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Top 10 Food Additives You Should Avoid

This article is a transcribed edited summary of a video Bob and Brad recorded in September of 2021. For the original video go to

Bob: Today I am joined by Jordan, whose title is…

Jordan: Nutritional health coach.

Bob: And glad that we have her here today because today we’re talking about the top 10 foods and food additives you should avoid. I am looking forward to this. I need to follow some guidance here.

Jordan: We all need reminders.

Bob: Alright, let’s start right off with the number one thing. I see you have listed vegetable oils.

Jordan: Yes, and before we jump into this, I should mention these aren’t in any order. I didn’t rank them. They’re all just bad. Just stay away, but anyways, going on.

Bob: That’s perfect.

Jordan: So, vegetable oils is a big category of oils. So, any of our highly processed oils, canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil, safflower oil, there’s others that fall into this category. Those are kind of the mainstays. Vegetable oil in general. Some are just labeled vegetable oil.

Bob: So, these could be a separate as an oil and in a product.

Jordan: Correct. So, this would be like what we cook our food with, but also like when we’re shopping, you got to look for these on labels. They’re very common.

Bob: You must be like a detective because it’s in a lot of stuff.

Jordan: You do.

Bob: So why are these oils so bad?

Jordan: So honestly, main reason is that these are mostly polyunsaturated fats. I'll try not to get scientific and bore people but you kind of need a little bit of background knowledge. But, they’re super sensitive to heat, to light, and to air exposure. So, what food manufacturers do is they chemically modify them to make them resistant to these things. They’re highly processed and changed from their original form to make them so that we can deep fry in that.

Bob: So, they won’t spoil, is that why?

Jordan: Yes, so they won’t spoil. Restaurants use them so that they can deep fry. Well, you can’t do that unless they’re modified to resist heat.

Bob: Gotcha.

Jordan: Another reason why they are bad are that they are high in Omega-6, which is pro-inflammatory in our body, and you know about inflammation and how bad that is.

Bob: Right. It’s kind of one of the key words right now. In the literature and Omega-3s are good, right?

Jordan: Yes.

Bob: Yeah, that’s salmon and stuff like that, right?

Jordan: Yeah, fish oils, salmon.

Bob: So, do you want to talk about alternatives to these?

Jordan: Yeah, I guess we could touch on it. First, look at your food ingredients. If you eat whole foods, there’s nothing to read, but you know, the fact of the matter is we don’t always. I always teach people to read the ingredients rather than the nutrition facts. You’re going find way more information there. So, watching for these processed oils, and instead replacing them with three main oils. I always talk about our avocado oil, olive oil, and coconut oil.

Bob: We went to avocado oil, because didn’t you say the other two are sensitive to heat or not?

Jordan: Avocado oil can withstand heat. Coconut oil can withstand heat. Olive oil, not so much.

Bob: Olive oil, right. We were doing olive oil and you had said that doesn’t really work. So, I make my popcorn in avocado oil.

Jordan: Yeah, and it’s good right? No different change in flavor.

Bob: Yeah, it’s very good. I spray it on stuff. I spray it on my popcorn too. That’s great. It changed our life. Why don’t we skip to number two here now?

Jordan: Yeah, let’s do it.

Bob: We’re going to talk about flour and we’re talking about both white and wheat flour.

Jordan: Yeah, so flour. Go through your pantry and try to find something without flour. Unless of course you’re already following your whole foods-based diet but most of our packaged foods that we have, even our “healthy foods” that we think are healthy in our pantry, if you go and flip it over, they have some kind of flour in them. Our cereal, crackers, obviously bread. That’s an obvious one. Pastas, what am I missing here? The thing that most people don’t understand, I think a lot of people now have knowledge or that they think they have knowledge on is wheat is better than white. The problem with this, and we could probably do a podcast on this in and of itself if we wanted to, but wheat today, is not what wheat was 50 years ago.

Bob: Yeah, they took out the currant, right?

Jordan: Yeah.

Bob: They took out the nutrition and left all the crappy stuff.

