Choice research tells us there are over 300 approved food additives in Australia. The food industry says they are necessary to prevent food poisoning and to extend shelf life etc while consumer advocacy groups say are unsafe.
The Choice website gives detailed info and an opinion on food additives we should avoid.
Colours, hyperactivity and other health concerns
Artificial sweeteners and cancer
Unlabelled additives often labelled ‘flavouring’
On food labels under ‘ingredients’ there are code numbers which we can be used as a warning/indicator:
Additives and processed food go together — you rarely get one without the other. The more highly processed foods we eat, the more additives we eat too. So the easiest way to avoid them is to eat mainly fresh and only lightly processed foods such as canned tomatoes and frozen vegetables.
“Broadly speaking, nanotechnology involves manipulating matter at the tiny, nanoscale to create new materials, structures and devices..
At this tiny scale, materials can have different properties from their bulk form because of the larger relative surface area (making them potentially more reactive) and new quantum effects that can take over from the usual laws of physics.
Consumer products range from invisible sunscreens (with nanoscale titanium dioxide and zinc oxide) to shirts that don’t stain. In medicine, progress is being made in areas such as disease diagnosis and drug delivery targeted at specific sites in the body (making cancer treatment, for example, potentially more effective), and in other non-domestic situations, nanotechnology is being applied in the fields of environmental protection for water and air purification, pollution detection and harnessing solar energy.
WHAT’S THE FOOD INDUSTRY DOING?
”Nanofoods” refers to all foods to which manufactured nanoscale food components have been added and/or packaged in materials to which manufactured nanoparticles have been added. Nanotechnology certainly offers exciting possibilities for the future, such as safer food that can be conveniently stored for longer periods without deterioration. Other possibilities include foods fortified with healthy ingredients such as vitamins, antioxidants or omega-3 fats, encapsulated so that they are delivered exactly where they are needed in your body.
Some of the food giants, including Kraft, Nestlé and Unilever, are exploring the use of nanotechnology, but so far keeping very quiet. There are, however, plenty of potential food applications of nanotechnology being openly canvassed.”