In the last 2 days, the petition for a healthier mac and cheese is gaining momentum. A pair of food bloggers and moms from North Carolina are attempting to wage a battle with Krafts foods over ingredients contained in Kraft's Mac and Cheese dinner. The concern raised by the pair relates to the use of Yellow Dye 5 and Yellow Dye 6 in the popular food. Their research resulted in finding that an alternative product is being offered to the UK population that excludes these ingredients. Their main argument is that the food dyes don't enhance the flavor, and it is potentially hazardous to the health of those who consume it. The concern is warranted and worth researching further.
Many of the foods consumed by many in North America have healthier alternatives in countries that have stricter regulations regarding ingredients known to cause health problems. One such ingredient to be wary of is Monosodium glutamate (MSG). MSG is a flavor enhancer that can be found in most processed foods consumed. MSG is known to cause obesity, as seen in the many researches involving mice. In a study published by the Cambridge Journal, various amounts of MSG were administered to mice, and obesity was observed. Additionally, in numerous studies, brain damage was observed in mice that consumed MSG. The same effects can be seen in the human population. The rate of obesity in the United States is steadily rising, and more occurrences of adolescence onset diabetes are being recorded.
MSG goes by so many names, that even if a consumer has decided to stay away from this ingredient, one would be have to carry a list along with them when shopping. Some of the other common names of MSG include Yeast Extract, flavoring, maltodextrin, soy protein, and whey protein. A comprehensive list of the other names of MSG can be found on the Truth In Labelling's website.
A look at Kraft Food's Organic Macaroni and Cheese ingredients list reveals the use of yeast extract. Organic written on the packaging of a food usually brings comfort to the purchaser who believes they are making a healthier decision. However, yeast extract is a known other name for MSG which has been linked to obesity and brain damage. The battle that these parents and food bloggers have started should be supported by all wanting healthier and more natural ingredients in the foods fed to their families. Until the change has been made, try making Macaroni and Cheese from scratch at home. The only real replacement that one has to do is, instead of using the packaged powdered cheese, choose to use real organic cheese. You will be pleasantly surprised by the burst of flavor it brings to your meal.
Go to Change.org to sign the petition. It is efforts like these that consumers can encourage food producers to not use controversial ingredients in their foods, especially when healthy alternatives are available. There are currently over one hundred and thirty thousand (130K) supporters with the number growing daily. Be amongst those who support this effort.