I’ll be honest, I don’t really eat ice cream. In fact, the few times I have had some in the past several years it didn’t sit right with me. I almost always got an immediate stomach ache that lasted for hours. And I knew it had nothing to do with the dairy as dairy still pops up in my diet from time to time without the same effect. I always thought it was the culmination of diary and sugar… but it may actually be more.
Recently, in my holistic nutrition masters program I came across some really startling information about ice cream. So much so that I HAVE to pass it on so you can be informed. Ice cream is as common as pizza in our society and a “treat” that kids regularly consume. But we really need to reconsider this summer staple and the effect it may be having on our family.
Most commercial brands of ice cream contain chemicals that are not listed on their labels. Chemicals that are making individuals sick and do not belong in our food supply. The FDA does not require the listing of these ingredients due to: USDA reg 21 CFR 101.100. These ingredients also fall under the GRAS guidelines (generally recognized as safe). GRAS was created in an effort to approve food items more quickly without having to go through the time and money it takes to ensure these ingredients are actually safe. The FDA explains GRAS this way…
…any substance that is intentionally added to food is a food additive, that is subject to premarket review and approval by FDA, unless the substance is generally recognized, among qualified experts, as having been adequately shown to be safe under the conditions of its intended use, or unless the use of the substance is otherwise excluded from the definition of a food additive.
The GRAS guidelines were developed in 1958 and exempts food manufacturers from having to test any additives that fall under GRAS. In order for a food additive to establish GRAS, the proposed additive must show that there is a “consensus of expert opinion” regarding the safety of the use of that substance under intended use. If there is “severe conflict” among experts in the safety of the substance, then it will not fall under GRAS recognition. Most of these additives have been “approved” by experts who were compensated by the industry or manufacturer trying to get the additive GRAS recognized. These manufacturers compensate many “experts” so that there will be a consensus of safety. In addition these experts state that the additives are safe under “intended use.” Unfortunately since these ingredients don’t have to be listed on products, you don’t really know how much you are consuming. These chemicals are not just in ice cream but in many processed foods. And when the American Diet contains fast food and other highly processed foods as a regularly ongoing occurrence, you can guarantee you are getting more than an “intended use” dosage of these chemicals.
So back to ice cream. The following are chemicals that regularly show up in store bought ice creams:
Diethylglycol: Used as an emulsifier instead of eggs. (Also used in antifreeze and in paint remover.)
Piperonal: Used in place of vanilla. (Also used to kill lice. Can cause central nervous system depression and is a skin irritant.)
Aldehyde C-17: Used to flavor cherry ice cream. (This is an inflammable liquid used in aniline dyes, plastic, and rubber.)
Ethyl Acetate: Used for pineapple flavoring. (Used as a cleaner for leather and textiles. The vapors have been known to cause chronic lung, liver, and heart damage.)
Butyraldehyde: Used as nut flavoring. (An ingredient in rubber cement. Is a skin irritant and impacts the cells important for reproduction.)
Amyl Acetate: Used in banana flavored ice cream. (Also an oil paint solvent. Can cause headaches, drowsiness, weakness, dizziness and even unconsciousness. May damage the liver.)
Benzyl Acetate: Used as strawberry flavoring. (A nitrate solvent. Can cause skin and gastrointestinal irritation.)
No more ice cream here! So many reasons to avoid processed foods. And to think, these are only the chemicals we know about. Who knows how many other chemicals are hidden in processed foods. And yet somehow our government can’t seem to understand why we are such a sick nation… Is there still really any question?
Enig, Mary G, PhD & Fallan, Sally, Nourishing Traditions; The Cookbook That Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats, New Trends Publishing, Inc., 2003