Jordan: Yeah. You’ll see wheat products that have vitamins and minerals, but that’s fortified. That’s fortified in their cereals, bread. It’s not naturally coming from the wheat. Wheat in and of itself, in my nutritional opinion, has no nutritional value in our diets.

Bob: Probably negative, right?

Jordan: Yeah. I mean, we could get heavy but that’s a whole topic.

Bob: You mention earlier to read the ingredients versus the nutrition label. It seems like the packaging, they come up with terms that make it sound like its healthy, but it’s not at all. It’s the exact opposite of health.

Jordan: Oh yeah. They can put all sort of things that attract us now to make it look healthy.

Bob: They know legally what they can say, and they totally lie, believe me.

Jordan: Oh yeah.

Bob: I’ve looked at things. I remember I was looking at two types of ketchup and they both had the same ingredients and they both sounded like two totally different ketchups.

Jordan: Oh yeah. They’re very smart, food manufacturers, to get you to buy their stuff. So, when you go to buy a product that’s coming off the shelves that has ingredients in it, just skip over the nutrition label. You’re going to get everything you need to know on that ingredient list.

Bob: Sure. All right, let’s go to number three. Low-fat or fat-free products. This is a good one.

Jordan: Yeah, this is one of my favorites to teach people on, this and another one we’re going to cover later.

Bob: What are some examples?

Jordan: Examples of this would be milk, yogurt, a lot of dairy products, sour cream, mayonnaise, peanut butter, salad dressings. There’s more, those are just some things to throw out there.

Bob: What makes the low-fat version or fat-free so bad in these products?

Jordan: Well, so the problem is a lot of these products, in their pure form, they have fat in them, right? So, in nature, how they’re found, they have fats, a food manufacturer must physically go out and remove the fat to make them fat-free or low-fat. That’s not naturally occurring. So, when we do that, we’re altering them from their whole pure form. In addition to that, you take that out, and you put nothing else in as a replacement, it tastes like crap. Nobody would eat it. Nobody would drink it, so they must put something else back in. Sugar, food additives to make it more palatable. They’re smart. Food manufacturers are so smart at making things.

Bob: So, again. When you say low-fat, fat-free to me, that’s going to sound like low calorie and it’s not because it might have sugar in it.

Jordan: Right. A lot of time, some of these things, they’re taking the fat out of as it existed in nature and its whole form like fat is good, you know, to an extent and when we alter all these things and take it all out, I think it’s causing more damage to our health than just leaving it alone.

Bob: This is the reason why the last generation is obese. Obesity is on the rise, like a pandemic.

Jordan: Yep, diabetes along with it.

Bob: Right. Because they push the fat-free and low-fat.

Jordan: Right, a hundred percent.

Bob: All right. Do you want to say anything more about that, or should we go to number four?

Jordan: Let’s go on. I think that covers it, just don’t buy anything that says low-fat or fat-free. Period, end of story.

Bob: There you go. GMO, corn, and soy is number four.

Jordan: Yeah, this is kind of another heavy topic. Like the whole wheat.

Bob: A lot of farmers aren’t going to be happy with you.

Jordan: I know, I ruffled the feathers. I try to be careful who I have conversations with this about. I’ll put it out there. I’m an organic promoter. I buy it, I believe in it, to what extent we can always believe everything in the food industry can be a little bit sketchy, but let’s back up. I wonder if people even know what GMO means.

Bob: Right, let’s talk about it.

Jordan: Okay. So, I can define that in simple terms, GMO stands for genetically modified organism. So, something that was changed and altered from its natural form. A lot of our crops are genetically modified to make them more resistant to pests and things like that. I mean, they’re genetically modified for all sorts of reasons. So, things can last longer.

Bob: Isn’t that true about every product created now, as far as, I mean like apples, aren’t they genetically modified or am I wrong?

Jordan: Yeah, you’re hard pressed to find a produce item that isn't. There are some but yeah, most are modified in some way, shape, or another.

Bob: So, what I understand about our gut flora, this has been developed over thousands of years, correct?

