What’s Really in Your Food?
20110505

There are thousands of chemicals lurking in your food. From doughnuts to fresh produce, The Doctors reveals the toxic ingredients that may be lurking in your grocery bag. And, what you’re really getting in just one cup of pasta!

Hidden Chemicals
Does the average American actually know what he or she is eating? The Doctors and CBS 2/KCAL 9 health reporter Lisa Sigell investigate what's really in our food, and the findings are alarming.

A The Doctors investigation uncovers carcinogens and toxins in seemingly
harmless foods.

Would you eat anti-freeze? How about insects? The Doctors expose the shocking contents in some foods.

ER physician Dr. Travis Stork says that we are what we eat, which is why we should choose foods with natural ingredients .

For a list of foods you should buy organic, aka "The Dirty Dozen," click here!

More than two-thirds of Americans are overweight, and the number of people dealing with diabetes, cancer and behavioral disorders continues to climb.

The Doctors uncover some of the hidden and potentially dangerous ingredients in your food.

Propylene Glycol
It is generally used to absorb extra water and maintain moisture in food.
• Found in many baked goods, cake mixes, fast food tacos and even some salad dressings and condiments.
Found in anti-freeze, engine coolant and solutions to de-ice planes; also found in enamels and varnishes.
The United States Food and Drug Administration says the levels of propylene glycol in food is safe.
The FDA considers an average daily intake of 23 mg per kilogram of body weight to be safe for people 2 to 65 years old.
Study results are mixed.

Acrylamide
Cancer-causing chemical that forms in carbohydrate-rich foods, like potatoes, when fried or baked at very high temperatures.
High levels found in potato chips, crisps and french fries.
Found in cigarette smoke.
A 2005 study found the levels of acrylamide in potato chips exceed the levels allowed by the World Health Organization in a glass of water by 100 to 1,500 times.
Scientists estimate as many as 30 percent of cancer cases arise from dietary sources.

Bisphenol A (BPA)
Industrial chemical used primarily in the production of polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins.
High levels of BPA may lead to hormone problems, obesity, diabetes, heart disease and liver toxicity.
A Johns Hopkins University Study found elevated levels of BPA in pregnant women lead to babies with smaller head circumference and lower birth weights.
BPA is banned in the European Union.
In the US, effort has been made to eliminate BPA from baby bottles and water bottles, but it is still found in the linings of food cans and containers.

Food Dyes
Every year, 15 million pounds of dye is put into food marketed toward children, but most people don't realize that these harmful additives have been linked to behavioral problems like ADHD and inflammatory problems such as allergies. The popular dye Red #3 has also been acknowledged by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a carcinogen, but is still found in some processed foods.

Dangerous Food Dyes to Avoid
•Red #40
• Red #3
• Yellow #5
• Yellow #6

• Blue #1


Food Label Tips

The first five ingredients listed on a nutrition label are the main components of the food you're eating. Choose your foods wisely by remembering these three label tricks:
• Any ingredient that ends with "ose," such as fructose, is another word for sugar and sweeteners, and should be avoided.
• Monosodium glutamate, popularly known as MSG, is an unhealthy preservative.
• Enriched means the product lost its nutrients through processing and they are restored artificially.



Bacteria on Your Food
In general, food begins to grow bacteria when left out for more than two hours. The Doctors examine how a green salad, sushi, rotisserie chicken and guacamole compare in bacteria levels when unrefrigerated for a prolonged period of time.


Eat Well: It's Easier than You Think!

Preparing fresh foods and staying calorie conscious can cut down on many food dangers.

Celebrity Chef Cristina Ferrare demonstrates how to put a healthy dinner on the table.

T he Doctors and Everyday Health reveal how many calories you're really eating, and how to cut them in half.


• The Doctors try the newest trends in appetizers and desserts.

I Care

Every 15 minutes, someone in the United States takes his or her own life. Students at Franklin Pierce University wanted to raise awareness with a public service announcement. Television and film students Alex, Erica, Zach and Logan wanted their message to connect not just with the person that may be contemplating suicide, but each of us, who has the ability to say, "I care." 

As many as one in four Americans suffer from depression, and symptoms include:
• Loss of interest and passion.
• Feelings of helplessness or hopelessness.
Fatigue.
• Irritability.
• Unexplained aches and pains.
• Appetite or weight changes.

• Changes in sleep patterns.

Suicide can be prevented by knowing the warning signs:
• Exhibiting signs of depression.
• Talking about suicide or death.
• Making statements of worthlessness like "It would be better if I wasn't here," or "I want out."
• Abrupt mood swings, from extreme sadness to happiness or calm.

• Engaging in risk-taking behavior, such as driving too fast.

If you, or someone you know needs help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK.

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