We all know that processed or packaged foods are not good for your health. However, you will be surprised to know how much known toxic foods, additives and preservatives that are banned in European Union and many advanced countries around the world.

1. Olestra or Olean:

Olestra is used in low fat products that contain no calories, no cholesterol and no fat and is also used as cooking oil for frying. Olestra first created by Proctor and Gamble was first approved by FDA as a food additive and a replacement for unhealthy oils. However, later on it became clear that besides removing fat from foods, olestra blocks the body’s ability to absorb essential minerals and vitamins. Olestra used in fat free fried foods like fries or potato chips has been linked to gastrointestinal problems, bowel syndrome, cramps and weight gain. While countries like UK and Canada have banned olestra, FDA has kept this toxic oil as a legal food additive and oil for cooking.

2. Brominated vegetable Oil (BVO)

Brominated vegetable oil is used in sport drink and sodas in order to keep flavor oils in soft drinks in suspension and give drinks a great homogenized color. BVO is so poisonous that it is banned in 100 countries and just two ounces of a 2% solution of BVO can severely poison a child. Brominated vegetable oil is driven from corn or soy and is bonded with bromine. When the body absorbs bromine, it replaces iodine and causes iodine deficiency. Brominated vegetable oil can increase the risk of breast cancer, prostate cancer, ovary cancer, thyroid problems and infertility.

3. Potassium Bromate

Potassium Bromate is banned in many countries including European Union, Brazil, Canada and even China. Potassium Bromate is used as a powerful oxidizing agent in baking since it bleaches and improves the elasticity of dough. Potassium Bromate is commonly used in commercial baking to make baking process faster and cheaper and end product becomes much more soft, unnaturally white and fluffy. Potassium bromated is linked to kidney problems, neurological disorder and cancer.


Butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) are commonly used as frying oils for cooling and re-heating in many fast-food restaurants.  Both BHA/BHT are also used as preservative in cereals, processed meat, candies and even gums. BHA/BHT is banned in European countries and Japan with exception of US. BHA/BHT doesn’t do a lot of damage except insomnia, increased appetite, loss of energy, liver and kidney damage, fetal abnormalities, mental and physical retardation, cancer and baldness.

5. Azodicarbonamide

Azodicarbonamide considered as GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) by FDA is commonly used as bleaching agent in baking white bread, cakes and pastries. Azodicarbonamide is the reason why the bread you bought is still soft and fresh after few days. Azodicarbonamide also improves the flour’s strength and elasticity.

6. Artificial food coloring and synthetic food dyes

Artificial food coloring and dyes are banned in many countries including Norway, France, Austria, UK and Finland. However, partially anything that comes inside a package in America ranging from candies, cheese, cereals to sport dinks or cakes have artificial dyes in them. Artificial dyes are made from chemicals that are driven from petroleum and are linked to neurological problems, brain cancer, ADD, ADHD and hyperactivity in children.