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Food Ingredients That Might Surprise You

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We all know that we don't want to know what's in a hot dog.  You probably looked up it up anyway or someone told you and you then had a hard time eating hotdogs for a while or maybe you stopped eating them.  Hotdogs are not the only food stuffs out there that have ingredients that might surprise or even gross you out a bit.  Let's take a look at a few.

Ice cream often lists cellulose as an ingredient.  Cellulose comes in a variety of forms but for ice cream it generally comes from wood pulp.  I bet you didn't know you were getting fiber from your ice cream!

Have you bought a processed food lately listed raspberry or vanilla flavors?  They often list these flavors as coming from natural ingredients.  One of the natural ingredients in those flavors is castoreum.   This flavoring comes from the castor sack of the beaver.  Here's a more formal description: castoreum is the yellowish secretion of the castor sac in combination with the beaver's urine, used during scent marking of territory.

Bread products often list L-Cysteine as an ingredient.  That sounds to me like an amino acid or something along those lines.  Well, it is an amino acid so score one for me.  However, I did not know that it is made from human hair and duck feathers.  L-Cysteine is supposed to improve food texture.

Fast-food restaurants use Silicon Dioxide as an ingredient to help keep meat from caking.  Silicone Dioxide, better known as silica is even better known as sand.

Confectioner's Glaze is a very pleasant sounding ingredient that makes candy look nice and shiny.  Of course, the term confectioners glaze sounds a great deal more appetizing than secretions from a bug that is native to Thailand.  Yup, secretions from a bug.

McDonaldsFilet-o-Fish and french fries are popular items on their menu.  Both of these foods share a common ingredient known as dimethylpolysiloxane.  You probably know it better as Silly Putty.  It's a form of silicon used to make Silly Putty but McDonalds uses it to make these foods fry better.

As unsavory as some of these ingredients sound they are not bad for you as far as I could tell from my research.  Most are very commonly used.

erick99 posted Oct 15, 2012

Maybe it's not bad but it sure sounds awful. I mght have to forget this information, I always liked the filet of fish. lol! Seriously, I do appreciate the information. Thanks.

grandma5 (rep: 57.8k) posted Oct 15, 2012


Pet food is worse. Especially if youre feedingyour pet a kibble you can buy as Walmart, Target, etc.

Acidbaby (rep: 7k) posted Oct 15, 2012


thank you for the reminder

mdgirl (rep: 7.1k) posted Oct 15, 2012


Even natural ingredients sound scary when you enumerate the many chemicals that make them up. It sounds even scarier that many natural ingredients contain compounds that are known to be as harmful as anything artificial that people get all alarmed about, but that's just the way nature is. Nothing is 100% harmless. Here's a good site to keep you up at night:

Note that many of the natural food products listed there have a dedicated toxicology entry.

fluffy (rep: 2.2k) posted Oct 15, 2012


interesting article, thank you

naturaldeal (rep: 3.3k) posted Oct 15, 2012


Good to know, interesting .....ummmhh no wonder the taste of products so good :)

newguy (rep: 298k) posted Oct 15, 2012


SO fun so useful to read ..I got the information you share with us.

smithbeauty (rep: -1) posted Oct 16, 2012


think of all the bugs in peanut butter......and think of all the sand we use to eat when everything was ground with stones.

encorez (rep: 10k) posted Oct 20, 2012


"it is made from human hair"

What part and how much "human" parts do we intentionally have to eat to make us canibalistic? That's disgusting...I'ma read my bread products better.

nthsll (rep: 12.5k) posted Oct 23, 2012