Foods and Food Additives that may cause FLARES in EM

Burning feet is characterized by severe aching, stinging and burning sensation of the feet. This may also be accompanied by sweating, swelling and inflammation of the affected foot/feet. While usually the burning sensation is limited to the soles of the feet, at times the pain may extend up to the ankles and the lower legs. Although the pain remains persistent throughout the day, it is usually at night that it intensifies.

Cause-specific Remedies

Inappropriate Footwear: A sensitivity or allergic reaction to the leather dyes used in leather footwear, or the material of the socks one is wearing can trigger off the burning foot sensation. Sometimes dampness in the foot caused by perspiration retaining cotton or woolen socks may lead to a mild and local form of burning feet.

# Remedy - Choose mesh shoes over leather ones. Also opt for socks made of cotton. This will allow the feet to breathe and prevent sweaty feet.

Erythromelalgia: Erythromelalgia - also known as the burning foot syndrome - is a medical condition which results in severe burning and aching of the feet. This is caused by circulatory and nervous system related problems or thiamine deficiencies.

# Remedy - Consuming foods that are rich in vitamin B (like whole grains, nutritional yeast and brown rice, peanuts and raw wheat germ, many types of green and yellow vegetables and dairy products including milk and butter) can help relieve the problem. – BE WARNED, They can also aggravate your EM as well …

*** In my personal experience any Wheat Based Products are the cause of the EM Flare-Ups and so are SOY based products and processed foods that use Alginic acid, also called algin or alginate, is an anionic polysaccharide distributed widely in the cell walls of brown algae, where through binding with water it forms a viscous gum. The chemical compound sodium alginate is the sodium salt of alginic acid. Its empirical formula is NaC6H7O6. Sodium alginate is a gum, extracted from the cell walls of brown algae.

Sodium Alginate (E401) is extracted from brown seaweed. It is used as a stabilizer for ice cream, yogurt, cream, and cheese. It acts as a thickener and emulsifier for salad dressings, pudding, jam, tomato juice, and canned products. It is a hydration agent for noodles, bread, cool and frozen products. In the presence of calcium and acid mediums, it forms resilient gels. It is a cold gelling agent that needs no heat to gel. It is most commonly used with calcium lactate or calcium chloride in the spherification process.

Sodium salt of alginic acid (E400), a natural polysaccharide, produced by different seaweeds of the family Phaeophyceae (Macrocystis pyrifera, Laminaria digitata, L. cloustoni, Ascophyllum nodosum)
High concentrations lead to impairment of iron uptake, as the iron is bound.

E-number

E400

Name

Alginic acid

Function

Stabiliser, gelling agent

Foods

Soft drinks, yoghurt, jam.

Description

Obtained from brown sea weed.

E-number

E401

Name

Sodium alginate

Function

Stabiliser, gelling agent

Foods

Syrups, sauces, ice cream, fruit drinks, fruit pie fillings.

Description

Derived from brown sea weed.

E-number

E407

Name

Carrageenan

Function

Stabiliser, gelling agent, thickener.

Foods

Milk drinks, ice cream, biscuits, jam, processed meats, pastries.

Description

Mixture of polysaccharides produced from a variety of red sea weeds.

Carrageenan: E407 - Processed eucheuma seaweed (PES) (407a)

  • Bulking agent
  • Carrier
  • Emulsifier
  • Gelling agent
  • Glazing agent
  • Humectant
  • Stabilizer
  • Thickener

A Food Additive That’s Not as Safe As You Think

If you look towards the back of the ingredients list on many processed foods you’ll frequently see an ingredient called carrageenan. Like lots of other confusing sounding food-stuffs, most people blithely consume it daily without a scintilla of awareness about what it actually is or whether or not it’s good for you.

Overall carrageenan is (mostly) harmless, but it has a variety of troublesome side effects that shouldn’t go unnoticed, most notably high correlations to colon cancer, inflammation, and a depressed immune system.

Carrageenan is a polysaccharide that’s derived from red seaweed. On a molecular level it’s actually very similar to plastic and is popular for that reason. It bends easily but snaps back into place, which makes it a useful additive to foods, gels, and foams.

It’s long been used to improve the texture of food, and the earliest reported uses of red seaweed to improve a food’s characteristics dates back to 600 BC in China. It began to be used commercially in the west starting in the 1930′s, and about 80% of the world’s red seaweed is harvested in the philippines.

