Avoiding Neurotoxins

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“A neurotoxin is a substance which inhibits the functions of neurons. Neurons are found throughout the brain and nervous system, and the function of these unique cells is critical for a variety of tasks, ranging from autonomic nervous system jobs like swallowing to higher-level brain function. Neurotoxins can work in a variety of ways, with the danger of exposure varying, depending on the neurotoxin involved and the dosage.”

Neurotoxins can be found in nearly every processed food and beverage on grocery store shelves. This includes processed organic foods! The consumption of processed foods in the American diet are skyrocketing and shows no sign of slowing down. In 2010, Americans spent 90% of their food budget on processed foods! 1 out of every 4 Americans are sensitive to neurotoxic food additives, but only 1 out of 250 Americans know that their symptoms are a reaction to these additives. The most common neurotoxic food additives in processed foods in the United States include:

  • aspartame
  • autolyzed anything
  • barley malt
  • beef base
  • beef flavoring
  • beef stock
  • bouillon
  • broth of any kind
  • calcium caseinate
  • carrageenan
  • caseinate
  • chicken base
  • chicken broth
  • chicken flavoring
  • chicken stock
  • disodium anything
  • dough conditioner
  • flavoring
  • gelatin
  • gelatinized anything
  • glutamate
  • guar gum
  • hydrolyzed anything
  • kombu extract
  • l-cysteine
  • malt anything
  • malted anything
  • milk solids
  • monosodium glutamate
  • natural flavor
  • nutrasweet
  • pork base
  • pork flavoring
  • protein concentrate
  • protein extract
  • seasoned salt
  • seasoning
  • smoke flavoring
  • sodium caseinate
  • solids of any kind
  • soup base
  • soy extract
  • soy protein anything
  • soy sauce
  • spice
  • stock
  • textured protein
  • textured vegetable protein
  • umami
  • vegetable gum
  • whey anything
  • yeast extract
How can we best protect ourselves from neurotoxic food additives? The best way is to eat a clean diet which minimizes the consumption of processed foods. If you must eat processed foods, it is important to become educated on what food additives to avoid. Overwhelmed by the idea of eliminating processed foods from your diet? You don’t need to eliminate all processed foods at once. Just make it a goal to gradually eliminate more processed foods every time you go grocery shopping. Many of my patients find the website “100 Days of Real Food” to be an excellent source for recipes and tips on how to ditch the processed foods and switch to clean eating! Dallas and Melissa Hartwig, authors of “It Starts with Food” offer several free must-read resources. You can view them all HERE!
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Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. http://www.eatingdisorderpro.com’

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