Top 5 Thursday: Top 5 Ingredients To Avoid Part 2

Happy Thursday! Who’s recovery from a sugar high this morning? We never have trick or treaters so it’s not an issue for me. Every year I hope for one but each year I am let down 🙁

I used to buy bags of candy “just in case” and then of course I would end up eating it all myself, perhaps out of trick or treater depression?

Now I’ve learned, I just got a mini bag of dark chocolate Hershey bars that only has 5. And since we have 5 left today, they are all in the freezer “chillin” for when I can use them for baking projects. No binge eating candy eaters here!

Talking about junk, remember how last week I started my list of Top 5 Ingredients To Avoid On Labels?

Well today I am finishing it off with the other 5. This is a Top Ten sort of blog, right?

So… let’s get started shall we?

Top Ingredients To Avoid When Looking At Labels

Potassium Bromate

It’s added to some bread, rolls and flours to help give it an extra “oomph” in volume. Potassium bromate is still used in the USA even though it’s proven to cause cancer in animals AND even though it’s banned in the EU, Canada and several other countries.

Are you frustrated? I am!

The FDA has asked bakers to stop using it but it’s still legal so many big brands do including: Sunbeam, Home Pride, and Wonder Bread. You WON’T find it in brands like: Pepperidge Farm, Arnold, Entenmann’s and Orowheat brands.

Check labels for it’s pseudo names: Bromic Acid, Potassium Salt, Bromated Flour and “enriched flour”

Sugar Alcohols

Sugar alcohols are another artificial sweetener. They aren’t sugar, they aren’t alcohol, but they are low calorie sweeteners. You’ll find them in everything from ice cream to protein bars.

If you’ve ever had a protein bar that made you feel bloated, gassy and all around not attractive, then the figure can be pointed to sugar alcohols. Oh yea, and they can have a laxitive affect. Fun times.

Here are some sugar alcohols to be on the lookout for:

  • Erythritol
  • Glycerol (also known as glycerin or glycerine)
  • hydrogenated starch hydrolysates
  • isomalt
  • lactitol
  • maltitol
  • mannitol
  • sorbitol
  • xylitol

As for if it’s good for you, the jury is still out. I take that as a tip to stay away from it.

Brominated Vegetable Oil

This is also known as BVO and is a chemical to boost flavor in many citric based fruit and soft drinks. This stuff is BAD… studies have linked it to increased amounts of triglycerides and cholesterol. It can also damage the livers, testicles, thyroid, heart and kidneys. Sounds great right?  Just think about that the next time you or someone around you opens up a Mountain Dew.

I don’t think I really need to say anything else about BVO, it’s not going to be your BFF that’s for sure.

hydrogenated oils

Hydrogentated and Partially Hydrogenated Oils

We all know trans-fats are bad, but did you know that trans fat is just another word for hydrogenated fats? Hydrogenated simply means adding hydrogen to a normal fat to make it a different consistency. But that one little change has a huge impact on your health.

Hydrogenated fats/oils are found in over 40,000 foods in the US! Crazy. Why, you ask? Because they are cheap to make and when it comes down to it, the cheaper items wins out in big business. Sounds like HFCS a bit, right?

Trans fats are shown to raise bad cholesterol (LDL), lower the good cholesterol (HDL) and put you at risk for heart disease. With it being in over 40,000 foods, no wonder why heart disease is the leading case of death for men and women!

(Other names: Palm, Soybean Oils)



I have seen this on a lot of “healthy” foods but to be honest wasn’t sure about it, until now. It’s an indigestible fat substitute used in fried and baked prepackaged foods. Remember the old diet drug that came out about 10 years ago? It was made of this stuff, and had a similar name.

Here’s the problem because it isn’s ingestible it also blocks other nutrients and minerals from being ingested and absorbed.

It’s linked to gastrointestinal disease, diarrhea, gas, cramps, bleeding and incontinence. Yes, please sign me up for foods with this in it!

And that brings a conclusion to our Top 10 Foods To Avoid! If you didn’t get a chance to see the first 5, see them here.

I am off to check through my pantry and make sure I am not housing any of these crazy awful foods! Let the A-type personality go all out today!

  • What food(s) do you try to avoid the most? 


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