Aluminium in Food

In my last post about aluminium in products, we covered the fact that aluminium was bad bad bad, and I am hoping that all of you who were using the anti perspirant deodorants containing this substance have thrown them out 🙂

I have eluded that aluminium is also used in foods as an additive and that is what this post is about. It is also used in vaccinations but I will not be covering that topic.

To keep it simple, here are the eight different “types” of aluminium you may find in your food:

  • Aluminium ammonium sulphate
  • Aluminium calcium silicate
  • Aluminium hydroxide
  • Aluminium oleate
  • Aluminium palmitate
  • Aluminium potassium sulphate
  • Aluminium sodium sulfate
  • Aluminium sulphate

Just to drive home to you what I am talking about, here is an example. This is what is on the MDSS (Material Data Safety  Sheet) for aluminium sulphate:

  • WARNING! HARMFUL IF SWALLOWED OR INHALED. CAUSES IRRITATION TO SKIN, EYES AND RESPIRATORY TRACT.”
  • This material hydrolyzes in water to form sulfuric acid, which is responsible for the irritating effects given below.”
  • “Inhalation: Causes irritation to the respiratory tract. Symptoms may include coughing, shortness of breath.”
  • “Ingestion: Causes irritation to the gastrointestinal tract. Symptoms may include nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. There have been two cases of fatal human poisonings from ingestion of 30 grams of alum.”

 

So you may ask, well where can I find this substance?

Well…. it’s a good anti-caking agent, so mostly in things that tend to lump up in damp conditions… like salt, baking powder, icing sugar, infant formula, tablets etc

Also used in food colouring, so things like drinks (sports drinks, cordials, fruit juices), lollies/candy, breakfast cereals.

Also used in water “purification”.

One of the uses which is my personal pet peeve is aluminium cans. Now, we know that there is aluminium in them because we call them “aluminium cans”. But what happens is that when you put a drink in it with some level of acidity, it causes the aluminium to leach into the drink itself.

Not naming any names but cola drinks are the worst as they contain orthophosphoric acid. And if you throw the “diet” into the mix (with all the aspartame going on in there) you have yourself a powerful little mix.

Yet another thing I find annoying is that you can go into a bakery and think “oh this stuff must be safe, they are the ones making it after all”. Yeah but no. Salt and baking powder could have aluminium as well as that icing/frosting on top, especially if it’s a pretty colour.

Won’t even go into how angry I am about the fact “they” find it okay to use it in infant formula.

So there it is. The information is yours, the choice is yours, try and make it a happy healthy one 🙂

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