Carrageenan is cheap, fairly docile, and easy to crank out. So it’s used in a lot things. You’ll often see it in milk products to improve viscosity, especially plant milks since they don’t have any cream. Its others uses include but are not limited to:

  • toothpaste
  • gummy products
  • dairy products/plant milks
  • beer
  • shoe polish
  • shaving cream

And the list goes on. You’ll often see carrageenan used in conjunction with agar, guar gum, or xantham gum.

Carrageenan has always gotten a free pass from the health community. It’s frequently used as a vegan alternative to gelatin and recently herbivores have come to its defense because dairy companies have been framing it as a “weird additive” in its milk commercials.

Carrageenan has a long and notable history of significant correlations to different types of cancer and acute-inflammatory responses which are not good for you, to say the least.

Inflammation

I was surprised to see that the most relevant, cited papers had little to do with carrageenan as a food additive, but instead focused on its ability to induce acute inflammation in rats. Here’s the page I saw:

http://scholar.google.com.au/scholar?q=inflammatory+response+to+carrageenan+in+rats&hl=en&as_sdt=0&as_vis=1&oi=scholart&sa=X&ei=s8U1VNvKOcHm8AXmzIHADA&ved=0CB8QgQMwAA

After digging a little deeper into the literature I was surprised to find that by far the most notable aspect of carrageenan in medical research is its clockwork like ability to induce oedema and other inflammatory responses in rats. They’ve been doing it in labs for more than 40 years.

Carrageenan ingested in large amounts promotes inflation in two ways: it depresses the activity of macrophages (big immune cells that act like garbage collectors) and induces the creation of histamine, Cox-2 and prostaglandins, all inflammation inducing compounds.

Cancer

Regular ingestion of carrageenan also has a high correlation to different sorts of gastrointestinal cancers in rats. Most of the research done on the carrageenan/cancer relationship has been done in southeast Asia, and thus is not as well publicized as other harmful food additives like MSG.

However, the trail of research on this issue is long, and pretty consistent. Carrageenan (particularly the “degraded” kind) regularly induces carcinogenesis, neoplasia, and intestinal lesions. By far the most impressive research in this issue was carried out by a professor named Kazuo Wakabayashi, who’s centered in Japan (I believe).

I won’t bore you and write The Unabbreviated Scholarly Review on Carrageenan and Carcinogenesis, but let me point out two relevant studies for you to chew on:

  • A clinical study conducted by Wakabayashi found that rodents were fed daily with a 5% carrageenan aqueous solution had a 100% incidence rate of colon metaplasis after 15 months.
  • As far as I know there have been no clinical studies conducted on humans, but they have been performed on mice, rabbits, guinea pigs, and mice and they all show a connection between carrageenan and colon cancer.

Food for thought. - So Is Carrageenan Safe?

Throughout most of the world carrageenan has been deemed “generally safe.” And in modest quantities it is, just like most other additives you consume in processed food.

However, I’m a bit miffed at the lack of attention its received for its potentially harmful side effects. The health community typically likes to throw stones at any and all preservatives added by the industrial process, and are quick to point out any harmful correlations that have been brought up in medical research. For example, the correlation between MSG and obesity has received a lot of scrutiny.

So I’m not sure why carrageenan gets a free pass. It shouldn’t.

Research and References on Carrageenan

Vinegar, R, et. al “Quantitative Studies of the Pathway to Acute Carrageenan Inflammation” Federation Proceedings. 1976, pgs. 2447-2456.

URL: http://ukpmc.ac.uk/abstract/MED/976489

Di Rosa, M, et. al. “Studies of the Mediators of Acute Inflammatory Response Induced in Rats in Different Sites by Carrageenan and Turpentine” Journal of Pathology. May, 1971. Pgs 15-29.

URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/path.1711040103/abstract

Wakabayashi, Kazuo, et. al. “Induction by Degraded Carrageenan of Colorectal Tumors in Rats” Cancer Letters. January 1978, pgs. 171-176.

URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0304383578942374

Watanabe, Kenshi, et. al. “Effect of Dietary Undegraded Carrageenan on Colon Carcinogenesis in F344 Rats Treated With Azoxymethane or Methylnitrosurea” Cancer Research. December 1978, pgs. 4427-4430.

URL: http://cancerres.aacrjournals.org/content/38/12/4427.full.pdf

Tobacman, Joanne. “Review of Harmful Gastrointestinal Effects of Carrageenan in Animal Experiments” Environmental Health Perspectives. October 2001, pgs. 983-994.

