If you’ve ever found yourself craving a cheeseburger or a fried chicken sandwich at a restaurant, you’re not alone.
But a new report suggests there are ways to avoid the temptation of consuming food additives to create the illusion of food that is actually artificial.
The report, published by the University of Minnesota and the University at Buffalo, found that while food additives are widely used to make food more appealing to consumers, there are a few key points to remember when it comes to what is and isn’t artificial in food.
The findings highlight that even if you eat a burger or a slice of pizza with a slice and a half of tomato sauce, it’s likely that the cheese is made from genetically modified (GM) or industrial-grade beef or pork, the report found.
That’s because the food additives used in these products are mostly from plants and animal sources.
The University at Buffalones study found that, of the 12 foods sampled, two of them (salami and chicken salad) had high levels of added sugars (including as much as 15% added sugar per serving).
These are often found in foods that are sold as packaged or fresh foods.
The third food was found to have an average of more than two teaspoons of added sugar in it per serving.
According to the report, the most common food additive in the processed foods surveyed was artificial sweeteners, including aspartame and sucralose, which is the main ingredient in the artificial sweetener aspartate.
Other commonly found additives included artificial flavors, preservatives, and colourings.
The study found three foods with the most artificial ingredients in them were baked goods, such as cookies, muffins, pies, and cupcakes.
Other common foods that had high amounts of artificial ingredients included: potato chips, candy, rice crackers, and ice cream.
The results of the study came from a survey of more then 3,000 adults, aged 18 to 80, from March through May 2017.
The survey found that 43% of the participants said they ate processed food that contained artificial ingredients.
The average daily amount of artificial sugar in processed food was 7.1 grams per serving, and about 3.4% of Americans reported eating processed food containing artificial ingredients daily.
The researchers also found that nearly 1 in 3 Americans reported they had eaten food at least once a day that was made with added sugars.
“While we don’t know the precise amount of sugar in our food, the majority of food additives we consume come from plants, and the majority are processed,” said study co-author and UB associate professor of marketing and public affairs Dr. Daniel T. Sorensen.
“For the majority, these additives are added to the food without the consumer’s knowledge or consent.”
A few common additives found in processed meats are sodium bicarbonate, sodium benzoate, and sodium lauryl sulfate.
“It’s important to note that not all of the ingredients in processed meat are derived from plants,” said Sorenesen.
Sarensen and Soren added that these additives were not listed in the USDA Food and Drug Administration (FDA) list of approved ingredients.
In fact, many of the additives used for food packaging in the U.S. are not listed on the agency’s website.
“In the case of sodium borohydrates, for example, most manufacturers do not list sodium borate as a component,” said Toni V. Roussel, PhD, a research scientist in the Department of Public Health at the University Health Services at the Buffalo Health System.
“The FDA does list borax as an approved food additive, but we don´t know what that means.
For instance, the FDA lists it as a ‘natural’ food additive because it’s derived from plant material, but the ingredients used in its manufacture are not plant-based,” she said.
According the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), aspartic acid is a natural preservative that can be used to prevent food spoilage.
The FSIS website lists aspartamol as an aspartamide derivative.
Aspartame, another natural preservatives found in many processed foods, is an artificial sweetening agent.
It has been used since the 1950s to prevent sugar from being absorbed into the bloodstream.
While it’s not a natural food additive and is not listed as one in the FDA’s list of ingredients, the researchers found that the chemicals found in some of the foods in their study were “likely from plants.”
The study also found high amounts and types of artificial flavourings found in the foods sampled.
The most common artificial flavour used in processed goods is artificial flavouring.
According a 2011 study published in the British Journal of Nutrition, the flavouring in processed products contains about 30% to 70% sucrose, with about 50% monosaccharides, such the phenols.
“Although these products can be made from a variety of plant materials, suc