Jordan: Our gut flora? Yes.

Bob: And so, we’re making changes to that in just a span of a few years, our gut flora doesn’t have a chance to adapt to it.

Jordan: Correct. That’s a good way to put it. We’ve seen more changes in our food supply in the last 50 years, than we have combined in hundreds upon hundreds of years. I don’t even think we understand the consequences it’s going to have quite yet.

Bob: No, we don’t. The science hasn’t caught up yet.

Jordan: No, no. So, in my opinion, when you can avoid those things like that, that we just don’t know enough about, I think that’s a good idea.

Bob: Right.

Jordan: How you avoid it. If it’s from a non-GMO crop, it will say on the label, GMO-free like companies do label that. You can find it, you can spot it out, but you must look for it.

Bob: Number five is probably the most obvious one on the list.

Jordan: Yeah, must include it though.

Bob: Sugar. It’s a beast.

Jordan: Yeah, whenever I do like any sort of nutrition talk or presentation or coaching with people, whatever it might be, this is one where I don’t get a lot of question on. People know they understand sugar is bad. Some of the other ones I get questions. But sugar, we can all agree, it’s not good. That doesn’t mean we avoid it. But I kind of wanted to focus today’s conversation though. We know sugar is bad, but I want to really talk about sugar in drinks, and just how detrimental that really is. I mean sugar is in everything. We should do our best to avoid it.

Bob: What’s shocking to me is, I can understand the sugar that you see in a can of soda but there is a lot of sugar in a lot of the sports drinks.

Jordan: Oh my gosh, yes.

Bob: We found out; I think some of them were worse than the regular drinks. It’s supposed to be a sports drink. You’re downing sugar.

Jordan: Energy drinks too. I don’t drink those, I think they’re disgusting, but I know a lot of people rely on those. Juice is another one people think is healthy. You know the problem is just with, sugar in drinks it’s just way too easy to just do too much of it.

Bob: Like it’s fine for you to eat an orange or two, but an orange drink, you’re really concentrating the sugar.

Jordan: Like there’s no way we could sit here and peel 10 oranges and sit and down those in this time we’re doing this podcast, but could we juice 10 oranges and drink it? 100%. So, it is just way too easy to overdo it. I know so many people that every single day they’re going through Starbucks or whatever drive through to get their latte and not understanding.

Bob: A sneaky way of getting sugar.

Jordan: Yeah. It’s amazing to me how people are living on these things, starting their day with them.

Bob: I was coaching basketball, sixth grade and we had these kids they’d come in and they take these sports drinks before the game. They would just crash like by game two.

Jordan: Yes!

Bob: I could see it in their eyes.

Jordan: We don’t put two and two together.

Bob: I did, I stopped drinking those sports drinks. That’s for sure.

Jordan: I’ll take a slight side tangent on this one. Personal story testimonial that happened to me yesterday if I can. So, I don’t drink sugary drinks because I know they’re bad for me. I don’t care for the taste. I’m good with water and some black coffee and tea, but anyways, I’m pregnant right now. I had to do a glucose tolerance test. So, they made me sit in the doctor’s office and drink 50 grams of concentrated sucrose or whatever form it was.

Bob: Really?

Jordan: Yeah. Then an hour later they test to make sure your insulin is working. That’s a standard test.

Bob: Would that work for you? For somebody who never drinks it.

Jordan: Well, that’s what my hesitation was with it, I had a lot of questions. Well, I mean I did pass it. But my story with this that I will share with people, I don’t understand how people can drink that and function in life. About 45 minutes when I was done, I started feeling dizzy. I was yawning. I was tired. I was vibrant, full of energy before that. Then, I got to work about two hours later and I was starving, so hungry, and I just crashed.

Bob: And then you crave sugar.

Jordan: Oh yeah! So that’s my personal testimonial.

Bob: It’s a terrible cycle to get into.

Jordan: It is, and I know your body gets used to it, but I don’t understand how people are walking around and drink after drink.

