Death By Food

We need it. It is necessary for survival. We require it to work, to play, and to continue loving on those that matter. Some are compelled to eat more than necessary, but each of us partakes in yummy delicious food. What then when the thing we have want of for life giving sustenance causes death?

Anyone with gut instinct knows McDonald’s food is subpar. The nourishment, and I use the word loosely, we shove in our faces, or throw to the kids in the backseat as we zoom off to after school practice is more reprehensible than we imagined. We acknowledge that the chicken nuggets aren’t real chicken pieces, rather processed chicken parts, but did you know that chicken causes cancer? In this case what you don’t know can kill you.  

Snopes is fairly quick at debunking a “myth,”  but a check on McDonald’s causes cancer reveals the matter as undetermined. Gulp! So what is acrylamide and why is it in our food? Acrylamide is used in paper production, food dyes, plastics, caulking, food packages, and adhesives. Whoa, that’s enough for me.  Okay, that’s easy, just don’t order the chicken; right? If there is comfort, it may be in this… acrylamide is not present in these foods, but only when foods are bmcwarningrowned. Eeek! The warning label doesn’t stop there, it goes on to list potatoes, french fries, hashbrowns, and to a lesser degree, hamburger buns, biscuits, coffee, and soda as culprits.  I can’t remember the last value meal that didn’t contain french fries, but there is no value in a premature, unnecessary death.  I may never eat at McDonald’s again.

“Onward Christian Soldiers,” keep marching right past Chick Fil-A because it isn’t much better.  One can find plenty of dimethylpolysiloxane in chicken at Fil-A. Fil-A?  Nope, Fil-F is the mark in my gradebook. No thanks to the antifoaming chemical found in chicken sandwiches. The stuff dreams are made of doesn’t include brain damaging effects, caulks, sealants, breast implants, silly putty, or the treatment of head lice.  Ever have a kid that needed treated for lice, and see the damaging effects that cure has on hair? Not a chance I am knowingly putting that in my body. Snopes can’t completely unmask this “myth” either.  It finds dimethylpolysiloxane is not silly putty, but is an antifoaming agent present in food. Ewwwww!

McDonald’s is catching on that people don’t want preservatives in their food. It is even making menu changes for customers that enjoy natural food by eliminating preservatives from it’s most popular menu item-chicken nuggets. The fast food chain is also considering removing preservatives other menu items too, in an effort to make food more “tastable”. McGriddles and other items are up for an overhaul, but hold on to your seat because the buns are next. Perhaps the fast food giant wants to improve sales by meeting customer’s desires of real food. If you are nostalgic for natural food it may be coming to a McDonald’s near you soon, but there are no plans to improve the chemicals, dyes, additives, and preservatives in the sauces, at least not yet.

Let’s get nostalgic about the good ‘ole days when we didn’t know what was in our food, or didn’t care. Remember those college days when life was simple, and you ran over to the food court for that savory nutritious meal? Maybe you were too busy cramming for finals or studying to make Dean’s List and opted to boil Ramen noodles in your room.  Recent claims suggest the wax lining leads to death.  Snopes to the rescue here, friends, your budget friendly right of passage meal is still relatively safe.  The wax that can cause cancer is edible and passes from the body within a few days. Keep on walking–to class and enjoy that cup of noodles, just use that noodle in your head and remove the plastic wrap first.

I walk pretty well most of the time, but once in awhile walking and chewing pose a small problem.  Sometimes I can’t walk and chew at the same time. Have you thought about the chemicals in your chewing gum?  Perhaps this goes under radar, since gum isn’t actually swallowed.  Gum contains aspartame, if it is sugar free, but what else? The gum filler holds resins, plasticizers and fillers, and manufacturers decline to get too serious about what else is lurking inside.  If you take comfort in not brushing after a meal and pop a stick of gum instead, you are ingesting the above, and possibly carcinogens too, the Snopes jury has not reached a definitive conclusion. Like, I know; right? Consider keeping a toothbrush and toothpaste in your desk, at least those items won’t kill you.

I am passionate about what I put into my body.  If I can’t pronounce it, I avoid it.  Junk in, junk out. I haven’t touched on organic versus genetically modified, grass fed, or the glue that holds our meat together, but I promise to be back soon with more about life versus death by food.

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About the Author

Nicole Akers believes in this Marc Anthony quote, "If you do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life." She is a life-long writer. She is schooled in Creative Writing, Literature, British Literature, and Poetics. As an English major she honed her skills in Creative Writing, Journalism, Copy Writing, and even self published a book of poems. Today she is a Writer, Content Writer, and Blogger.