The Key to Healthy Eating: Moderation and Freshness

Basically, one of the best ways to maintain your health is to avoid too concentrated, too frequent consumption of processed foods, and to consume as few food additives as possible.
  Recently, there seem to be more and more topics related to food safety. Firstly, the hot discussion caused by “non-sugar sweeteners are harmful” continued to ferment; then, whether quick-frozen shrimps became hypertrophic after adding compound phosphate “water-retaining agent” was harmful, and whether drinking water in plastic cups would cause a lot of plasticization Doubts such as antiseptics also emerged; subsequently, aspartame, an artificially synthesized sweetener commonly found in various sugar-free foods and beverages, was pushed to the forefront because of its “possible carcinogenicity”.
  As far as “problems” similar in nature to this type of topic are raised, there has been almost no interruption in the past 20 years. Fortunately, when new issues are raised, more and more experts are able to speak up in time to clarify the public’s doubts and avoid some misunderstandings and rumors.
  For example, with regard to aspartame, due to extensive evaluation and research conducted over the years, it is generally considered safe to use within a reasonable range (except for patients with phenylketonuria who cannot consume aspartame as a sweetener). food), does not cause cancer. On the other hand, the sweetness of aspartame is extremely high (200 times that of the equivalent amount of sucrose), so the actual amount used in food is very small, and the amount of methanol produced in the human body is also very small, which cannot reach the level of poisoning. degree.
  The same is true for phosphate, which widely exists in various meat products, surimi products, rice noodle food, condiments and various beverages. The state has established strict and detailed standards for its use range and dosage. As the experts emphasized, when evaluating the safety of food additives, the extreme situation of “lifetime, daily, high intake” has been fully considered. That is to say, the national standards are “calculating the general ledger” when specifying the scope and amount of food additives used, including the so-called “superimposed effect” that people usually worry about.
  Take aspartame as an example, the acceptable daily intake specified by food additive authorities is 40 mg per kg of body weight. Taking a person weighing 60 kg as an example, based on the maximum allowable addition amount, he needs to drink 12 mg per day. Cans of sweetened beverages have the potential to cause health damage. Therefore, the public need not worry too much.
  In fact, food safety is relative, and there is no absolutely safe food. It is absolutely impossible to realize that the chemical components contained in food are completely non-toxic; whether they are harmful or harmless depends to a large extent on their usage, usage conditions and usage methods. Generally speaking, for the use of a food additive, the “risk-benefit” factors are often considered comprehensively, and the lesser of two evils is chosen.
  For example, nitrite, the most widely used food preservative in the world today, can protect the color of meat (keep the pink color of fresh meat) and effectively inhibit botulism (a highly toxic bacteria) role. However, nitrite also reacts chemically with amines to generate carcinogenic nitrosamines. Until a suitable substitute is found, the role of effectively maintaining meat safety can only be played by nitrite for the time being, although it is known to be the most toxic food additive.
  The balance of risks, pros and cons of food additive applications is too numerous to mention. Sometimes, when one kind of risk goes down, another kind of risk will rise again. The trade-offs in this are also closely related to the changes in people’s health concepts. For example, in the past, due to the high salinity (about 20%) of soy sauce, bacteria were not easy to grow, so there was no need to add preservatives. But now a low-salt diet is advocated and popular, and the salinity of soy sauce is usually around 11%, so a certain shelf life cannot be guaranteed without adding preservatives.
  Then again, fundamentally, one of the best ways to maintain your health is to avoid too concentrated, too frequent consumption of processed foods, and to consume as little food additives as possible; instead of panicking over certain food additives , why don’t you bother to buy fresh and natural food with a short shelf life and simple taste and color. In this way, the intake of food additives can be reduced naturally.

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