Product recalls and processed foods

For a few years  now I’ve been really watching what I eat, trying to avoid processed foods and things with artificial colors, flavors and preservatives like Sodium Benzoate. There are a lot of reasons: a problem with skin rashes, reading books like The Omnivore’s Dilemma and Holy Cow.

But honestly, once I read a few labels I was convinced.

Try for one day to avoid just artificial colors or flavors. It’s almost impossible.

As part of my writing as the Rochester Dog Health Examiner, I’ve been watching product recalls for dog food. But this week there have been a whole bunch of recalls of people foods and seasoning mixes because of a suspected Salmonella contamination of HVP (hydrolyzed vegetable protein).

From Four Seasons dressing mixes to Quaker Snack Mix Baked Cheddar to Dean’s Dip to Pringles Restaurant Cravers Cheeseburger potato crisps and Pringles Family Faves Taco Night potato crisps.

Did you know about those recalls?

From one press release:

Salmonella is a common food borne pathogen that can cause severe illnesses, including fever, abdominal cramps and diarrhea. While most individuals recover without medical intervention, the infection can be life-threatening in some cases such as young children, the elderly and those with compromised immune systems.

Obviously it’s impossible to avoid processed food, and Salmonella is a common problem. But the more you rely on a massive processed food industry to provide almost everything you eat, the more chances there will be for illness.

Just something to think about. If you’re at all interested in your food, I suggest you check out:

The Omnivore’s Dilemma, by Michael Pollan
The Eater’s Manifesto, by Michael Pollan
Holy Cow, by Hope Egan


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