Additives are unnatural substances that are added to the food to aid in manufacturing and to improve or alter it. Additives provide a longer shelf life, better taste, added minerals, and improved appearance for marketing. Recent studies have found, however, that many of the additives used in our food can be harmful to our bodies; even when they are on the list of additives that are permitted. The problem is that some of the chemicals approved still have harmful effects, including cancer. The chemicals in our food are important to the companies making the food and banning these chemicals would cause many of the products currently on the market to be removed from production. One of these products is the non-fat sugar substitute known as aspartame or NutraSweet. This chemical was praised by dieters because it doesn't leave an aftertaste like many of the other sugar substitutes, but recent studies show that this chemical can affect the brain and alter behavior. It's suggested that you not consume large amounts of it and avoid giving it to infants. If the baby's metabolism cannot break down its amino acids, excessive amounts of amino acids remain in the blood making it toxic and this can cause mental retardation. Many of these chemicals can cause changes in brain functions, heart problems, ulcers, birth defects, and cancer. We're not saying that you should stop consuming the foods that taste good, but you should know what is in the food you eat and limit the amounts of potentially harmful food.
Preservatives are a type of additive that primarily focuses on the preservation of the food we eat. Out of all of the different types of additives, preservatives are one of the most important. Without it, food would spoil much faster and we wouldn't be able to store foods such as fruits and other delicacies. Fortunately, many of the chemicals used are harmless, or not enough studies have been performed to verify any harmful effects. Unfortunately, some of these preservatives do have harmful effects. Sodium nitrate, commonly known as one of the salts (not table salt), has been used for preservation and flavoring for generations and it is harmless unless you consume large amounts of it; then it becomes unhealthy. In fact, anything consumed in large amounts can be unhealthy.
The discovery of hormones in our food is most disconcerting. Hormones are chemicals released by the body to maintain its growth. They tell it when to initiate certain stages, like puberty, and when to stop growing. Hormones are the backbone of all our bodily functions. Instability in this system can cause disruptions like a full grown male growing breasts. It is extremely important not to disturb this delicate system. Hormones in our food are harmful because they disrupt normal functions. Have you noticed the rate at which some girls' bodies are now maturing? This rapid growth could be caused by the hormones in our food. Calves are injected with hormones and steroids to increase their growth. If these hormones are in our meat, they have the potential to affect our own growth rate.