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Top 10 Dealbreakers in the Store

By Claire Bacon, ACN, CNC

Do you often find yourself reaching for the same products at the grocery store? Week after week? We all have our go-to food items and staples. But you know what, we need to carefully check the labels! Sometimes items are marketed on the front label as “healthy” and “natural.” But, the back label may show ingredients that are not optimal for our health. In order to pick out healthy items, you need to have an eye out for what ingredients to look for and avoid. No one wants to spend all day reading labels at the store. But we shouldn’t have to compromise our health just for convenience. That’s why as soon as I see one bad ingredient, I put it down. I just move on! Certain ingredients are so unhealthy, I call them Dealbreakers!

A Quick Look at the FDA

The FDA’s mission is to “protect the public health by assuring the safety, efficacy and security of…our nation’s food supply.”  Pretty simple, right?  It sounds like they are working to protect us. However, this is not the case. Not only does the FDA allow many questionable ingredients in our food, they are sometimes not even involved when a “new” additive is introduced into our food. New additives are often approved by the manufacturer themselves, not by the FDA.  In many cases, they will just let the manufacturer perform safety testing.

If the manufacturer’s “expert” team decides the additive is not harmful, the manufacturer may deem it as “GRAS”. This means “Generally Recognized as Safe”. They may voluntarily send their GRAS determination to the FDA.  Does this seem strange to you? Yes, it’s a streamlined approach, but it’s severely lacking in third party oversight.  Long story short, manufacturers can essentially put whatever they want into our food.

Back in 1958, Congress gave the FDA authority over food additives.  At that time, there were about 800 additives. Today, the number of additives is close to 10,000! And potentially, there may be over 1000 of these additives for which public safety data doesn’t even exist.

Bottom line:  You can’t put your confidence in the FDA when it comes to food additives. When we’re shopping, we need to have an eye out for harmful ingredients.  We can’t trust that if it’s for sale, it’s safe.  Nope!  It is truly a “buyer beware” world out there.

Top 10 Dealbreakers

Read your labels! Find one of these? Just put it down!

DealbreakersDealbreakers are Bad for your health because:Dealbreakers are Banned in:Dealbreakers are Found here in:
1. Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT) or Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA)Flavor enhancers and preservatives that are probable human carcinogens, may be linked to blood clotting, or endocrine disruptionUK, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, most of EUPost Honey Maid S’mores, Frosted Flakes, Honey Bunches of Oats, Rice Krispies, and other breakfast cereals, also Stove Top Stuffing, some potato chips, Hungry Jack mashed potatoes, Stove Top Stuffing, some chewing gum, Johnsonville Breakfast Sausage, Campbell’s Chunky Minestrone Sausage Soup, Pepperoni Bagel Bites, Freschetta Pepperoni Pizza, Hormel Pepperoni
2. Artificial colors like Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Blue 2, and Red 40Allergic reactions and ADHD hyperactivity in children, possible carcinogen, inhibits nerve cell developmentNorway, Finland, Sweden, Austria, France, and EUSkittles, Twizzlers, M&Ms, Gatorade, Pop Tarts, Froot Loops, Maraschino cherries, Grenadine, cherry pie filling, boxed Mac n Cheese, Doritos, Goldfish
3. rBGH or rBST Milk (you want to see a statement that rBST is NOT used)Synthetic growth hormone has increased cancer risks, causes mastitis in cows and increased pus in milkEU, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, and CanadaConventional milk and ice cream products, pasteurized process cheese product
4. Genetically Modified Ingredients (GMOs)Linked to organ damage, tumors, birth defectsEU, RussiaPop Tarts, Kashi cereal and granola, Conventional corn, soy, and papaya, Goldfish crackers, Doritos
5. Sucralose, Splenda, Aspartame, Saccharin, and Acesulfame KArtificial sweeteners are linked to leukemia and other blood cancers, disrupting gut bacteria, inducing food cravingsEUGatorade Zero, Powerade Zero, Kool-Aid Zero Sugar, Celsius drinks, Fiber One cereal, Arizona Zero Calorie Green Tea, Breyer’s Carb Smart Bars, Mission Carb Balance Tortillas, Yoplait Light Yogurt

Even More!

