The beloved McDonald’s French fry; it tastes so good, but it’s so bad for you. The question is: are they actually food?
McDonald’s french fries are just made out of potatoes, maybe a little salt, and frying oil…right? Wrong. McDonald’s began a ‘transparency’ campaign recently to try to improve its
image among health conscious consumers, but this campaign has left people even more concerned about what’s in their food. Image credit: flickr/_BuBBy_
It’s been found that McDonald’s french fries actually contain 17 ingredients! According to Care2, they are:
-Potatoes (whew! I’m glad that was the first ingredient)
-Canola oil—Most canola oil is now genetically-modified.
-Hydrogenated soybean oil—Like canola oil, most soybean oil is now extracted from genetically-modified soybeans. Plus the hydrogenation process makes the oil more saturated than it would be in its natural form, and unhealthy.
-Safflower oil—Believed to be a healthier cooking oil, most safflower is unfortunately heated to high temperatures long before it is ever used for cooking, causing it to be chemically-altered from the heat, and a source of inflammation in the body when that is the case.
-”Natural flavor”—McDonald’s natural flavor is apparently obtained from a vegetable source, but the “natural” moniker means nothing since it can even potentially contain the nerve- and brain-toxin monosodium glutamate (MSG).
-Dextrose—a type of sugar.
-Sodium acid pyrophosphate—This ingredient is apparently used to maintain the color of the fries. On the chemical industry’s own safety data sheets it is listed as hazardous for ingestion, which is exactly what you’ll be doing if you eat those French fries.
-Citric acid—used as a preservative.
-Dimethylpolysiloxane—used as an anti-foaming agent, this industrial chemical is typically used in caulking and sealants and comes with a list of safety concerns.
-Vegetable oil for frying, which is a blend of 7 ingredients, including: canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil, hydrogenated soybean oil with tert-butylhydroquinone (TBHQ), citric acid, and dimethylpolysiloxane. We discussed most of these ingredients above. Corn oil, like its canola and soybean counterparts is now primarily made of genetically-modified corn.
TBHQ is a petroleum-based, butane-like (yes, that’s lighter fluid!) ingredient used as a preservative. It has been linked to asthma, skin conditions, hormone disruption, and in long-term animal studies to cancer and damage to DNA.
Not only are there 17 or more ingredients in this simple “food”, but the question remains about whether McD’s fries are actually broken down when we eat them. The video below shows that bacteria, fungus, and other micro-organism won’t even eat these fries. So it leaves us wondering whether our bodies actually break them down, or do they just fill our stomach?
n the video, you see that the fries from a regular restaurant had to be thrown out because they decomposed so much. We’d like to see if fries from other fast food restaurants are also so heavily laced with preservatives that bacteria and mold cannot eat them. We’re guessing that they are. After watching this video, will you still be eating McDonald’s french fries?