This week, Subway found out customers don’t like eating a chemical found in yoga mats, shoe rubber and synthetic leather. After one blogger’s petition against azodicarbonamide generated widespread uproar, (see below) Subway Corporate announced plans to remove the ingredient from its bread but did not say when. Currently, its 9-grain wheat, Italian white and sourdough breads contain Azodicarbonamide and so does many more foods.
To left is the petition that the “Food Babe Blog” initiated which created all the news. Bravo to the Food Babe, http://www.foodbabe.com. The media blitz has uncovered serious questions about the food we all eat on a regular basis and has at least one other major chain pondering its own products containing the chemical, but its use at other restaurant chains is fairly widespread and is just coming into light. It is important to realize that the product is approved for use in the U.S. as a dough conditioner and flour bleaching agent up to a certain limit, Apparently Europe and Australia have banned the substance as a food additive.
According to restaurant websites, the following is a list of some products that contain it as an ingredient:
- Arby’s: croissant, french toast sticks, harvest wheat bun, honey wheat bread, marble rye bread, mini bun, onion bread and sesame seed bun
- Jack in the Box: bakery style bun, jumbo bun, croissant, grilled sourdough bread and regular bun
- Chick-fil-A: chargrilled chicken sandwich, chicken salad sandwich, and chargrilled chicken club sandwich
- McDonald’s: regular bun, bakery style bun, bagel and english muffin, Big Mac bun and sesame seed bun.
- Burger King: specialty buns, artisan-style bun, sesame seed bun, croissant, english muffin, home-style caesar croutons and french toast sticks.
- Wendy’s: bagel, premium toasted bun, sandwich bun and panini bread
Following Subway’s announcement, McDonald’s spokeswoman Lisa McComb told CNBC in an interview that “Azodicarbonamide is commonly used throughout the baked goods industry, and this includes some of the bread goods on our menu. While this ingredient is recognized as safe and approved by the FDA, we listen to our customers and evolve to continue to serve the great tasting, quality food they expect from McDonald’s. This ingredient, like all the ingredients we use, is available to consumers on our website.”
Dunkin’ Donuts also said to CNBC in a recent response that, “There are trace amounts of azodicarbonamide, a common ingredient approved as safe by the Food and Drug Administration, in three Dunkin’ Donuts bakery items, including the Danish, Croissant and Texas Toast. All of our products comply with federal, state and local food safety standards and regulations. We are evaluating the use of the ingredient as a dough conditioner in our products and currently discussing the matter with our suppliers.”
Following the recent petition, on www.FoodBabe.com website, (who originally broke the story through her own research) the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest lobbied for the USDA to consider banning it. It noted that when bread containing the chemical is baked, it produces the carcinogen urethane and “leads to slightly increased levels of urethane in bread that pose a small risk to humans” when azodicarbonamide is used at its maximum limit. Evidence also suggests the product is harmful in its more industrial form. The United Kingdom’s Health and Safety Executive lists it as a substance that can cause occupational asthma. Meanwhile, a World Health Organization report states, “Case reports and epidemiological studies in humans have produced abundant evidence that azodicarbonamide can induce asthma, other respiratory symptoms, and skin sensitization in exposed workers. Adverse effects on other systems have not been studied.” So it is clean to us that if it affects the skin then it certainly will affect your health when consumed.
The lesson here folks is that we really have no idea what chemicals are used to manufacture the processed foods that we eat on a regular basis. It is likely that there are more laying in wake and further research will undoubtedly uncover more harm to our bodies from the consumption. The only solution is to begin growing your own fully organic food. This is the only way to control what you eat and have longevity and health.
You can learn how to begin growing your own fully organic food with an EZ Aquaponic kit of your own and a contribution will be made to the Global Aquaponic Initiative for efforts to combat global hunger.