URL: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1242073/pdf/ehp0109-000983.pdf

Guay, Jocelyne, et. al. “Carrageenan-Induced Paw Edema in Rat Elicits a Predominant Prostaglandin E2 Response in the Central Nervous System Associated with the Induction of Microsoma PGE2 Synthase-1″ Journal of Biological Chemistry. June 2004, pgs 24866-24872.

URL: http://www.jbc.org/content/279/23/24866.full.pdf+html

Salvemini, Daniela, et. al. “Nitric Oxide: A Key Mediator in the Early and Late Phase of Carrageenan-Induced Rat Paw Inflammation” British Journal of Pharmacology. Pgs 829-838.

URL: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1909531/pdf/brjpharm00083-0008.pdf

Carrageenan is a compound extracted from red seaweed that is added to improve the texture and mouth feel of foods. Its widespread use as an additive in foods began in the 1930s, initially in chocolate milk, and now it is found in yogurt, ice cream, soy milk, almond milk, deli meats, and meal replacement shakes.

For decades different groups and scientists have been trying to get the FDA to ban carrageenan as a food additive due to potential damage that it can cause to the digestive tract. More recently, this argument has been reignited with a consumer report and petition by the advocacy and food policy research group Cornucopia entitled, "How a Natural Food Additive Is Making Us Sick."

However, the FDA has yet to reopen the review on the safety of carrageenan, citing that there is no new data to be considered. The FDA doesn’t seem to be acting stubborn here, as just last year they considered and subsequently rejected a petition by Joanne Tobacman, M.D., a professor at the University of Illinois, to ban carrageenan. Dr. Tobacman has been researching the additive and its impacts on inflammation and inflammatory diseases in animals and cells for the last 10 years.

What should you do? Right now there really isn’t any data in humans that shows it poses adverse health effects. However, there is animal and cell culture data that does suggest it could cause damage to your gut and exacerbate inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disease. For some people, the red flags from the animal data is enough to warrant removal from their diet, while others would prefer to see these same negative findings in human studies before swearing off a particular ingredient.

This is an individual decision. One of the great things about food in America is that we have a myriad of choices. Personally, I don’t think the data at this point warrants the time to check labels and buy carrageenan-free products. With the increased buzz surrounding carrageenan, I’m sure we’ll have additional research in humans in the future to give us a more definitive answer.

Diabetic Neuropathy: People suffering from diabetes may develop some form of nerve damage and this may result in burning feet. This medical condition is known as diabetic neuropathy. While the presence of high levels of blood sugar can affect the nerves in any part of the body, the nerves in your feet and legs are much more susceptible to the condition.

# Remedy - Appropriate treatment to control diabetes and keep blood sugar levels within normal range along with opting for a healthy lifestyle can help control the problem. NOT so with EM.

Fungal Foot Infections: Fungal infections like Athlete's foot develops in moist areas between your toes and on other parts of your foot, thus resulting in itching, inflamed red skin, stinging and burning sensations in the foot.

# Remedy - The best way to prevent Athlete's foot is by washing and drying the feet. A doctor may also be able to recommend the correct powders or other medication forms as remedies for Athlete's foot.

Hypothyroidism: Hypothyroidism results in an inadequate production of certain hormones. This results in joint pain and burning feet, obesity and heart diseases.

# Remedy - Treatment using a synthetic thyroid hormone is usually a safe and effective way of relieving the pain once the proper dosage is established.

Other Remedies

☞ People suffering from this disorder should wear mesh shoes or ones with an arch support. If possible, socks should be changed halfway through each day. Magnetic therapy insoles can also help provide relief.

Regular exercising and massaging your feet can improve the circulation in the feet and help relieve the symptoms.

Eat green leafy vegetables containing vitamin B complex as it is very healthy in this condition and helps in early recovery.

Niacin (Vitamin B3) should be added to the diet, the richest form of which in brewer's yeast. Other sources are wheat bran, wheat germ, whole grain products, milk, green vegetables, beans, peas, peanuts, yogurt and egg yolk should be taken regularly. NOT for my EM, makes it worse …

☞ Intake of certain vitamin supplements especially vitamin B1, vitamin B2 and pathothenic acid can reduce or eliminate the nerve inflammation and burning feet. In addition to that the intake of vitamin B6 and B12 supplements can eliminate the pins and needle sensation. Does NOT work for my EM.

