What is the danger of food additives with the designation “E”? Healthy eating

We write interestingly about training, proper nutrition and everything related to healthy life and fitness.

Human health directly depends on the lifestyle that he leads, and only 13% depends on the level of health care and 17% on hereditary predisposition. The most important component of a healthy lifestyle is proper nutrition, consisting of products that are beneficial to the body. Meanwhile, almost any product that we buy in the store – whether it is baby food or an ordinary loaf of bread, contains nutritional supplements, which are indicated by the letter “E”.  

The letter “E” began to denote food additives since 1953, before that the names of food additives on the packages were written in full. Given the complexity of the name of many food additives, the European Commission has developed a universal labeling system. For example, sodium dioctisulfosuccinate is now simply denoted by the E480 index, and polyvinylpolypyrrolidone by the E1202 index. In addition, the names of food additives in different languages ​​sound different and a single coding system for the letter “E” of food products significantly reduced confusion among food manufacturers. 

Among the food additives encoded by the letter “E”, there are a lot of those whose harm has not been proven, but their content in the products is recommended to be controlled. Especially carefully study the content of food additives in products imported to us from foreign countries. Many food companies that import food products into Russia produce three types of the same product: the first is for consumption by residents of the producing country, the second is for export to developed countries, and the third is for consumption by low-income people. 

The third type of product is intended for export to countries where the population prefers to save money on food. It would not be sad to talk about this, but 80% of the food products exported to us from foreign countries belong to the third type. Given this circumstance, avoid eating foods that contain dyes labeled E123, E128 and E121, as well as preservatives E217, E240 and E216. These food additives are banned for use in Russia.   

In industrially developed countries , products bearing the E330 index on the packaging are also prohibited for sale, but our consumption, unfortunately, continues. By itself, E330 is an ordinary citric acid, but it can have a harmful effect on the state of the stomach and greatly increases the risk of developing a cancerous tumor.  

Each food additive has its own chemical composition and designation, which is tested for safety. Dyes that are part of the products are indicated by the letter “E” and the numbers next to it from 100 to 182. All artificial dyes can cause allergic reactions in children. Especially toxic in large quantities are E173, E155 and E102, and dyes E128, E123 and E121, as mentioned above, are forbidden to be added to food products. 

If on the product packaging next to the letter “E” there are numbers from 200 to 299, then this indicates that it will not go bad for a long time, since it contains preservatives that extend its shelf life. Many preservatives are carcinogenic and can cause headaches, nausea, allergies, asthma attacks and diarrhea. So with regular use of E250 and E252, kidney failure and anemia can develop, and E214, E219, E200 and E220 can provoke asthma, allergies, migraines and digestive disorders. And the consumption of products containing preservatives E216, E217 and E240 is generally prohibited.  

Antioxidants and acidity regulators, which slow down oxidation processes, have a similar effect to preservatives . They are indicated by numbers from 300 to 399 next to the letter “E”. Of particular danger to the body are E330, E311, E 320 and E 321. Increased doses of them contribute to increased cholesterol in the blood, which can lead to serious diseases of the heart and circulatory system. In addition, many antioxidants are carcinogenic and cause allergic reactions.  

Numbers 400 to 700 next to the letter “E” indicate various food additives – stabilizers, thickeners, emulsifiers, disintegrants, flavor and aroma enhancers . They help to achieve the desired consistency of the product and enhance its taste. The E420 sweetener most known to all of us is widely used in the production of chewing gums, but if you chew gum often, the development of caries, diarrhea and flatulence is guaranteed. And food additives E407, E421, E447, E461-466, E450 can cause diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, kidneys, liver, contribute to the development of caries and osteoporosis.   

The numbers from 700 to 899 next to the letter “E” on the products you will not find, they are kept in stock to denote new varieties of food additives. And the designations from E900 to E1521 indicate that substances that reduce foaming are added to the food product. For example, aspartame, which is designated E951, is added to carbonated drinks. Meanwhile, its use is very harmful to the body as a whole, getting into the stomach it turns into a carcinogenic formaldehyde, which is toxic. And food supplement E952 can cause kidney failure. 

Today there is probably no person who would not doubt buying a jar of yogurt for a child, which includes a food supplement with the letter “E”. Meanwhile, you should not go shopping and check products for the presence of the letter “E”, because many of the food additives labeled “E” are absolutely neutral.  

If we live in the age of high technology, then we will not be able to eat only natural food and live without eating products without the letter “E”. Just learn to distinguish between the beneficial letter “E” and the harmful, because there are many safe and healthy foods among food additives. For example, these are E101 (vitamin B1), E161b (lutein), E406 (agar), E440 (pectin), E916 and E917 – iodine preparations.  

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