JollyGut Blog

Dairy-free + Additives = Love

For some of us, as a matter of principle or for health reasons, yogurt has to be dairy-free. Those who consider it as a healthy alternative to regular yogurts should think twice because 92% of dairy-free yogurts are made with additives, compared to only 60% of dairy ones. Also, you're paying about 10% more for these hybrid products. Well, the chemicals they add really aren't that cheap.

But what's the big deal about food additives? If they are sold in supermarkets, they should be safe, right? 

Mind the food additives

Food additives are chemicals inside the food that serve a particular function, such as to thicken, enhance flavour or preserve. To replicate the luscious, creamy texture of regular yogurt, thickening agents like guar gum or carrageenan are added. To make up for the flavour and richness, sweeteners, artificial colours and flavours are added. This is how yogurt, the innocent, healthy breakfast food, becomes a chemical concoction.

Are they really that bad for me?

In small quantities, they are not harmful. Regulatory bodies limit the number of additives in each product, but who monitors how many and how much of each product you consume? The problem lies in the accumulating effect of additives when they reach unsafe levels. No alarm bell is going to sound when you've overshot the daily recommended intake. 

Those are just some possible side effects of consuming food additives: 
  1. A trigger for breathing problems like asthma and bronchitis
  2. Hyperactive behaviour in children
  3. Associations with pancreatic and colon cancer
  4. Disruption of gut microbiota, which can lead to inflammatory diseases of the gut
  5. Allergic reactions including diarrhoea and hives

The bottom line is: the daily intake of additives has to be carefully monitored

They are found in almost every item in the grocery store, minus your fresh produce, and are therefore hard to avoid. This makes accumulating additives all too easy. There are numerous swaps that can be made to reduce your daily intake. But if you don't have the time or headspace to sieve through dozens of brands and ingredient lists, we have a solution. Smachdoes the compiling, comparing and computing for you, presenting you with a list of products that will meet your exact dietary needs.