Bob: Well now, number six. Artificial sweetener. If you don’t take sugar, can’t you take a false sugar?

Jordan: We would think, well, we’re taking the Coca-Cola out, so we’ll just make it Diet Coke now, right?

Bob: Right.

Jordan: Unfortunately, I thought this was common knowledge for people that artificial sweeteners aren’t good, but there’s too many people now that are seeing sugar-free and they’re grabbing it.

Bob: Right, exactly.

Jordan: Yeah, so artificial sweeteners. There’s a lot of names, there’s a big list, I’ll just touch the two main ones. Aspartame and sucralose. Splenda is the brand name for sucralose.

Bob: What is one that’s a little bit better for you?

Jordan: Stevia. Still, to our knowledge in nutrition, in small amounts, because stevia is a plant, like it’s okay.

Bob: Small amounts. So, if you’re going to do one, that’s probably the one.

Jordan: Yes. So, just staying away from things labeled sugar-free. So no, your sugar-free latte at Starbucks is no better than your regular vanilla latte in my opinion.

Bob: Am I right saying, isn’t it like your body will react to it like its sugar sometimes? Your insulin levels may shoot up.

Jordan: Correct.

Bob: It fools your body apparently too, sometimes.

Jordan: It does. We’ll touch on that with the next one we talk about too, fooling your body. But in addition to that, we still just don’t know enough about them, but we do know that when they do digest and break down into our body, their byproducts in the whole digestion process are some compounds that we don’t want released in our body.

Bob: All right. Next one is MSG. I remember one, we’d all go get Chinese and he’d say no MSG. I think he would laugh and leave it in there anyway.

Jordan: Yeah, probably. So, you knew about this one before?

Bob: Well, I didn’t know what it was. I just remember everybody told you, don’t order the MSG.

Jordan: And you don’t know what it is. In fancy terms, it stands for monosodium glutamate.

Bob: Gotcha.

Jordan: It’s a food additive. It’s a flavor enhancer. It makes things taste good. It’s really that food additive that makes you want more. So, there’s a reason why, when you go open a bag of Doritos, that you don’t eat two Doritos, you eat the whole bag. It’s literally what food manufacturers do. It tricks your taste buds into wanting more, it’s addictive.

Bob: It is addictive! I was hearing this doctor talk on the radio on time and he and his wife were in the car, and they literally had to stop the car, put it in trunk. And even then, they stopped later, and opened the trunk. It’s amazing.

Jordan: I’ve heard stories that people throwing away in their garbage outside going and digging it out of their garbage. It’s addictive. Food manufacturers are smart. The more you eat, the more you buy. Right? But you’re going to find it in a lot of processed foods. Go to any chip, not like a plain salted potato chip, that won’t have it, but like a barbecue or sour cream and onion, Doritos, Cheetos, all those flavored, that’s going to have MSG.

Bob: What’s bad about it, I mean in general?

Jordan: First, you’re going to overeat those foods. They’re addictive. Then we’ve got all sorts of other things in it. As far as what else is specifically bad about the compound MSG, I would have to do some more specific research, but again, it’s an artificial food additive. Anything manufactured and made by food manufacturers, I’m not going to trust it.

Bob: Right, exactly. All right, next one. Deli meat or processed meats. I used to eat a lot of these I’m afraid to say, but I stopped about 20 years ago.

Jordan: Yeah. So, this is what I want to say too. They’re not all bad. There are some out on the market that you can find at your grocery store that are better. So, I don’t want to lump it and say that you can’t find a good one out there.

Bob: You have to be particular.

Jordan: We just want to kind of educate you on what to look at in a label, we could include hotdogs in this category too or sausage, things or that nature. A lot of what they have in them is a preservative. It’s a food additive to make the food last longer called nitrates, nitrites, if you’ve heard of those. That’s the big issue with it, linked to a whole host of health issues that I didn’t even begin to list on here.

Bob: So, you’re looking for nitrate-free, basically.

