspberry flavored—with a distinctive, musky flavor.

You’ll find it in: Potentially any food containing “natural ingredients”

Food Dyes

Plenty of fruit-flavored candies and sugary cereals don’t contain a single gram of produce, but instead rely on artificial dyes and flavorings to suggest a relationship with nature. Not only do these dyes allow manufacturers to mask the drab colors of heavily processed foods, but certain hues have been linked to more serious ailments. A Journal of Pediatrics study linked Yellow 5 to hyperactivity in children, Canadian researchers found Yellow 6 and Red 40 to be contaminated with known carcinogens, and Red 3 is known to cause tumors. The bottom line? Avoid artificial dyes as much as possible.

You’ll find it in: Lucky Charms, Skittles, Jell-O

THE DOMINO EFFECT: Sugar doesn’t just come in the form of cookies and candy. Discover the insidious ways it can creep into your diet with 9 Sneaky Sources of Sugar.

Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein

Hydrolyzed vegetable protein, used as a flavor enhancer, is plant protein that has been chemically broken down into amino acids. One of these acids, glutamic acid, can release free glutamate. When this glutamate joins with free sodium in your body, they form monosodium glutamate (MSG), an additive known to cause adverse reactions—headaches, nausea, and weakness, among others—in sensitive individuals. When MSG is added to products directly, the FDA requires manufacturers to disclose its inclusion on the ingredient statement. But when it occurs as a byproduct of hydrolyzed protein, the FDA allows it to go unrecognized

  

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Warning on Hydroxycut Products


Reblogged:from everyday Health                                                                                                                                                                                Warning on Hydroxycut Products  Content provided by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Hydroxycut drink mix packet

Hydroxycut products are dietary supplements that are marketed for weight loss, as fat burners, as energy-enhancers, as low carb diet aids, and for water loss under the Iovate and MuscleTech brand names.

Day 57/365 - Hydroxycut
Day 57/365 – Hydroxycut (Photo credit: Newbirth35)

Serious Health Risks

FDA has received 23 reports of serious health problems ranging from jaundice and elevated liver enzymes, an indicator of potential liver injury, to liver damage requiring liver transplant. One death due to liver failure has been reported to the FDA.

Liver injury, although rare, was reported by patients at the doses of Hydroxycut recommended on the bottle. Symptoms of liver injury include jaundice (yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes) and brown urine. Other symptoms include nausea, vomiting, light-colored stools, excessive fatigue, weakness, stomach or abdominal pain, itching, and loss of appetite.

Other health problems reported include seizures; cardiovascular disorders; and rhabdomyolysis, a type of muscle damage that can lead to other serious health problems such as kidney failure.

FDA urges consumers to stop using Hydroxycut products in order to avoid any undue risk, says Linda Katz, M.D., interim chief medical officer of FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. “Adverse events are rare, but exist,” Katz says. “Consumers should consult a physician or other health care professional if they are experiencing symptoms possibly associated with these products.

Recalled Products

The list of products being recalled by Iovate currently includes:

  • Hydroxycut Regular Rapid Release Caplets
  • Hydroxycut Caffeine-Free Rapid Release Caplets
  • Hydroxycut Hardcore Liquid Caplets
  • Hydroxycut Max Liquid Caplets
  • Hydroxycut Regular Drink Packets
  • Hydroxycut Caffeine-Free Drink Packets
  • Hydroxycut Hardcore Drink Packets (Ignition Stix)
  • Hydroxycut Max Drink Packets
  • Hydroxycut Liquid Shots
  • Hydroxycut Hardcore RTDs (Ready-to-Drink)
  • Hydroxycut Max Aqua Shed
  • Hydroxycut 24
  • Hydroxycut Carb Control
  • Hydroxycut Natural

Although FDA has not received reports of serious liver-related adverse reactions for all Hydroxycut products, Iovate has agreed to recall all the products listed above. Hydroxycut Cleanse and Hoodia products are not affected by the recall.

Consumers who have these products are advised to stop using them and to return them to the place of purchase. The agency has not yet determined which ingredients, dosages, or other health-related factors may be associated with risks related to these Hydroxycut products. The products contain a variety of ingredients and herbal extracts.

Health care professionals and consumers are encouraged to report serious adverse events (side effects) or product quality problems with the use of these products to FDA’s MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online, by regular mail, fax or phone.

Online: Medwatch Reporting Regular Mail: Use FDA postage paid form 3500 (link-dead) and mail to MedWatch, 5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, MD 20852-9787 Fax: 800-FDA-0178 Phone: 800-FDA-1088

FDA continues to investigate the potential relationship between Hydroxycut dietary supplements and liver injury or other potentially serious side effects.

 

FDA approves first new weight-loss pill in decade


Breaking News from Yahoo Health   

English: Logo of the U.S. Food and Drug Admini...

