Tuesday, July 20, 2010

15 Modern Conveniences that Are Bad for Your Health

1: Partially Hydrogenated Oils
Partially hydrogenated oils are added to foods to increase shelf life. This good intention is not consistent with good health. These oils provide fats that are very harmful to the cells of our body. Our cells will try to use these incorrect oils anyway, but the consequences are damage to the blood vessels and lack of needed oxygen to our cells.
2: High-fructose Corn Syrup
High-fructose corn syrup is a potent sweetener found in a large amount of processed foods. Since it is cheaper to manufacture, it has replaced sugar as the sweetener in soft drinks, jams, jellies and even bread. Unfortunately, it is really too potent for the body and contains mercury from the manufacturing process. Many speculate that the rise in obesity and the rise in the use of high-fructose corn syrup are not a coincidental relationship.
3: Margarine
Margarine has been heralded for many years as the safe replacement for butter to better prevent heart disease. Margarine is no safer, does not help in the absorption of vitamins (which butter can) and may actually increase the risk of heart disease.
4: Fat
Fat has remained a poorly understood topic after over 50 years of being a public enemy. In trying to avoid fat, patients have found themselves feeling worse and gaining weight. Many people are not taught that many vitamins and nutrients need healthy amounts of fat to be absorbed. The body has requires essential fatty acids for the heart, brain, nerves and healthy function of basically every cell in the body.
5: Genetically Modified Foods
The safety of genetically modified foods never been confirmed in large human studies for adults, children or pregnant women. Yet many people are eating genetically modified soy or corn having no idea what the consequences will be.
6: Growth Hormones
Animals treated with various types of growth hormones (synthetic hormones) are not the best choice for our health. Sources of animal protein are best when they come from animals raised in a natural habit and food best suited for their needs. Examples would be eggs from free-range chickens and grass-fed beef.
7: Plastics
Plastics supply us with many modern conveniences. They are lightweight, flexible and useful for many different shapes and devices. They may also contain several types of potential carcinogens like bisphenol A or phthalates. Plastics, such as water bottles, are filling up our landfills at exponential rates. Caution and balance of our use and manufacture of plastics in needed.
8: Leaded Fuel
Leaded fuel was previously recognized as a major public health threat, and it has been removed in this country. Its use continues in many underdeveloped nations, and lead persists in the environment. Its effects are still present in children and adults, and we all pay the price.
9: Flame Retardant Bedding
While safety is a major concern for parents, flame retardant bedding is not ideal. Flame retardant chemicals air out from the bedding, and they are very unhealthy to whoever breathes them in. These chemicals become the problem for those who they are intended to protect.
10: Styrofoam
Styrofoam would make a great cup for holding a warm beverage if it were not the chemicals in the Styrofoam. There is concern the components of Styrofoam may be carcinogens. One chemical, styrene, is found in nearly all human subjects who have been tested. A better option would be to use your own coffee mug.
11: Cell Phones
Cell phones are apart of our lifestyle. Cell phones, cell towers and the ever increasing amount of electromagnetic frequencies will impact our health in ways which we still do not fully understand. Until we know for sure how safe, or unsafe, cell phones and the cell towers that power them are, we need to respect that they could present some health risks.
12: Microwaves
Microwaves are a daily part of meal preparation for most Americans. Reheating foods with a microwave is a great convenience. Cooking foods in a microwave for several minutes at a time may destroy nutrients in the food. When using a microwave, use it to quickly reheat food only.
13: Teflon
Teflon nonstick cookware makes clean up in the kitchen much more enjoyable, but Teflon comes with a price. It is considered a likely carcinogen, and it does not biodegrade. Choose other products like stainless steel or ceramic pots.
14: Amalgams
Amalgams, or silver fillings, were originally outlawed but over 150 years became regular practice. They are 50 percent mercury and will outgas mercury readily each day they are in the mouth. Safer filling materials are now available.
15: The Standard American Diet
The Standard American Diet (SAD) is by far the worst offender on the list. Our dietary practices over past several decades have strayed from what the body actually needs. Patients often ask what they should eat. Even nutritionists are often confused as to how to guide patients. This is not surprising as chronic illness, such as obesity and type 2 diabetes, are on the rise. Nutrition is ultimately and simply found in fresh, preferably organic, fruits and vegetables and healthy proteins. It is not found in vending machines, convenient marts or packages that sit on grocery shelves for months at a time.

Source : howstuffworks.com

1 comment:

  1. Polystyrene containers for food have been used safely for more than 50 years, having been tested and deemed safe by government agencies. Any minuscule amount of styrene that may migrate out of polystyrene containers into food is far too small to be of any health concern. Moreover, styrene occurs naturally in many foodstuffs, including cinnamon, beef, coffee and strawberries. Further, polystyrene has not been classified by any regulatory organization in the world to be a known human carcinogen.
    Priscilla Briones for the Styrene Information and Research Center (SIRC), Arlington, Virginia. SIRC (www.styrene.org) is a trade association representing interests of the North American styrene industry with its mission being the collection, development, analysis and communication of pertinent information on styrene.