What are Processed Foods?

Processed foods are foods that have been compromised by the addition of hormones, additives, preservatives, unnatural genetic material or other chemical or heat treatments that alter or destroy the natural healthy enzymes, fatty acids, vitamins and minerals. The main goal of food processing is to lengthen the shelf life of foods so that larger amounts can be sold over time. Most are very high in refined carbohydrates.

In contrast, whole, real foods are simple and basic. Meat and vegetables need no processing - they are ready to eat off the vine or off the fire; whole foods age as you and I do, and they must be eaten when fresh.

Examples of Processed Foods

Here’s a short list of some common high carbohydrate and other unhealthy processed foods (most have very long shelf lives):

  • White wheat flour, especially bleached white flour.
  • Refined sugars (crystalline fructose, maltodextrin, dextrose, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, sucrose, maple syrup, date sugar, cane sugar, brown rice syrup, corn sugar, beet sugar, agave syrup, etc..).
  • Margarine and other hydrogenated vegetable fats.
  • Refined vegetable oils such as canola, soybean, safflower and sunflower oil.
  • Boxed foods such as meal mixes, cereal and pasta.
  • Soft drinks and sugary "fruit" drinks, which are loaded with white sugar, high fructose corn syrup, artificial colors, flavors and other food additives.
  • Fast food, which is a source of trans fats.
  • Cheese food, packaged cakes and cookies, chips, snack food crackers and other junk food.
  • Frozen foods such as tv dinner meals, fish sticks, pizza rolls and similar foods.
  • Soy products such as soy milk, soy cheese, soy protein isolate, and other processed soy foods. Natural soybeans taste horrible, so in order to make soy products edible, soy manufacturers have to add large amounts of sugar, MSG and other flavorings and spices.
  • Powdered milk and eggs: Commercial milk powders contain oxysterols (oxidized cholesterol) in high amounts. The oxysterol free radicals have been suspected of being initiators of atherosclerotic plaques. Powdered eggs contain even more oxysterols.

These processed junk foods usually have high levels of food additives. Some are harmless, but there are many that have unwelcome health effects. Food additives are substances that food manufacturers add to a wide range of foods to preserve the flavor or improve the taste and appearance of processed foods. They are common to foods which require long shelf lives, and are used widely in "diet" foods which need the flavor boost. Some additives come from natural sources, but some are highly process substances derived from unhealthy sources such as coal tar and peroxide.

And here's a sobering factoid for you: it is estimated that nearly 75% of the processed junk foods found in your local grocery store contain corn, soybean or canola ingredients which have been engineered from genetically modified organisms (GMOs). This includes bakery products, salad dressings, corn products, baby food, infant formula and other products. Why is this scary? Consider how animals react to GMOs.

  • In their book Genetically Engineered Food, authors Ronnie Cummins and Ben Lilliston report that genetically engineered crops kill Monarch butterflies, other beneficial insects, and cause the development of new strains of virulent plant viruses and "superpests".
  • Ranchers and dairy farm managers have reported that if given a choice, cattle will break down fences to leave a field of genetically engineered corn in favor of naturally raised corn.

All of my books are available in electronic PDF, and now in paperback on Amazon!

Buy paperback on Amazon

Buy the e-Book via Paypal

Buy paperback on Amazon

Buy the e-Book via Paypal

Buy paperback on Amazon

Buy the e-Book via PayPal

Done with Processed Foods, back to Ketogenic Diet Plan.