Health-boosting supplements have steadily increased in popularity over the last several years. It’s really no surprise that many supermarkets and other retailers have done their best to cash in, but many people do not realize that cheaper alternatives to natural, organic products often come with their own undisclosed price tags. What you may save in cash, you are likely to be making up for in toxins! There are many toxic ingredients that are commonly added to nutritional supplements. Here are some of the most frequently used additives to look out for:
GMO Ingredients: Many ingredients in both supplements and food contain GMO ingredients. Amino acids, aspartame, surcralose, citric acid, lactic acid, molasses, MSG, high fructose corn syrup, maltodextrin, yeast products, hydrolized vegetable protein and ascorbic acid are some of the ingredients to keep an eye out for. Not only are many of these ingredients harmful to your health, many of them are derived from GMO corn, in one way or another.
Hydrogenated Oils: Hydrogenated oils are loaded with trans fats and are often used as a filler in supplements, and may also be added to so-called “health foods.”
Artificial Colorings: These are often used to enhance the appearance of a food or supplement. They can be very toxic and have been linked to severe health issues such as birth defects, ADHD, and cancer.
Heavy Metals: Many supplements, protein shakes and other items contain hazardous heavy metals such as lead, aluminum, fluoride and arsenic. For example, a 2010 report by Consumer Reports found that several popular protein shakes, including Muscle Milk, contained worrisome amounts of four toxic heavy metals; mercury, cadmium, lead and arsenic. Muscle Milk was the only shake brand to have a product that contained concerning amounts of all four heavy metals.
Carrageenan: A commonly used filler in a variety of supplements, shakes and other foods, carrageenan has been linked to a variety of ailments. Digestive issues, leaky gut syndrome, and cancer are just a few of the more serious effects associated with its consumption.
Hexane-extracted Soy and Rice: Most of the “natural” rice and soy proteins that come from China are created with a chemical extractor known as hexane. Hexane is an extreme pollutant and highly explosive chemical that should be avoided.
Sodium Benzoate and BHT: Sodium benzoate is frequently-used preserative that can be found in sodas, processed foods and supplements. It is also carcinogenic and known to cause damage to DNA.
Boric Acid: For whatever reason, this ingredient is added to a great many supplements available today. However, it is known to be rather dangerous and can cause headaches, depression and birth defects.
The next time you go supplement shopping, remember to read the labels. Knowing what is in your food is so very important, especially in a world where even “health foods” can be toxic.