To date, the FDA has approved only one Cannabis-derived drug product which is only available with a prescription from a licensed healthcare provider.
They are making researches but who knows how long it will take before they actually make an informed decision concerning the Cannabis plants and all of its derivatives.
Cannabis has been used for millions of years; we have proof of it being used way back in ancient China as medicine among other things.
On the other hand, the FDA has approved many very dangerous substances in the past.
Consumers have put their trust in the Federal Food and Drug Administration and now rely on it to make a decision concerning Cannabis before feeling safe using any derivative of the plant.
Here are FDA approved substances that are putting anyone ingesting them in danger.
But hey, they are FDA approved there is no reason to be worried.
#1- Food additives
Food additives are added to food to preserve flavor and intensify its taste, or its texture or its appearance.
Some additives like salt have been largely used for centuries. Any process that involves pickling (with vinegar), salting dry meet. Sulfur dioxide was used by the Romans to prevent wines from turning into vinegar.
It is only in the past century that food additives became more of a concern. With the arrival of processed food. During that period more additives have entered the "market" some of natural sources and some of artificial origin.
For years we used them without thinking of the repercussions. Nowadays some people eat only processed food and that when it gets very dangerous.
Today Food additives are listed as safe by the FDA, but more researches are made about the safety of
these additives when consumed in large quantities, and it is not looking good.
That is why you can easily find in these ingredients in food on your grocery store shelves :
-Sodium nitrate which is linked to cancer, in your processed meats to stop
-Azodicarbonamide in bagels and buns even if it can cause asthma.
-Sulfites in prepared food to keep it "fresh". This one can cause breathing difficulties.
-BHA/BHT linked to cancerous tumor growth is a fat preservative used to extend the shelf life of food.
And that's is only to name a few for more please consult this list of 50 toxics food approved by the FDA.
#2- Artificial Flavoring
Artificial Flavoring is approved by the FDA, this category includes 700 different synthetics chemicals.
Artificial flavors are used in the process of Flavoring. They are used to enhance the taste and aroma of food. Synthetic Flavor is made of chemicals and alcohol, glycerol, or propylene glycol as solvents.
Usually, these artificial substances are inspired by a real natural flavor, almost all-natural flavors found in nature have been synthesized today.
A good thing to know is that manufacturers are not even obligated to list the ingredient of the artificial flavors on their packaging.
To obtain the synthesized flavor of strawberry for example we need 10-12 different ingredients. These ingredients won't be listed on the packaging of your product.
Artificial flavors seem to be quite stables and don't have any bad side effects on the human body so far. Although they are mainly found in highly processed food that's is why it is better to stay away.
#3- Artificial Coloring
Like Artificial flavors, Artificial colors a synthesized in laboratories and do not require the manufacturers to lists its ingredients on the packaging.
Food dyes have been used for longer then you may think. The first time it was recorded was in 1856. Coal tar was the first "ingredient" used to alter the color of food. It is still used today but not as much we prefer using petroleum.
An increase of 500% has been observed in artificial food dye consumption in the last 50 years.
The biggest consumers being kids. Some researches observed a correlation between the amount of food coloring ingested and the number of children having to deal with hyperactivity, allergies or even cancer.
Not all artificial coloring a considered dangerous and from one country to another the banned colors will differ.
Here are some colors to stay away from.
-Red # 40: This color is found in many foods and all modern dyes are derived from it. It has been linked to cancer and can also cause hyperactivity.
-Blue # 1: Mainly used in bakery, candies and soft drink it can damage chromosomes and leas to cancer as well.
-Blue # 2: Can cause brain tumors and is usually found in candy and pet food beverages.
-Citrus red # 1: This is often sprayed on oranges to make them look nicer, it can damage chromosome and lead to cancer too.
For a more complete list please refer to this list of 50 toxics food approved by the FDA
#4- Artificial sweeteners
This category is probably the saddest.
Most people eating products with artificial sweeteners are usually trying to be healthier. Unfortunately, it is probably the worst thing for their health.
Diet sodas filled with aspartame have been highly linked with cancer…
Aspartame has also been linked to some other unwanted side effects like seizures, headaches, mood disturbances, and reduced mental performance.
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that the ingestion of diet soft drinks actually increased the risks of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.
High fructose corn syrup also fits in this category.
This type of syrup is made from cornstarch. Regrettably, the corn used to make the syrup is grown with an extensive amount of pesticides that end up in the syrup as well.
When absorbed by our bodies this sugary substance works completely against us by generating insulin resistance.
In simpler words, it can trigger the development of illnesses associated with obesity and metabolic syndromes like diabetes and cardiovascular disease, abnormal increases in body fat, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
Sugar abuse is now slowly building itself a reputation of cognitive decline and potential cancerogenic.
Here are some other Artificial sweeteners to avoid:
-Saccharin: Linked do bladder cancer in rats.
-Sucralose: In other words, Splenda, causes swelling of liver and kidneys plus the shrinkage of the thymus gland.
-Bleached starch: Used in many dairy products it is thought to be related to asthma and skin irritations.
If you are interested in knowing more of these dangerous ingredients you can look at this list of 50 toxics food approved by the FDA.
#5-Partially Hydrogenated oils
Partially hydrogenated oils started to be added to food in the 1950s. It is used to lengthen the shelf life and stabilized the flavor of the food.
These types of oil are usually found in bakeries and fried foods in restaurants. Partially hydrogenated oils are the precursor of artificial trans fat.
Artificial trans fat increases the risks of heart conditions. They promote the "bad" cholesterol and diminish the "good" cholesterol.
This particular type of fat could be considered as the most dangerous fat found in our food and can be linked to up to 7 000 deaths and 20 000 heart attacks per year.
The FDA took it off the Generally Recognise As Safe (GRAS) list in 2015.
Although manufacturers are still allowed to put up to 0.5 grams of artificial trans fat per serving.
Therefore, it is crucial to look at the list of ingredients, making sure there is no partially hydrogenated oils/ artificial trans fat.
#6-Antibiotics in animal feed
Antibiotics have been used for years in the farming industry although it is getting a little bit out of hands.
It isn't only used for sick animals anymore. The conditions the animals are in are so poor that they develop more and more diseases making it substantial to give them antibiotics almost all of their life.
Animals are now "consuming" 80% of our production in antibiotics…
Continuous Antibiotics also permit industrial farms to produces bigger animals that grow faster with a smaller amount of food.
These antibiotics end up in the meat we ingest and generate antibiotics resistance.
Antibiotics resistance is a phenomenon observed when someone gets overexposed to antibiotics and develop the "ability" to resist the effects of antibiotics.
Meaning that regular antibiotics treatment is no longer effective and let infections persist and maximize the risk of severe consequences to the patients.
This issue is causing 700, 000 deaths annually worldwide.
This overuse of antibiotics in the farm industry has been linked to Salmonella.
In 2016, the FDA issued a guide for the industries in which it is recommended the reduce or even stop the use of antibiotics.
Unfortunately, these "regulations" are voluntary base and cannot be enforced legally…
The best way to stay away from these "contaminated" meats remains to reduce our consumption of meat and to shop locally as much as we can.
The list goes on. There are so many other FDA approved substances you wouldn't even believe are judged "safe".
Today it is imperative to be cautious and inform when shopping for anything. We can't rely on organizations like the FDA to protect us anymore.
Remember what you put in your body will always have an impact on your health.
Take care, everyone.