Cold foot baths will stimulate and give strength to the feet. (Can cause more damage)

☞ Avoid long periods of standing.

☞ Certain cooling creams or ointments can help relieve the symptoms.

Pain relievers like aspirin or acetaminophen can also help provide relief. (for some)

Addressing the underlying conditions or these home remedies might be effective but treatment of burning feet needs the cause to be established. For this you would need to consult a podiatrist, rheumatologist or a neurologist.

PLEASE try different foods that you think cause FLARES in EM and see what you find – you might be surprised as I was/am … Elimination diet/s are the only way to test foods/food additives …. 5 days without the things you think may be causing you grief and them maybe up to 3 days of eating the eliminated food/product – this must be done for each one separately – one at a time otherwise you will not know what it is that is causing the problem …

Caffiene is a big NO NO for me …. ACID foods are a NO NO – Tomatoes & Pienapple are two that come to mind – there are others – even Lettuce is no go …

Everything you can do to help yourself is of some benefit ….

Regards –

Greg – (frostbite)

COOMA NSW

Australia

PS – If I don’t respond straight away then please don’t worry as I might not be feeling to well.

2 Likes

Dear Greg.

Thank you so much for taking up the challenge ;). This is an AMAZING article! I know how poorly you are and how much time, effort and energy it took to write this. THANK YOU from the Mod team and entire EM community.

Foodstuff's, allergy/additive information is invaluable for EM'ers - absolutely invaluable!

This will be pinned with the 'info for new members' alongside Tizzy's icing article.

Bless you !

Hope you are feeling more'comfortable' today ((((((Greg))))))

Biggest hug

mads x

NB: IF ANYONE WOULD LIKE A TOXICITY TEST GUIDE- CALLED THE 'PULSE TEST' , WHICH YOU CAN DO AT HOME , FOR FREE TO HELP YOU ELIMINATE POTENTIAL TRIGGER FOODS- JUST ASK :)

1 Like

Many thanks Frostbite for a remarkable treatise which is food for thought indeed.

Mads, I would like to see the Pulse Test, just to compare it with an elimination diet I did 15 years ago, long pre-EM, when my arthritis began to give me real problems. I lost a lot of weight, cried with hunger as I cooked for the family after a long day at work and learnt nothing.

Hi Dkel - No worries - there are a lot of things that can trigger EM as I have found out - knowing some details might just help someone out - and the main problem with the Seaweed based thickening agents here in Australia is that the manufacturer does not have to list them as food additives as they are deemed safe for consumption ... I get caught out by them sometimes, but I sure am aware of them now .... There are a lot more that I haven't covered but these (listed) are certainly widely used in food preparations of all kinds ....

Yeah, I hope I feel better soon too ... Not good having severe chronic pain - I don't like it one bit ..

Cheers and take care

Greg.

No wories Nel - The info might come in handy for you down the track .... Cheers & take care - Greg.

Nel said:

Many thanks Frostbite for a remarkable treatise which is food for thought indeed.

Mads, I would like to see the Pulse Test, just to compare it with an elimination diet I did 15 years ago, long pre-EM, when my arthritis began to give me real problems. I lost a lot of weight, cried with hunger as I cooked for the family after a long day at work and learnt nothing.

Hi David -

Sounds like your Mrs is onto it as well - there are so many additives not disclosed on the labels it is no wonder that so many people have issues with them - whatever happened to normal food ? it does cost to eat organicly but it is the best way to go - pity the supermarkets dont have organic foods - they do sell some of them but not enough variety and the cost factor is always a factor when shopping ...

Some GOOD NEWS on the feet front (Halleluljuah) - I was prescribed LYRICA (Pregabalin) yesterday and I took some aspirin as well - Feet were a little less painfull when I went to bed last night - I took another lyrica and 2 aspirin before bed and this morning they are about 70% better - I can put weight on the right foot today and the swelling and redness is down by 50% - Hoping it continues ....

Cheers mate - All the Best to you & your family, take care -

Greg ...



dkel9307 said:

Cheers Greg

I know first hand (well, via my wife) how hard it is to work out what's really in the food we buy.

I live in Adelaide, South Australia.

