Everyone knows that McDonald’s food is unhealthy, yet affordable. But, what you probably don’t know is how unhealthy it can be and if the low prices are worth the health effects. Well, it’s certainly not the place to seek nutritional health.
Despite the numerous studies associating McDonald’s food directly with serious health problems, such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes, this company keeps on serving billions of people all around the world.
The success of McDonald’s is mainly due to its availability, as you can find it even on college campuses, off rural highways, and in every airport.
What’s truly frightening is the global addiction to this fast food chain, and assuming that McDonald’s is going to stick around for a very long time, then maybe it’s time to know what kind of ingredients they’re feeding you.
(You’ll probably never come near this popular brand after reading this article)
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The items on a McDonald’s menu might slightly differ from one country to another, but there is one common fried food that can be found worldwide: McDonald’s fries, which all contain a toxic ingredient called acrylamide.
In fact, acrylamide is not an added ingredients, it’s the result of frying food. Acrylamide levels are very high in fried potatoes, moreover, McDonald’s uses frying as their most common cooking method. How long a food is cooked can affect acrylamide levels.
Although the ongoing debate over the link between acrylamide and cancer, this chemical is included on the Proposition 65 list, which is a Californian list of chemicals known to cause reproductive toxicity and cancer. Furthermore, acrylamide is a chemical which may be a human carcinogen according to the National Toxicology Program.
Almost all McDonald’s-made buns consist of toxic ingredients which are used to enhance the dough’s texture. This company uses azodicarbonamide in all their buns, from the McRib to the sesame bun. This chemical is also a blowing agent for rubbers and plastics as well as a popular food additive, moreover, it can even be found in some tobacco products.
In fact, azodicarbonamide is banned from use in McDonald’s buns in the UK, Australia, and most European countries. What’s more surprising is that using this food additive in Singapore can even result in a 15-year prison sentence and a fine of hundreds of dollars.
3. Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate
Sodium acid pyrophosphate (SAPP) is commonly used as a leavening agent (substance causing expansion of batters and doughs). According to The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CPSI), overconsumption of phosphates can cause dietary imbalances that may lead to osteoporosis.
In fact, SAPP can be found in McDonald’s eggs and tortillas, hash browns, and other products. In its whole form, SAPP can cause serious health problems, such as severe inflammation in case it is ingested, inhaled, or comes in contact with your eyes or skin.
Dimethylpolysiloxane is commonly added to cooking oils. In McDonald’s, it’s used as an anti-foaming agent to cook French fries, Chicken McNuggets, and Filet-o-Fish. Shockingly, you can also find this toxic chemical in hair conditioners, breast implants, lotions and hygiene products, as well as in makeup, nail polish, contact lens solutions, sunscreens, deodorants, and shampoos.
A much healthier alternative would be a homemade recipe for chicken nuggets, French fries, or whatever food you desire. At least you’d ensure that it’s free from toxic ingredients.
McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets are actually cooked in a vegetable oil containing TBHQ (tertiary butylhydroquinone), a chemical preservative as well as a petroleum-based product that can also be found in cosmetic products.
The FDA allows food to contain no more than 0.02% of the oil in one nugget, which is perhaps good, considering that ingesting 1 gram of TBHQ can cause collapse, a sense of suffocation, ear ringing, delirium, nausea, and vomiting, while 5 grams of TBHQ can even kill you. So you may want to consider learning to make your own homemade chicken nuggets instead of consuming harmful ingredients.
6. Sodium Aluminum Phosphate
Sodium aluminum phosphate is a food additive that’s used in the batter of Chicken McNuggets. According to multiple studies published in health pages, sodium aluminum phosphate is possibly linked to the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.
Although sodium phosphate has been banned from the ingredient list of the meat part of the nugget, sodium aluminum phosphate, as well as other phosphates, is still being used in the leavening of the McNuggets breaded coating. The difference is only in the purpose of the phosphates.
7. Sodium Benzoate
McDonald’s uses sodium benzoate in many of their sauces and in most of their soft beverages. According to a UK-study, consuming a combination of sodium benzoate and artificial food colors can be associated with increased hyperactivity in kids. To protect the health of your children, it is recommended to completely avoid foods which contain such ingredients.
8. Disodium 5’-ribonucleotides
Disodium 5’-ribonucleotides is used in McDonald’s chicken products and some of their sauces as well. Disodium guanylate, a compound in disodium 5’-ribonucleotides, is especially dangerous for babies under 3 months old and should be entirely avoided by individuals who suffer from gout or asthma.
9. Sodium Metabisulfite
McDonald’s uses sodium metabisulfite in their tortillas to enhance the dough. This toxic ingredient is known to cause allergic reactions in individuals who are sensitive to sulfate.
In fact, sulfates may be related to certain diseases and health problems, including brain fog, joint pain, bloating, diabetes, lethargy, and skin diseases. It will probably shock you to know that sodium metabisulfite is also used as a bleaching agent in coconut cream and in waste treatment.
10. High-Fructose Corn Syrup
If you happen to wonder why you’ve been eating at McDonald’s maybe for years but you’ve never experienced the health problems we’re talking about, then you should know that there is a hardworking PR campaign behind this company that constantly tries to reduce the negative health effects caused by these toxic ingredients.
They claim on their official website that high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) which is used in many of their products has a sugar-like composition. In addition to trying to normalize the use of HFCS by saying that it’s also used in too many common products found in your grocery store. This shouldn’t fool you to avoid the fact that there are well-documented and serious negative health effects due to HFCS consumption.
Most of the McDonald’s toxic ingredients are lurking in their sauces, bread, and cooking oils. McDonald’s food, especially the chemicals within, is something that you really don’t want to eat or give to your children.
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