We have heard many comments such as "if I can't pronounce it, I won't eat it" or "if it has more than 2 syllables, it is not real food". Most of the time it is a simple matter of change for people. They are venturing into an eating plan that incorporates new ingredients to which they are unfamiliar. Here is a quick guide to some of the ingredients that you may find in our products:
Tempeh is a healthy and convenient protein to have handy for quick nutrient rich meals. Traditionally, it is made from whole cooked soybeans that are lightly crushed and fermented with a mold called rhizopus oligosporus. This white mold produces a natural heat-stable antibiotic that helps support the immune system and increases digestive ability. It is high in Omega-3 fatty acids and B vitamins. It can be frozen, keeps in the fridge for weeks. Other legumes can be used such as chickpeas, lentil or black beans (see Culture City). Great source of probiotics.
Potassium Chloride is a common, naturally occurring mineral. It is typically extracted from the ground via solution potash mining; that is, water is injected into the ground where potassium chloride deposits exist, the water dissolves the potassium chloride and the saturated brined is pumped back to the surface and the water is evaporated leaving the potassium chloride behind. Potassium chloride may also be extracted from the sea, in a similar process that is used to produce some sea salts.
It has been affirmed as safe by the FDA as a multipurpose ingredient with no limitation other than current good manufacturing practice, which means food manufacturers can use it a levels necessary to achieve its intended effect in a food product.
It can be found in coffee, herbal tea, alcoholic beverages, cider, condiments, seasonings, vinegar, etc. It is often used as a thickener, stabilizer, firming agent and flavour enhancer (a salt substitute). The acceptable daily intake for chloride salts is "not limited", which is indicative of their very low toxicity to humans.
*Information from Cargill.com
Carrageenans are a family of polysaccharides that are extracted from red edible seaweeds. They are widely used in the food industry for the gelling, thickening and stabilizing properties as an alternative to the animal based gelatin used in many commercial products.
There are 2 forms or carrageenan: food grade and degraded. Food grade carrageenan has been used for hundreds of years and has been extensively reviewed and approved for use in foods. Degraded carrageenan was found to be harmful, but it is NOT used in foods, as it does not provide any thickening properties. Even though degraded carrageenan and food-grade carrageenan are different, the harmful effects in its degraded form have been mistakenly associated with food-grade carrageenan.
Food-grade carrageenan has been independently evaluated by the joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives, an international panel of expert toxicologists who review data and develop recommendations about food ingredients. This panel determined that food-grade carrageenan was a safe food additive with no limits on its use in food.
*information from followyourheart.com
Konjac is a common name of the Asian plant "Amorphophallus Konjac" which has an edible corm. It is used as a vegan substitute for animal based gelatin and has many health benefits. The high fibre content provides a soluble fibre that help lower cholesterol and blood glucose levels among the other benefits of a high fibre diet.
*information from healthline.com
Xanthan gum is a polysaccharide produced from different simple sugars using a fermentation process and derives its name from the strain of bacteria used, Xanthomonas campestris. This is the same bacteria that causes black rot on cauliflower and other leafy vegetables.
It is primarily used to increase the viscosity of a liquid and as an emulsifier. It also helps suspend solid particles such as spices, adds texture to ice creams, a binder in toothpaste, thicken egg substitutes, etc. It also gives dough the stickiness needed when using gluten free options.
The FDA considers xanthan gum safe for consumption as a food additive. It has also been linked to potential health benefits (such as lowering cholesterol & blood sugar, weight loss,etc) , but unlikely to occur without taking supplements.
*information from healthline.com
Maltodextrin is a white powder made from corn, rice, potato starch or wheat. It is highly processed to make it water soluble and has a neutral sweet taste. It is generally used as a thickener or filler to increase the volume of a processed food. It's also a preservative that increases the shelf life of packaged foods.
The U.S. FDA has approved it as a safe food additive. It is and easily digestible carbohydrate that is metabolized in the body like a sugar.
*information from Body-med.ca
Ferrouse sulphate is a mineral - iron!
Many people are not familiar with the formal name of the everyday vitamins our bodies require and mistake them for mysterious and therefore harmful chemicals. Here are some examples that are listed in the ingredients of products:
Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), Biotin (vitamin B7), folate (vitamin B9) cyanocobalamin (B12), methylcobalamin (also B12), Pyridoxine (vitamin B6),Ergocalciferol (vitamin D2), Tocopherol (vitamin E)....get the picture?
*information from Wikipedia
Food grade Calcium hydroxide or "lime water" is an inorganic compound obtained when calcium oxide is mixed with water. Among its uses are clarifying sugarcane juice, pickling, fortifying drinks with calcium, substitute for baking soda, production of beers & ales.
Health Canada lists this as a permitted product to control acidity or alkalinity of a food or to prevent a food from drying out.
Similar to vitamins, the formal names of minerals can sound a bit threatening: Chromium (needed for glucose metabolism), Selenium (antioxident), Cobalt (synthesizes vitamin B12), etc.