Take care,

David

frostbite said:

Hi Dkel - No worries - there are a lot of things that can trigger EM as I have found out - knowing some details might just help someone out - and the main problem with the Seaweed based thickening agents here in Australia is that the manufacturer does not have to list them as food additives as they are deemed safe for consumption ... I get caught out by them sometimes, but I sure am aware of them now .... There are a lot more that I haven't covered but these (listed) are certainly widely used in food preparations of all kinds ....

Yeah, I hope I feel better soon too ... Not good having severe chronic pain - I don't like it one bit ..

Cheers and take care

Greg.

Although, I do not have EM I am pretty confident that there are a lot of grateful people on here that appreciate you taking the time to research and post this article.

Hi fleur bird 1978 -

Thanks for the appreciation, but all I did is some research that I thought might be worthy of notice for EM sufferers or anyone who has allegies or intollerances or those who think they may have - it might just be the missing link for some answers or help ....

Please tell anyone and everyone that is interested - as everybody deserves to know of the things they are eating/drinking that may cause them problems, now or in the future .... just doing my bit to help .... I like doing research, it gives me something to do - it is very interesting and can be rewarding when you find out some relevant information that will help people ...

Cheers to you and take care -

Greg (frostbite) ...

COOMA NSW

Hi Tizzy - I am just so glad that something is working at last - it hasn't been to bad today the pain I have been experiencing this last month has been intense ... today a lot better but not pain free - but able to cope with what is there a lot better .... Early days as yet but a reprieve is a reprieve and I am greatful for that .... I will persue the Myeloproliferative disorder with my GP or any Doctor that is interested and willing to help - as I will gladly take any help I can get ...

I like your comments about "The Happy Herb" shop near you ... Hmmmm might be a good shop ...

Cheers & Take care -

Greg (frostbite)

COOMA NSW

Tizzy said:

Greg ! Good news !
So pleased Lyrica is helping - it has been good for me.
Just a reminder though, because you are a good bloke and we don't want to lose you - slow down!
After all that work the other day and now you are racing again, rest ,please just enjoy the break from pain.
Also, in other info ,I found I had to take the Lyrica for 6 weeks before drowsiness wore off, so in case you feel a bit spacey in the next bit don't panic! Maybe you will be lucky and escape this side effect !

With asprin , I did research a while back , some of it was in a meds for EM ,a bit back. The thing that became clear is that Aspirin does help those with a predilection to myeloproliferative disease but Asprin is still useful in people who do not .

Reasons asprin may help general EM population is that it thins the blood and this is good as for many it is NOT the blood thinning per sec that is the advantage BUT rather the fact that it allows the blood to get into the damaged small vessels.

Thin blood goes more easily into vessels damaged by repeated episodes of swelling - therefore it is it can help in EM without myeloproliferative disease.

All of us with EM and no specific diagnosis of underlying disease should have regular blood tests as there is an increased risk of going on to develop myeloproliferative disease. That is not the same as cancer( can go on to become ,but not a given)
Wishing you a continued good result and hope this satisfies enough of your curiosity for now !




frostbite said:

Hi David -

Sounds like your Mrs is onto it as well - there are so many additives not disclosed on the labels it is no wonder that so many people have issues with them - whatever happened to normal food ? it does cost to eat organicly but it is the best way to go - pity the supermarkets dont have organic foods - they do sell some of them but not enough variety and the cost factor is always a factor when shopping ...

Some GOOD NEWS on the feet front (Halleluljuah) - I was prescribed LYRICA (Pregabalin) yesterday and I took some aspirin as well - Feet were a little less painfull when I went to bed last night - I took another lyrica and 2 aspirin before bed and this morning they are about 70% better - I can put weight on the right foot today and the swelling and redness is down by 50% - Hoping it continues ....

Cheers mate - All the Best to you & your family, take care -

Greg ...



dkel9307 said:

Cheers Greg

I know first hand (well, via my wife) how hard it is to work out what's really in the food we buy.

I live in Adelaide, South Australia.

Take care,

David

frostbite said:

Hi Dkel - No worries - there are a lot of things that can trigger EM as I have found out - knowing some details might just help someone out - and the main problem with the Seaweed based thickening agents here in Australia is that the manufacturer does not have to list them as food additives as they are deemed safe for consumption ... I get caught out by them sometimes, but I sure am aware of them now .... There are a lot more that I haven't covered but these (listed) are certainly widely used in food preparations of all kinds ....

Yeah, I hope I feel better soon too ... Not good having severe chronic pain - I don't like it one bit ..

Cheers and take care

Greg.

