The Additive Family

In the interests in broadening our horizons, this section is devoted to verse which falls outside the parameters of rhyme and metre.
Post Reply
Posts: 51
Joined: Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:57 pm
Location: Tasmania

The Additive Family

Post by ALANM » Wed Nov 13, 2019 9:59 pm

The Additive Family
(By Alan McCosker November 2019)

Have you ever looked at the labels, of the processed foods on your table
the explanation of colours and additives is vague and somewhat, inexplicable
implanted in small parts per million, these additives are considered the best thing
since sliced bread was newly invented but add them all up and it’s frightening

our authorities say avoid processed meats, like frankfurts salami and bacon
risk of cancer is small but why risk it at all, eat only fresh fruit and wild caught salmon
it’s thought sodium nitrite and sodium nitrate, are most likely to humans carcinogenic
they can be converted to nitro-samines in the gut, which for cancer increases my panic

nitrates and nitrites as sodium nitrite, at five hundred milli-grams to the kilo
in slow dried cured meat, packed and ready to eat, for you to just grab and go
monosodium L glutamate is added, to make great food taste even more great
finger lickin’ chicken’s, so finger lickin’, thanks to monosodium L glutamate

the bread that we toast in the morning, laced with calcium pro-pionate and salt
it stops your bread going mouldy but might make behaviour and learning difficult
reports that this is occurring, it is claimed have no scientific foundation
authorities maintain, there’s no health concerns, for us, or for our children

your chicken is washed in chlorine, your pork’s grown big on racto-pomine
your beef’s had a shot in the arm, of acetates, melen-gestrol, tren-bolone
your spuds have been grown in ground, that’s been thoroughly sprayed before planting
with herbicide, to kill off the weeds, while seed spuds get a fungicide dusting

Then there’s the numbers for additives, I thought, those numbers don’t seem very clear
when I looked a few up, I was totally flummoxed, the information was morbidly clear
colour additives in the one hundred range, give colour to foods you might sample
they can include, tartrazine, quinoline and good old sunset yellow for example

amaranth purple, derived from coal tar, caused cancer in animal tests
that’s number 123 and caused hyper-activity, asthma and eczema in rats
erythrosine, that’s number 127, caused thyroid cancer in animal tests
this cherry red colouring, in canned fruits and sweets that we might blindly ingest

colourings mixed with sodium benzoate, may be linked to kids bad behaviour
chuck into the mix carmoisine and ponceau, you might start to get the big picture
amaranth purple and erythrosine cherry red, are but some of the colours
reportedly removed by the giant Aldi, from their own brands along with some others

our authorities’ testing linked allura red, that’s number 129 on the label
with cancer in mice, now that’s not very nice but the evidence ain’t very substantial
colours ain’t needed in food, they might make it look attractive but don’t add to nutrition at all
avoiding really is simple, all that you have to do is give up, lollies, soft drink, cakes and cordial

preservatives that lie in the two hundred range, are used to stop soft drink degradation
potassium benzoate, mixed with ascorbic acid, creates benzene a known carcinogen
our authorities found that when carrying out testing, of cordials fruit juices and fruit drinks
more than half of those tested had traces of benzene, four times the amount safe to drink

when sulphur 220 and sulphur dioxide 228, are added to wine and dried fruits
imbibing may trigger an asthma attack, better give up the plonk ’n vegee juice
now, at this point it’s important to stress, there’s been vigorous and rigorous testing
our authorities say, in them we must trust, to keep us safe with what we’re ingesting

butylated-hydroxy-anisole-BHA, is a petroleum derivative synthetic
found in margarine, salad dressings and spreads, it is quite possibly carcinogenic
some studies have shown, that it can cause, cancer in rats mice and hampsters
on the three hundred list, hard to give it a miss, in chewing gum and in dessert mixes

now the plot thickens as we get to the fours, anti-caking and additives that thicken
methyl-cellulose, potassium-ferro-cyanide, a by-product of coal gas production
sodium-aluminium-silicate-anti-cake, used in coffee, grated cheeses and flours
aluminium may cause prenatal problems and is possibly linked to alzheimers

In the five hundred list, when added to food, hexyl-resorcinol shows estrogenic activity
this resembles the action of estrogen, which can be loosely connected to femininity
it’s anaesthetic, antiseptic and even anthelmintic, it’s also in cream for anti-aging
it can also be found in flake cereals and butter, and in many others we’re ingesting

Aspartame, an artificial sweetener, many more times sweeter than sugar
used in many foods, in sugar-free gum, mouthwash, toothpaste and many other
funded by industry, studies conclude, aspartame is safe for consumption
when industry takes a look at itself, it’ll come up smelling rosy, my assumption

again at this point it’s important to stress, there’s been vigorous and rigorous testing
our authorities would have us come to no harm, when it comes to what we’re ingesting
now it’s a moot point but I must confess, I think their assurances have little validity
if all the ppm’s were poured into a cup, then that cocktail of chemicals would be deadly

I have deliberately not, singled any additive out, I just don’t have the room in my writing
for the hundreds of others that live in our foods, so it’s only these few I am citing
if you’ve managed to read this far down the page, please read on, it ain’t far to the ending
maybe you’ll see, maybe you will agree, we’re like mushrooms or maybe like lemmings

before you tune out I’d like to point out, I’m neither scientist or chemist or food guru
what info I’ve gained is there written in plain, on the world wide web there on google
my rhyme’s up the putt and my meters all shot but that’s not what really concerns me
what bothers me more, is having to find, a safe way ‘round the additive family

User avatar
Posts: 1777
Joined: Sun May 04, 2014 5:39 pm
Location: Maryborough, Queensland

Re: The Additive Family

Post by Shelley » Fri Nov 15, 2019 5:22 pm

Very timely indeed Alan!

I have a severe allergy to tartrazine (102) also called saffron yellow (not to be confused with natural saffron). You mention tartrazine in your poem along with all of its sinister relations in the coal tar family.

It causes the symptoms of a type of epilepsy in me - but years ago an astute neurologist suspected that my episodes were not genetic but caused by something I was eating. It took 6 months to identify it, but he was absolutely right! I avoided it and had no problems. Then I deliberately ate it, and hey presto! An episode in no time!

Then I found it was banned in USA, South Africa and England, but still added to foods in Australia. That was about 20 years ago. Thankfully there is much more awareness surrounding the dangers these days, and it is not contained in as many foods as it used to be.

But as you say, fresh from the garden and home-baked is still the best!!

Shelley Hansen
Lady of Lines

"Look fer yer profits in the 'earts o' friends,
fer 'atin' never paid no dividends."
(CJ Dennis "The Mooch o' Life")

Posts: 51
Joined: Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:57 pm
Location: Tasmania

Re: The Additive Family

Post by ALANM » Fri Nov 15, 2019 11:21 pm

Hi Shelley,
My daughter and son-in-law have been in a fierce battle with the Additive Family for a few years now.Both our grandsons have allergies and have been under constant observation for ages.It breaks my heart when they say to me that they can't have this or that because they have reactions to so many things.
No-one will convince me we are not slowly being fed this multiplicity of chemicals in our food in order to satisfy the hunger for dollars.
So many of the maladies suffered by our children these days we never heard of years ago.
I'm glad you've been able to identify your allergy producing additive.
But we shouldn't worry about any of the hundreds of others, they've all been vigorously and rigorously tested and given the thumbs up.

Post Reply