English: Logo of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (2006) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WASHINGTON (AP) —                                                         The Food and Drug Administration has approved Arena Pharmaceutical’s anti-obesity pill Belviq, the first new prescription drug for long-term weight loss to enter the U.S. market in over a decade. Despite only achieving modest weight loss in clinical studies, the drug appeared safe enough to win the FDA’s endorsement, amid calls from doctors for new weight-loss treatments. The agency cleared the pill Wednesday for adults who are obese or are overweight with at least one medical complication, such as diabetes or high cholesterol. The FDA denied approval for Arena’s drug in 2010 after scientists raised concerns about tumors that developed in animals studied with the drug. The company resubmitted the drug with additional data earlier this year, and the FDA said there was little risk of tumors in humans. With U.S. obesity rates nearing 35 percent of the adult population, many doctors have called on the FDA to approve new weight loss treatments. But a long line of prescription weight loss offerings have been associated with safety problems, most notably the fen-phen combination, which was linked to heart valve damage in 1997. The cocktail of phentermine and fenfluramine was a popular weight loss combination prescribed by doctors, though it was never approved by FDA. In a rare move, the FDA explicitly stated in a press release that Belviq “does not appear to activate” a chemical pathway that was linked to the heart problems seen with fen-phen. The FDA says the drug acts on a different chemical pathway in the brain, which is believed to reduce appetite by boosting feelings of satiety and fullness. Belviq is one of three experimental weight-loss drugs whose developers have been trying for a second time to win approval, after the FDA shot them all down in 2010 or early 2011 because of serious potential side effects. Vivus Inc.‘s Qnexa is thought to be the most promising of the drugs, achieving the most weight loss. But the FDA has delayed a decision on that pill until July. Shares of San Diego-based Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc. jumped $3.03, or 34 percent, to $11.88 in trading Wednesday afternoon. Arena’s studies showed that patients taking Belviq, known generically as lorcaserin, had modest weight loss. On average patients lost just 3 to 3.7 percent of their starting body weight over a year. About 47 percent of patients without diabetes lost at least 5 percent of their weight or more, which was enough to meet FDA standards for effectiveness. By comparison, average weight loss with Qnexa is 11 percent, with more than 83 percent of patients losing 5 percent of their weight or more. Side effects with the drug include depression, migraine and memory lapses. In May a panel of expert advisers to the FDA voted 18-4 to recommend approval of Arena’s drug, concluding that its benefits “outweigh the potential risks when used long-term” in overweight and obese people. Experts say the challenge of weight loss drug development lies in safely turning off one of the body’s fundamental directives: to eat enough food to maintain its current weight. While several drugs are available for short-term weight loss, until Wednesday there was only one FDA-approved prescription drug for long-term weight loss: Xenical from Roche, which is seldom prescribed because unpleasant digestive side effects and modest weight loss. Other safety failures for diet pills have continued to pile up in recent years. Four years ago Sanofi-Aventis SA discontinued studies of its highly anticipated pill Acomplia due to psychiatric side effects, including depression and suicidal thoughts. In 2010, Abbott Laboratories withdrew its drug Meridia after a study showed it increased heart attack and stroke.

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Understanding Foods Labels


Understanding nutrition claims and market tricks will allow the average shopper to make quick, healthy choices without spending hours comparing labels. Certain claims on packaged items are regulated by the FDA. A product with the following statements must abide by several restrictions,Fat Free:Less than half a gram of fat per serving,Low Calorie: No more than 40 calories per serving, Sugar Free:Less than half a gram of sugar per serving,Low Sodium: No more than 140 mg of sodium per serving,High, rich in, excellent source of: 20 percent or more of the recommended daily value of the nutrient,Less,fewer,reduced: 25 percent or less of the named nutrient, Here are some other marketing terms that aren’t standardized by the FDA.Organic: Must meet the USDA standards for organic production, without most synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, growth hormones, antibiotics and genetically engineered ingredients. Being labeled “organic” has nothing to do with the calorie, fat or sugar content of a food. I recommend going organic for particular fruits and vegetables especially those that are considered part of the “dirty dozen.”Natural: Only regulated by the FDA for meat and poultry products.  This label means “no artificial substances.”  Companies use the term “natural” on their products hoping that it will catch the eye of a health-conscious consumer; the product may not be superior to its competition.Local: Not a monitored claim. Shop at markets and nearby farms to know that your food is coming from a “local” source. Free Range:  A USDA definition for eggs and poultry where chickens have “access to the outside,” no other specific spatial restrictions are given.”Free range” beef and pork labels are not regulated. Know your manufacturer and the company background to be safe about your meat choices. Made with Whole Grains: A general term with a broad meaning.The product may be 99 percent refined grains, while 1 percent is actually whole grains. “Multigrain” is another overused word stating that the food is made with several grains.  At least half of all grains eaten should be whole grains; make sure that “whole” is contained in the ingredient list. Lightly sweetened: Another expression that is not controlled.Lightly sweetened is variable, depending on the size of your sweet tooth! Fiber: A product “high in fiber” may contain the isolated, added fibers such as inulin, maltodextrin and polydextrose; these types haven’t been proven to offer the health benefits from fiber found in fruits, vegetables and whole grains.Be wary of packaged foods that claim to be the newest, ultra-healthy solution. Cookies, cakes and snack foods are just that.They won’t ever replace your best choices: whole foods with real ingredients.                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Loss Weight, diet, Dieting, Weight Loss Tips, weight loss programs, dieting programs, Top Weight loss, Health, Portion Control, Food, Human nutrition, Eating, Nutrition, Physical exercise, Fitness, Programs, Calorie