Guys,

This is called the 'pulse test' for toxicity - foods, drinks, clothing etc...

I use this as a way of life to try to minimise making my body work overtime.

Free copy attached.

Let me know how you get on.

Intolerance to lettuce was big surprise lol!

God bless

206-DeterminingFoodAllergy.docx (50.9 KB)

Thanks Mads - I got it on a word doc ok - Will have a read later - many thanks ...Cheers Greg - alias frostbite

Thank you Mads. I’ve added it to my reading list:)

Hi Greg! Thanks so much for all of the info. I'm newly diagnosed. My has been worse in the last 3 years as I go more and more gluten free...now I can see maybe why...maybe all the Xanthum Gum? GF products almost alway have Xanthum Gum in them as an emulsifier. A lot of dietary considerations here for me. Thanks again for your hard work!

Hi GypsyGirl -

Yes it is a worry trying to find foods and drinks without additives these days - Just google Xanthum Gum and look for the Wikipedia site and have a read of that - quite interesting - they make the gum from Corn, Wheat, Soy and Dairy byproducts - mostly ok except for people who have reactions to the above ....

I hope you find the problem/s and get yourself better ...

Take care -

Greg.

To add to Frostbites stuff .

The FDA legally classified substances added to food into four categories:

1. Food additives

2. Generally recognized as safe (GRAS) substances

3. Prior sanctioned items

4. Food colours.

Hundreds of food additives were classified as GRAS in 1958, based on common experience and apparent safety record. These include sugar, salt, spices, vitamins, minerals, milk, and egg protein. The GRAS list is periodically updated as new safety data are available. Thus cyclamate, sulfites, several food colors and saccharin were removed when their safety was found wanting. Prior sanctioned additives are those agreed on before 1958. Nitrite used as a preservative for processed meat is an example. That a food is prior-sanctioned or that it is on the GRAS list does not assure safety; it must be evaluated in light of more current knowledge and more advanced technology.

Excluding salt, sweeteners, and sugar, the average yearly U.S. consumption of food additives like flavors, preservatives, and colors is 5 to 10 pounds per person. Food additives are used extensively by the food industry to help create a huge variety of processed foods. These manufactured foods tend to have a high level of fat and oil, salt, sugar, preservatives, and artificial coloring, and lower levels of several important nutrients.

food additives list Wake Up to Whats in Our Food!

Common Functions of Food Additives:

  1. Anti caking agents are added to powdered or crystalline products to prevent lumping, e.g., silicon dioxide, cornstarch, calcium silicate.
  2. Antimicrobial agents preserve foods by preventing growth of bacteria, molds, and yeasts, e.g., calcium propionate, sodium benzoate.
  3. Antioxidants retard deterioration or rancidity and discoloration due to oxidation, e.g., vitamin C (ascorbic acid), vitamin E, BHA, BHT, propyl gallate.
  4. Curing and pickling agents provide characteristic flavors and increase shelf life, e.g., sodium nitrate, sodium nitrite.
  5. Emulsifiers establish a uniform dispersion, e.g., lecithin, carrageenan.
  6. Enzymes can improve food processing, e.g., glucose oxidase, meat tenderizers.
  7. Flavor enhancers increase original taste without imparting their own flavors, e.g., disodium guanylate, disodium inosinate, hydrolyzed vegetable protein.
  8. Flavorings impart a taste or aroma to food, e.g., sodium chloride, sucrose, and many artificial flavoring agents.
  9. Flour treatment agents are bleaching and maturing agents added to flour, e.g., benzoyl peroxide, azodicarbonamide.
  10. Food colors or color adjuncts are used to enhance a color or impart a color to a food, e.g., canthaxanthin, caramel, FD&C colors (Blue No. 1, Red No. 3, Yellow No. 5, and others), grape skin extract. Certain chemicals can stabilize or fix a food color.
  11. Humectants absorb water and help keep foods moist, e.g., invert sugar, dextrose, glycerin (glycerol).
  12. Leavening agents produce carbon dioxide in baked goods, e.g., sodium bicarbonate, yeast.
  13. Artificial sweeteners have less than 2 percent of the caloric value of sucrose (table sugar) when used at the same level of sweetness. They include saccharin and aspartame.
  14. Nutrient additives like iron, thiamine, and riboflavin enrich white flour and partially replace some of the nutrients lost in preparing bleached flour. Iodide (the chemical form of iodine) is used to fortify salt.
  15. Nutritive sweeteners include sucrose, dextrose, corn syrup, and high fructose corn syrup.
  16. Many pH control agents change or maintain the acidity or alkalinity of a food. These include acids, bases, and buffers like dihydrogen phosphate, acetic acid, phosphoric acid, and citric acid.
  17. Processing aids include clarifying agents, clouding agents, and crystallization inhibitors. Filter aids are used to clarify beer, for example.
  18. Propellants are used to expel a product. Carbon dioxide and other gases have replaced chlorofluorocarbons in foams and aerosols.
  19. Sequestrants combine with metal ions to form complexes. This action improves product stability, e.g., citric acid, ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA).
  20. Thickeners produce viscous solutions while stabilizers form stable suspensions (emulsions). They impart “body” to foods or beverages, e.g., carob bean gum, agar, and alginates, as found in salad dressing, whipped cream, cheese, pudding, and frozen desserts.
  21. Surface finishes increase palatability, preserve gloss and inhibit food discoloration, e.g., polishes, waxes, and glazes.
  22. Texturizers alter the appearance and “mouth feel” of food; e.g., pectins, gum ghatti, and gum arabic.