DealbreakersDealbreakers are Bad for your health because:Dealbreakers are Banned in:Dealbreakers are Found here in:
6. CarrageenanA thickener linked to gastric distress and colon cancer, cardiovascular inflammationEUConventional milk substitutes, chocolate milk, and ice cream products, lots of pet food
7. Hydrogenated or Partially hydrogenated soybean and cottonseed oilsContain trans fats – linked to heart disease and strokesAustria, Hungary, Switzerland, Iceland, and DenmarkCoffee Mate, Margarine, Jiffy and Skippy peanut butter
8. MSG, aka hydrolyzed yeast extractA flavor enhancer to make the food taste irresistible, linked to headaches, obesityNowhereJiffy corn muffins, Goldfish crackers, Doritos, Cheetos
9. High Fructose Corn SyrupCauses insulin resistance, diabetes, and obesityIndia, Ireland, Sweden, Austria, Uruguay, LithuaniaConventional Ketchup, Maple syrup, Candy
10. Apeel/Edipeel coating (new in 2023).  Product was exempt from premarket approval based on previous studies (not on the final product)
Backed by Globalist investors
Coating does not wash off.
May increase triglycerides, and increase risk for arteriosclerosis, heart disease, heart attack, stroke, pancreatitis.  Similar processing characteristics as trans fats. Contains Ethyl acetate and Heptane residues, which can affect the central nervous system, can cause peripheral neuropathy.NowhereAvocados, asparagus, citrus fruit, apples, limes – even organic!!

Dealbreakers without a Label

There are certain ingredients you can find on a label, which should immediately tell you to put the item down.  Other ingredients are trickier.  For instance, MSG has many different names that sound harmless, but it’s just hiding the truth.  You have to learn these other names that really mean “hidden MSG”.  In addition, you’ll have to learn where are the problem ingredients. Ask the managers at your favorite restaurants and fast-food places.  You never see a label on the products that come from there.  But do a little searching, and what you find may surprise you!

Ingredients of Fast Food French Fries

Chick Fil A

Potatoes, canola oil, high oleic canola oil with dimethylpolysiloxane added as an anti-foaming agent, vegetable oil (canola, palm, soy), salt, disodium dihydrogen pyrophosphate (to maintain natural color), dextrose


Potatoes, Vegetable Oil (canola Oil, Corn Oil, Soybean Oil, Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Natural Beef Flavor [wheat And Milk Derivatives]*), Dextrose, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate (maintain Color), Salt. *natural Beef Flavor Contains Hydrolyzed Wheat And Hydrolyzed Milk As Starting Ingredients.

Burger King

Potatoes, Soybean Oil or Canola and Palm Oil, Modified Potato Starch, Rice Flour, Potato Dextrin, Salt, Leavening (Disodium Dihydrogen Pyrophosphate, Sodium Bicarbonate), Dextrose, Xanthan Gum, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate added to preserve natural color.


Potatoes, Vegetable Oil (Soybean, Canola, and/or Cottonseed Oils), Modified Food Starch (Potato, Corn, Tapioca), Rice Flour, Dextrin, Salt, Leavening (Disodium Dihydrogen Pyrophosphate, Sodium Bicarbonate, Monocalcium Phosphate), Dextrose, Xanthan Gum, Disodium Dihydrogen Pyrophosphate (To Promote Color Retention).

Compare that to the fries at Five Guys and In-N-Out

  • potatoes,
  • salt, and
  • refined peanut oil.

Not perfect, but much better in comparison!

So, What Do We Do?

Luckily for us, we don’t need to wait for the FDA to ban these dealbreakers. We can simply STOP buying products with them! Start now!

When you get a moment, check the labels in your pantry. If you see these ingredients listed, look for a safer alternative (or make a homemade version instead).

In our opinion, the best way to ensure your products are GMO and glyphosate-free is to look for organic products. These will have the USDA Organic and the Non-GMO verified labels.  Even so, you’ll want to take precautions. You should work on promoting your own liver function and detoxification.  Unfortunately, glyphosate use is so rampant, that some organic foods may contain small amounts of glyphosate residues.

If we stop buying it, they will stop making it!

References About the Dealbreakers:

“Apeel” Fruit and Vegetable Protective Coating Is Not So Appealing When You Break It Down (

Glyphosate in Food: Complete List of Products and Brands Filled with Dangerous Weed-Killer – Live Love Fruit

Glyphosate Residue Free – The Detox Project

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