Be careful if you ‘eat pretty well’

NOTE: This is not to be unkind to people or companies trying to do good. It is simply a message of education. A message to remind us that it is our job as individuals to know exactly what we consume, inhale and absorb.

I am told very frequently by people with ranging symptoms of ill health,

I eat pretty well

They’re not lying.

Their symptoms are varied, including but not limited to:

  • Weight gain
  • Anxiety/depression
  • Inflammation
  • Irritability
  • Pain anywhere (headaches, joints, muscles, stomach….)
  • Energy depletion
  • Skin conditions

But when I dive in a little deeper, this ‘eating pretty well’ is still exposing them to toxicity without many even knowing it.

One little example, and there are many, is a coconut fish curry with broccoli and quinoa. Sounds deliciously healthy. I listen to people rave about their healthy eating through this company. And my question is ‘healthy compared to what?’

McDonalds? then yes

A home cooked meal made fresh with in season produce and good quality protein? No

With the influx of packaged meals on the shelves, surely we must ask how the food stays fresh without bacteria growing. The answer? Preservatives.

In this ‘healthy’ meal there are;

Sulphites (in this case 220 Sulphur Dioxide) preserve foods well, however our body doesn’t love them so much. Sulphur Dioxide is dangerous for asthmatics, a possible teratogen for the mum-to-be, and is linked to gastric irritation, liver toxicity, rashes, nausea and diarrhoea.

Vegetable Gum 407 – Carrageenan – is a suspected carcinogen with links to ulcerative colitis, can damage the immune system, and there are concerns about its excitotoxic effects (we want to look after our nerves right?)

Colours (122 Azorubine 129 Allura Red) – between them they are suspected carcinogens, mutagens, and have links with hyperactivity, skin rashes, oedema and are also banned in 6 other countries!

And that is only what is written on the packet. There are few sneaky loopholes that allow for misleading labelling!

Plus, that’s just one ‘healthy’ meal. What’s the cumulative affect over the day, week, month, and a lifetime?

Common ailments do not simply show up without a precursor. Our detoxification organs are under pressure like never before. Let’s take the liver for example. It already has a big job transforming external substances (alcohol, refined sugar, pesticides, herbicides, medication, trans fats, chemicals in cleaning products and personal care products, caffeine) and internal substances (metabolites, cholesterol, sex hormones, and others generated from poor digestion or food sensitivities), without adding to the load with supposed ‘healthy’ meals.

Surely we can’t still wonder why anxiety is getting worse (1 in 3 Australian women reported), cancers, or autoimmune diseases are on the rise?

The harsh and inconvenient reality is that there is no escape from cooking with real and in-season ingredients.

I don’t profess to do it perfectly all the time, and I doubt many do, but there is the matter of responsible choice that each and every one of us must adopt.


Pay less attention to the nutritional panel and full attention to the ingredients list (because it’s the ingredients that are actually going into the body and needing to be processed). Download your free list of Additives To Avoid HERE.

Take care and be well,

Erin Barnes