Jordan: Correct. Nitrate-free. If you are going to include these as a part of your diet and what you’ll see when you go and buy a package of turkey and they’re nitrate-free, what they’re putting in it instead, is an herb like rosemary. Because it can preserve a food in the same way, it’s beyond me.

Bob: Just as long?

Jordan: Yeah. Celery powder or celery seed is another one.

Bob: It’s probably more expensive

Jordan: Exactly. I think that’s the main reason why those things aren’t being used, but there are alternatives, but we need to be aware of what we need to look for.

Bob: So, you’re looking for nitrate-free, but you’re also looking for quality raised meats, without hormones or antibiotics. So, what if you find a meat that says it does not have antibiotics in it, but you don’t know about hormones.

Jordan: Well, that’s a gray area. You must have both on the label.

Bob: That’s what I wanted to know exactly. I just saw this.

Jordan: I think it’s chicken. I always get this confused. One of them is banned in all. Like you’re not even going to find it in the lowest quality chicken, yet they’ll still advertise it to you. It still has the other one, does that make sense?

Bob: Yeah, that’s probably what I found, and I can’t remember which one it was either. All right. Second to last one, Margarine. I used to think that was the healthy one. Butter was so bad for you, so I ate margarine for years.

Jordan: I think I grew up on margarine in the refrigerator. Not in my adult years, but margarine is a manmade food. It doesn’t exist in nature. I don’t know if you know anything about how it’s made at all.

Bob: I don’t.

Jordan: Remember the vegetable oils we talked about earlier. So, it started with one of those, a vegetable oil.

Bob: So, a bad start.

Jordan: Yeah. To me, margarine is worse than vegetable oils. So they start with that, but then what they do is they modify it, change it, to make it solid or partially solid. It’s nice and spreadable. They modify it to be a partially saturated fat in a sense. That’s trans-fat by nature. I think we have enough knowledge now in human nutrition that trans-fats are arguably one of the worst things that we can put into our body. So, there’s absolutely nothing natural about it. Completely synthetic, manmade altered to create this.

Bob: Is there any of them that are good? Like, isn’t there vegan butters or something like that?

Jordan: Yeah, there are. There’s maybe some that are a lesser evil or starting with a better oil.

Bob: Do you just use butter

Jordan: I just use butter.

Bob: Gotcha. I mean, it tastes better.

Jordan: I just use regular ole butter. I mean grass-fed butter. That’s what I use. It does taste better. So, if you have margarine in your house, if you’re going to do nothing else from this conversation, that that in the garbage because you’re really taking another from this list and making it even worse.

Bob: Boy, that’s good advice. Number ten.

Jordan: Number ten, I put in a food category, and I’ll tell you why, but donuts and cake and baked goods. Bakery items. Now, the reason I put this in here we can expand upon it, but now we’re taking and we’re combining a product that has sugar, the oils, probably GMO. It’s got flour we talked about. If you have frosting on your cake, you’re going to have margarine probably or vegetable shortening to make that, maybe some are using butter. My point is now we’re taking a bunch of these things that we talked about and putting it together.

Bob: Here you go! Have it!

Jordan: I don’t even know what that’s doing in our body, to be honest with you. I don’t even think we understand the compound effect when we put all these things that we already know are bad by themselves, but then we put them together.

Bob: You know, I’m doing more and more reading on this and basically food is medicine. On the other end, I think the other types of food can be almost like a poison to you. They were giving an example of how food can affect Alzheimer’s and have a large effect. They were talking about the things that people eat. It’s like the exact wrong things to eat for developing Alzheimer’s. People eat like this daily.

Jordan: We’re not talking about the occasional twice a year piece of birthday cake that you eat. We’re talking about the daily exposure having that compounding effect. If you’re eating a good, healthy whole foods diet, you can probably handle a piece of birthday cake but it’s when you compound it on top of all these other things it’s just toxic overload for your body. It’s no wonder we’re seeing the health crisis and people that we’re seeing today.

Bob: This was a wonderful topic, Jordan. I said we’ll have to expand on some of these. Thanks to everybody for joining!

Jordan: Yeah, thank you guys!

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