8 Unexpected Facts That Prove We Know Nothing About Our Favorite Foods

2. White Chocolate

Chocolate should really only contain cocoa butter, but often you’ll find it’s diluted with palm oil, coconut oil, and shea butter. Other ingredients include emulsifiers (most often, lecitin), aromatizers, and additives.

  • Advice: High-quality chocolate should be brittle and hard and should crack and crumble when broken.

1. Condensed Milk

Condensed milk is made by evaporating a liquid derived from milk (one can requires about 1.5 liters). It should only contain animal dairy fat. Producers often reduce the amount of milk it contains and use vegetable fats and thickeners to reach the required fat content and consistency.

  • Advice: If the can has a description written on it along the lines of a “dairy product containing sugar,” the chances are it’s been made in the way outlined above.

General advice for choosing food products

  • The general rule: the less ingredients a product contains, the healthier it is to eat. Try to remember what constitutes an unhealthy additive. Lists can be found here, here, and here.
  • Names that are similar but not identical to famous brands allow producers to avoid observing certain standards of food quality. In some places, companies are able to set their own standards, which may differ from the nationally enforced ones.
  • Check products for the presence of sugar, which might be described as “syrup,” “molasses,” “dextrose,” “sorbose,” and other names ending in “-ose.” It can also appear on packaging as E967 (koenlinite), E954 (saccharin) – basically, any additive beginning with “E9.”

Preview photo credit rvlsoft / Shutterstock.com


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