The Guardian’s List of 'Dangerous' Additives

Are we exaggerating about the chemicals found in what we consume?

Following Buzzfeed’s roundup of eight foods that are consumed in the United States, yet banned in other counties, the English publication, The Guardian created an ironic list of its own: six more food and drink additives that are “dangerous” to our bodies. 

1.E290 – Found in bread, prepackaged food, and carbonated beverages, E290 tops the list as one of the “worst” additives. You might recognize it as Carbon Dioxide, the product that we produce on a daily basis.

2. 8-methyl-N-vannillyl-6-nonenamide – You know the sweating, burning, and indigestion you get from spicy food? Blame it on this chemical, better known as Capsaicin. Although there is scientific evidence that points toward the benefits of using Capsaicin, this product is also found in pepper spray.

3. Denatured protein – Diseases like Parkinson’, Alzheimer’s, and CJD (human version of mad cow disease) all become present after proteins shape-shift. Proteins misfold during many cooking processes, such as frying an egg.

4. DHMO – Dihydrogen Monoxide, or DHMO, is found in fruit juice, and is also a product produced by rocket engines. Mineral water, rainwater, tap water, oceans, lakes, and rivers are all home to DHMO. Just think, you could be consuming the same chemical that was produced during the Hindenburg disaster while you sip your morning juice.

5. NaCl – Sodium and chloride are both poisons, and the combination of the two is found in all those salty snacks that you love. Nuts and chips contain the same ingredient that was uses as a warfare agent during the first world war.

6. Uranium – It glows in the dark and could be found in green glassware. You can even buy this “hazardous” chemical on the internet.


After reading both Buzzfeed’s list and Dr. Mark Lorch’s  ironic take on the matter, are you more or less worried about what is exactly in your food and beverages?