1. Boxed Mac and Cheese — Banned ingredients: coloring agents yellow 5 and yellow 6. The “cheesy” neon-orange color in most store-bought mac and cheese is a result of dangerous dyes made from coal tar, which is also used to seal-coat and preserve products like shiny industrial floors as well as to kill bugs in lice shampoo. Studies have linked artificial food coloring to allergies, ADHD, and cancer in animals, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest.
Choose an organic brand, which means no added artificial colors, no dairy from cows treated with synthetic hormones, and no genetically modified ingredients. Even better, look for one that’s gluten- and wheat-free, such as Annie’s Homegrown Gluten-Free Rice Pasta Shells and White Cheddar
2. Sports Drinks — Banned ingredients: coloring agents blue 1 and blue 2. Similar to yellow 5 and 6, these unnaturalhues offer a rainbow of health risks, including messing with the cognitive function of hyperactive kids, who performed poorly on tests that measured their ability to recall images.
Choose plain water or natural coconut water that is a good source of electrolytes like potassium and magnesium
3. Fat-Free Chips – Contains Olestra (Olean) which is harmful to digestion system and causes weight gain.
Choose organic chips that have been cooked with coconut oil
4. Citrus-Flavored Sodas — Banned ingredient: BVO (brominated vegetable oil). This food additive features bromine, the same ingredient used with some flame retardants in furniture and plastics. BVO may also cause build-up in fatty tissues and create reproductive and behavioral problems.
Choose sparkling water and add wedge of lemon or lime
5. Flatbreads and Wraps – Banned ingredient: potassium bromate (aka brominated flour). May be linked to kidney and nervous system disorders and gastrointestinal discomfort.
Choose organic lettuce leafs for wraps
6. Boxed Pasta Mixes — Banned ingredient: azodicarbonamide. Linked to asthma and is banned in Singapore, Australia, the UK, and most European countries.
Choose gluten-free, wheat-free pasta mixes.
7. Cereal Snack Mixes – Banned ingredients: BHA and BHT. They are found to increase the risk of cancer in animals, and BHA is a human carcinogen. Also contains heart-unfriendly trans-fats disguised under the new name “monoglycerides.”
Choose organic cereal snack mixes
8. Non-Organic Yogurt — Banned ingredients: rBGH and rBST. Non-organic yogurts generally come from dairy cows that have been given growth hormones rBGH and rBST to boost milk product. Unfortunately these also boost the level of another hormone called insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1), which has been tied to breast, colon, and prostate cancers in some human studies. Many yogurts also contain artificial food colorings and sugar substitutes or high-fructose corn syrup and have little protein, making them less satisfying.
Choose Organic Greek yogurts and added fresh organic, non-gmo berries to top it off for added sweetness
9. Whole Conventional Store Bought Chicken — Banned ingredient: arsenic (found in chicken feed). In exchange for pinker, plumper poultry, which appears fresher, you get exposure to this cancer-causing toxin. Traces of an inactive ingredient used in Prozac may also be in some caged chickens’ systems (a “solution” to helping them deal with poor living conditions). Also contains broad-spectrum class of antibiotics, which are used to reduce infections and boost bird growth. Unfortunately indirectly consuming these drugs can cause antibiotic-resistant infections in humans.
Choose organic, grass fed, cage-free chickens