McDonald’s French fries is a food that the majority of Americans have eaten at least once in their lives. For many, it is regular fare in their diets.
On the surface, they may seem like a simple food: potatoes, oil and salt. Right?
Maybe not. The fast food giant published ingredient lists and processing techniques last year in a campaign to show transparency and to improve its image among increasingly health-savvy consumers.
So what is actually in those French fries?
1. Potatoes – thankfully, the first ingredient.
2. Canola oil – which may or may not be genetically modified.
3. Hydrogenated soybean oil with TBHQ – hydrogenation makes oils more saturated and thus bad for your heart health. TBHQ, or tert-Butylhydroquinone is a butane-like petroleum-based ingredient used as a preservative. This chemical has been linked to the following things: cancer, asthma, skin conditions, hormone disruption and DNA damage.
4. Soybean oil – apparently they have two versions of soybean oil in their ingredient list.
5. Natural beef flavor – with a side note that it contains hydrolyzed wheat and hydrolyzed milk as starting ingredients, which is code for the neurotoxin Monosodium Glutamate (MSG).
6. Dextrose – sugar.
7. Sodium acid pyrophosphate – to maintain the color of the fries, and listed as hazardous for ingestion in the chemical industry’s safety data sheets.
8. Citric acid – a commonly used preservative.
9. Dimethylpolysiloxane – an anti-foaming agent commonly used as an industry chemical in caulking and sealants.
That is 10 ingredients and chemicals in what should be the simplest of foods. By the way, many of these ingredients and additives are also used in their other menu items.
Now let me ask you a question: Are you still lovin’ it?