In today’s fast paced world, we often choose quick foods with great tastes for our meals. However, did you know that there are many additives that are used to enhance the flavors and textures of such products? For example, do you know what is added to ice cream to make it so creamy or what is included in certain white breads to add fiber? Often times these foods include the ingredient cellulose.
Cellulose, in its natural form, is the rough part of plant foods such as vegetables and fruits. The second type of cellulose is a synthetic (manmade) version that is added to foods like ice creams, cheeses, breads, sauces, etc. Cellulose improves the texture of foods creating a creamy consistency, acts as a stabilizer providing structure to baked goods, creates gels for jellies, and binds water in products.
Cellulose is a complex starch and is being used as an additive because it adds additional fiber to your diet. Most people do not get the recommended 28 – 38 grams of fiber daily so this added fiber can be a benefit.
Cellulose is one of the most abundant compounds on earth. Its purest source is cotton and the woody parts of trees. Remember from one of my previous blogs, cotton is on the top of the list for genetically engineered foods. Check out this Wall Street Journal article to take a closer look at this popular food additive and the many roles it plays in the packaged foods we eat.
All in all, when selecting your foods, I suggest looking for whole foods as often as possible. Consume the cellulose that occurs naturally in products such as organic fruits, vegetables and grains. For foods like ice cream, look for products with minimal ingredients and real fats such as cream and egg yolks instead of genetically modified ingredients. Pure, whole foods lead to a healthier body and an overall healthier life!
What other food products have you seen that contain cellulose or what other food additives would you like to learn more about? Let me know your thoughts and questions by commenting below.