Do we really want to know?
Have you ever looked at a hot dog or a piece of bologna and wondered what is in processed meat? This is a question we should all ask but don’t want to know however ignorance is not bliss. What I don’t know wont hurt me is a huge lie and so is the idea of “if it taste good it must be fine”. We consume a huge amount of processed meat in America and we should take a look at what we are really eating. I am going to give you a brief list of ingredients to think about and I wont go into a lot of details about what each ingredient is but I can point you to resources that can.
Meat This is a good thing right? Well do you think a meat processor is going to use their best meat to grind up for salami? Will they turn a $20 steak into a $5 dollar pack of hot dogs? The fact is most of the meat going into processed meat is low quality and in many cases even putrid.
Artificial flavors and colors Because of the use of poor quality meat they have to put flavorings and coloring in to hide the problem.
Preservatives The biggest problem is nitrates that are chemicals used to cure the meat. The nitrates found in processed meats are frequently converted into nitrosamines, which are clearly associated with an increased risk of certain cancers. Meat cooked at high temperatures, as many processed meats often are, can also contain as many as 20 different kinds of heterocyclic amines, or HCAs for short. These substances are also linked to cancer.
Fillers Meat is expensive and there are cheap filler substances that get used like soy which causes problems with soy allergy’s and most soy is genetically modified (GMO).
By products This could be a myraid of parts and pieces of the animal or non animal that gets thrown into the pot. If it can be ground up to look like meat it may get used and it probably wont be on the label. There have been tests done that revealed pork or chicken in a hot dog but that species wasn’t even on the label, so imagine what else they could be using.
Sugar This has a couple of negative side effects and the biggest issue is with high fructose corn syrup. HFC is highly processed and is made with GMO ingredients and is very hard to digest. It makes for a false sense of flavor with its sweetness that often causes us to over eat.
Hard habit to break
It is understandable why we consume so much processed meats since they are so convenient with being ready to eat and unfortunately they do taste good in many cases. It is readily available in grocery stores and delis. However we need to keep in mind that we are paying a high price for this convenience with the environmental, health, economic, and social issues that go along with the making of processed meat.
Where do we start
Change starts with each individual. The choices we make with our time, money, and resources is important. If each one of us would commit to seeking out and supporting local, sustainable, safe, healthy food we would greatly enhance our well being and the well being of the community around us. Seek out naturally raised meat sources that raise their animals on managed pastures and the animals are getting the best nutrition creation can provide. If you want to learn more about what is in processed meat go take a look at Dr. Mercola’s website and search his articles for “processed meat”. The Weston A. Price foundation is a non profit organization dedicated to teaching the facts about food nutrition and quality and has a lot of information on what food should and shouldn’t be. If you want help in searching for good quality meat check out our store to see ways you can get safe, high quality meat for your family.
I hope you find this post helpful and I would like to hear your thoughts on this food matter so I would welcome any comments bellow.
Thank you and God Bless!