How to Read Labels to Avoid Harmful Ingredients
1. Important Numbers (8, 4, and 9): The stickers with corresponding bar codes, six-digit numbers, can be found on all produce and are crucial for all shoppers. Codes that begin with 8 signify the genetically altered or engineered process. Organic products have codes that start with 9 while 4 constitutes that the product was treated chemically with an herbicide, pesticide or both. Example: Genetically Altered: 843214, Organic: 956734, Conventional: 434522.
2. Bisphenol A or BPA: The resin that is found in many recycling and food containers is also used as a coating and lining protector in canned foods. When those products are heated the residue penetrates the food establishing toxic imbalances. Estrogen-type synthetic component are common in BPA, so make sure to read labels carefully for a long-term toxic-free lifestyle.
3. Grass-Fed Meat: The label does not guarantee the item is organic; the USDA organic seal is the only guarantee that nothing has been added. The term “grass-fed” only dictates so much; for all we know the animals could have been restricted or locked up.
4. Sugar Ingredients: Label’s content list will alert shoppers about the presence of sugar and its substitutes. Sugar can be disguised as sugar crystals, liquid organic cane juice, organic sugar, and sucrose. Products labeled as sugar-free may be sweetened with sugar alcohols, with names ending in “ol” like Mannitol, Xylitol, and Sorbitol, which can distress the body system.
5. GMO: Genetically engineered or genetically modified foods do not interface with natural cells and create various chronic health issues. Popular GMO crops include corn, soy, and wheat.
If you’re concerned about what you put in and on your body, be mindful when you shop. Reading labels can help you make more informed decisions.
How do you find healthier items at the grocery store? Please comment below.
PainPathways is the first, only and ultimate pain magazine. First published in spring 2008, PainPathways is the culmination of the vision of Richard L. Rauck, MD, to provide a shared resource for people living with and caring for others in pain. This quarterly resource not only provides in-depth information on current treatments, therapies and research studies but also connects people who live with pain, both personally and professionally.
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