Hide and Seek: The Curious Case of Sludge in Your Food
Let's play a game. We'll present you with two groups of things, Group A and Group B. We'll then ask a few simple questions and send you on your way with a free giveaway.
Group A: Soy Lecithin, Maltitol Syrup, Maltodextrin, Sucralose, Xanthan Gum.
Group B: Clif Bars, PowerBars, Think Thin bars, Quest Bars.
Have you ever purchased one of the products from Group B? If yes, proceed to question #2. If no, continue playing if you wish, otherwise have a great day.
Do you know what the things in Group A are?
Do you know what the connection between the two groups is?
Ok, time for answers.
You tell us.
They are all common additives in processed foods, either used as emulsifiers or artificial sweeteners.
All the products in Group B contain at least one of the additives from Group A.
Now we're not food scientists or certified nutritionists, but have you ever purchased a bag of soy lecithin to snack on? Have you ever made a fresh batch of maltodextrin to take on a hike?
We're certainly being a little facetious here, but the point is there's an easy litmus test we can all use when it comes to the food we eat: would you eat each individual component on its own?
We use the answer to this question when formulating all of our products. Admittedly we don't drink peppermint or vanilla extracts by themselves but at least we know what those are. The same can't be said about soy lecithin, which is found in SO many nutrition bars. Check out the origin story, courtesy of livestrong.org.
To solve the problem of disposing of the gummy waste residual generated from the soy oil refining process, German companies patented a process of vacuum drying the sludge to make soybean lecithin. Although lecithin originally had many uses, today soy lecithin is used as an emulsifier in foods and infant formulas.
Dispose of the gummy waste residual? Sludge? "Many uses?" Does your food have many uses or is it just food, used for energy and nourishment by your body?
No matter which nutrition bar brand is your go-to snack, contact them today and ask them to stop putting sketchy ingredients in their products and hiding the fact in small print on their wrappers. And if you're curious what life outside the wrapper is all about, shoot us a note here saying you read this post and we'll hook you up with a free sampler.