Monday, January 4, 2010
This is a quote I found in the book im reading in Nourishing Traditions. Im sure you will find it very interesting and will never go near margarine again.
Back in 1967 or so.. a food technologist told me how he thought the term "plastic food" must have originated, must have observed that when looked at through a microscope, a hydrogenated fat molecule looks very much like a plastic molecule.... "Lipid chemists", he explained, "actually talk about plasticizing oils".... I decided to discontinue selling margarine- as well as products containing vegetable shortening, margarine's cousin- and to perform a little experiment.
It was quiet nontechnical... I put a cube of margarine, the kind I had been selling, on a saucer on the window sill in the back room of my store. I reasoned that if I made it readily available and if it was real food, insects and microorganisms would invite themselves to the feast. Flies and ants and mold would be all over it just as if it were butter..... That cube of margarine became infamous. I left it sitting on the window sill for about two years. Nobody ever saw an insect of any description go near it. Not one speak of mold ever grew on it. All that ever happened was that it kind of half-puddled down from the heat of the sun beating through the windowpane, and it got dusty- very dusty, a cube of margarine doesn't clean up very well either. Finally, it got to looking so revolting that I decided to terminate the experiment. For me, the experiment had not been foreshortened; I had reached the conclusion long ago that margarine basically is not food, whether or not it's like plastic.
Fred Rohe, PPNF Health Journal
Here is a few more facts on margarine
Bad things in margarine, shortening and spreads
  • Trans fats: These unnatural fats in margarine, shortenings and spreads are formed during the process of partial hydrogenation, which turns a liquid vegetable oil into a solid fat. Trans fats contributes to heart disease, cancer, bone problems, hormonal imbalances and skin diseases; infertility; difficulties in pregnancy and problems with lactation; and low birth weight, growth problems and learning disabilities. Recently a US government panel of scientists determined that man-made trans fats are unsafe at any level. (Small amounts of natural trans fats occur in butter and other animal fats but these are not harmful.)
  • Free radicals: Free radicals and other toxic breakdown products are the result of high temperature industrial processing of vegetable oils. They contribute to numerous health problems, including cancer and heart disease.
  • Synthetic vitamins: Synthetic vitamin A and other vitamins are added to margarine and spreads. These often have an opposite (and detrimental) effect compared to the natural vitamins in butter.
  • Emulsifiers and Preservatives: Numerous additives of questionable safety are added to margarines and spreads. Most vegetable shortening is stabilized with preservatives like BHT.
  • Hexane and other solvents: Used in the extraction process, these industrial chemicals are highly carcinogenic.
  • Bleach: The natural colour of partially hydrogenated vegetable oil is grey so manufactures bleach it to make it white. Yellow colouring is then added to margarine and spreads.
  • Artifical flavours: These help to mask the terrible taste and odor of partially hydrogenated oils, and provide a fake butter taste.
  • Mono and Di Glycerides: These contain trans fats that manufactures do not have to list on the label. They are used in high amounts in so called "low-trans" spreads.
  • Soy protein isolate: This highly processed powder is added to "low-trans" spreads to give them body. It can contribute to thyroid dysfunction, digestive disorders and many other health problems.
  • Sterols: Often added to spreads to give them cholesterol lowering qualities, these estrogen compounds can cause endocrine problems; in animals these sterols contribute to sexual inversion.


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Whangarei, Northland, New Zealand
Hi.. Im Katie. I am 20 years old. I am a student nurse. I love learning about healthy eating and living healthy lifestyles. There are so many lies and myths about the food we eat today and I am determined to spread the word. If you have any questions don't be shy to ask. Email me at P.S I am not a doctor, I do not diagnose conditions. I am just hear to educate myself and others. Any symptoms I address please see your doctor.
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