How does this stuff get approved?

These are photos of Jodie’s rash, and this is her story:

riborash1266a      riborash1266b

“In 2008, I had the mother of all skin reactions that lasted for several months (chronic hives/uticaria, swollen, droopy eyes, and rashes).  I’d been tested for food ‘allergies’ and experienced increasingly severe rashes.  The doctors simply diagnosed eczema and food intolerances and said there was no cure.  Well, SOMEthing changed to suddenly cause all these reactions ­ I just felt I should be able to ‘change it back’ somehow.

I came across your site trying to understand a reaction to Lay’s Bar-B-Que potato chips. I now know that MSG, yeast extract, and of course the disodium guanylate E627 and disodium inosinate E361 (found in those evil Lay’s potato chips) are absolute triggers for me.  It’s difficult to avoid, but the good thing is I know now and can avoid feeding these excitotoxins to my family. 

I’m outraged at these chemicals being added to our foods.  Excitotoxins, in addition to making foods delicious, frequently cause permanent nerve damage. Is it worth it??  Not for me, but for the companies that make these foods, YES because they taste good so people buy them.” – from story 1266

So how did these chemicals get approved in the first place?

Our network used Freedom of Information (FOI) processes to discover that the MSG boosters called ribonucleotides - including disodium guanylate E627 and disodium inosinate E361 - were approved in the mid 1990s without any discoverable scientific evidence. (“these documents do not exist" and then, later in the FOI documents "currently available toxicological data supports the safe use of …. ribonucleotides"). Read more

Conflicts of interest explained

Professor of Nutrition Marion Nestle from New York University has been described as the "world's second most powerful foodie". She is currently visiting Australia for two months, talking about her new book Soda Politics and researching her next book about conflicts of interest and sponsorship of food and nutrition research.

Asked about the people who approve food additives, she quotes this research:

“An astonishing 100% of the members of 290 expert panels worked directly or indirectly for the companies that manufactured the additive in question.“ (Neltner and others, 2013)

So this is what we are up against.

What does Professor Nestle think we should do about it?

She thinks there should be an agricultural policy that supports public health more than it supports the health of multinational corporations; food labels that make sense, and many more …

But what can YOU do now?

Protect your own family by reading food labels, avoiding nasty additives and buying healthy, minimally processed, real food.  Vote with your dollars and let the food industry see what you want.

More reading

Marion Nestle discusses the goal of large corporate food companies (to make profits: 8 minute video).

Lunch with Marion Nestle: the powerful foodie takes on the soda giants

Neltner JE and others, Conflicts of interest in approvals of additives to food determined to be generally recognized as safe: out of balance. (2013) QUOTE: Between 1997 and 2012, financial conflicts of interest were ubiquitous in determinations that an additive to food was generally regarded as safe … [this] raises concerns about the integrity of the process and whether it ensures the safety of the food supply. 

Marion Nestle's article

By Sue & Howard Dengate

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