Before you read this, put down that ketchup, soft drink, salad dressing, yogurt, cookie, or other processed food.
Well, according to the journal Environmental Health, there was a surprisingly good chance that there was mercury in whatever processed food you were holding.
In a study it published recently, scientists tested products containing high-fructose corn syrup taken straight from supermarket shelves, and found that 31 percent of them contained traces of the toxic element.
Even worse, the FDA apparently did a similar test in 2005, and found mercury in 45 percent of the samples. And then did nothing about it.
As you're no doubt aware, we're talking about a sweetener that is now in nearly every processed food you can imagine. We're talking names like Quaker, Hunt's, Hershey's, Smucker's, Kraft, Nutri-Grain and Yoplait, just to start with.
And, just on the off-chance you're a diehard fan of HFCS, let's also dredge up another recent study that linked the sweetener to obesity. A University of Florida study found that rats on a HFCS diet developed a resistance to the hormone that regulates appetite, meaning that they didn't control their eating as much and quickly grew into fat little furballs.
True, there's a lot of wiggle room and much debate about how relevant the study is to human beings who don't chug high-fructose corn syrup (and only high-fructose corn syrup) all day, but the messages coming in are clear:
You can never go wrong by making your ketchup yourself.
By Michael Y. Park
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