Food & Nutrition

50 Secrets Food Manufacturers Don’t Tell You That Could Change the Way You Eat

Eye-opening insights from company executives, marketers, and food scientists into how your food is made and what you can do to eat better.

First, some reassuring news

Dried fruits and nuts for sale at Gwangjang Market in Seoul, South Korea.Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

“When we recently examined big food companies over a five-year period, we found that 99 percent of their growth was coming from lower-calorie products. That was, quite frankly, a stunning surprise. 
So they’re not just sitting around on their hands. They are moving in the right direction.” Former food-industry executive 
Hank Cardello, director of the Obesity Solutions Initiative at the Hudson Institute (a nonprofit think tank) and author of Stuffed   Here’s some more good news: these foods are even better for you than you thought.

Natural progression

multi color of textile dye Mrs_ya/Shutterstock

“Consumers clearly want more natural ingredients and transparency about what they’re eating, and smart manufacturers are getting that and responding. Nestlé has moved to get rid of artificial colors and flavors in its chocolate candy. Kraft is removing 
artificial dyes from some types of macaroni and cheese. And some fast-food chains are removing antibiotics from their chicken.” Hank Cardello

Keep it fresh

Background of multiple sealed food cans or tins viewed from overhead in an assortment of sizes filling the frame in a food and nutrition conceptOzgur Coskun/Shutterstock

“The concept of ‘the dose makes the poison’ is very important in the realm of food, especially when it comes to natural flavors and artificial colors. All food ingredients and nutrients—even those we need to survive—have a threshold for safety. When caramel color was approved, 
nobody anticipated how much of it would be used in the food and beverage 
industry. It’s in a lot of foods you don’t expect: certain soups, pilaf, and hamburger, for example. So if everything you eat is from a box, a can, or a bag, then you may get too much and have reason for concern. But if you eat a variety of foods, you don’t have to worry.” Kantha Shelke, PhD, a food scientist 
who specializes in ingredients at Corvus Blue, a Chicago-based research firm

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