Food Safety

The most questionable additives are artificial food colors because they may cause cancer and/or allergic reactions and their use is strictly cosmetic. Consumer advocates claim they could be eliminated without altering the nutritional value of the food. Other food additives are potentially harmful; for example, sodium nitrite, a preservative, can be converted to a class of compounds (in the stomach and intestine) that cause cancer. Saccharin, an artificial sweetener, also causes cancer in lab animals. Its use has been continued through congressional action, though saccharin-containing food must bear a warning label.

Nutritive sweeteners like sugar (sucrose) and salt are by far the most common food additives.Sweetners represent empty calories because they do not supply minerals, vitamins, protein, or fiber. Americans eat 28 billion pounds of sweeteners each year; the yearly per capita consumption is 130 to 150 pounds. There is consensus that excessive sugar consumption contributes to tooth decay and to obesity, now considered a leading disease in the U.S. Salt (sodium) is often added to processed foods because they lack flavor. The yearly U.S. consumption of salt per person is 10 to 15 pounds. A high-sodium diet contributes to high blood pressure in some people, who have an increased risk of dying from heart disease. There is no easy way to identify those who are sensitive to sodium ahead of time.

E133 - brilliant blue is missing from the danger list. Possibly because it is already banned in Europe. It's in one of my pain medications. I suspect its making me a little more prone to flares (i had thought this before i knew about brilliant blue) and I have recently spoken about it with my pain specialist but he is resistant to changing my medication because it is working to a degree (not well enough, but it helps). I wish they would follow suit in australia and ban the colouring here too.

blue

It’s in my warfarin medication too so not banned in UK.

Great article on excitotoxins 'The taste that kills' by Dr Russell Blaycock

http://www.infiniteunknown.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Excitotox...

Top 7 foods to avoid

http://www.healthyfoodhouse.com/top-7-foods-that-people-who-suffer-...

Hi Mads -

Hey what a great article - it reinforces what I have thought for a long time but didn't know what it was called - but NOW I DO Know and will do some research on it - but the article is reasonably in depth and conveys just how dangerous the "FOODS" we eat - are to us all ....

I can eat fresh Beef with no issues but if I have a Beef Burger from M'c Donalds - and eat just the meat pattie I have a flare with the feet - I tried it a while ago as a test and believed then, that they were lacing the burgers with MSG, but they said "NO we don't use it" .... Bull$hot they don't ...

I very rarely eat out anywhere these days - it just isn't worth it - but even eating at home can have it's pitfalls as everyday food(s) can be a trap if you aren't cautious when shopping and you can get caught out without realising it till the flare up starts (and continues) ...

Thank you so much for contributing to the ever growing list of Foods that Cause Flares in EM - and a big Thanks to all the other contributors as well - it is GOOD to SHARE INFO ...

Cheers to ALL - Take care and be cautious especially around Christmas time with all the yummies available -remember it just isn't worth the PAIN - so Stay Strong and say NO to Nasty Foods (even if they taste great) - Remember the PAIN ...

Have a Great Christmas & New Year -

Greg - (frostbite)

COOMA NSW

Australia.

mads said:

Great article on excitotoxins 'The taste that kills' by Dr Russell Blaycock

http://www.infiniteunknown.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Excitotox...