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Judicious Use of Food Preservatives—Avoid Abnormal Doses to Stay Healthy

Updated on May 28, 2020
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The author hails from South Indian village, situated in the South-West coastal region. He is into farm science and agriculture.

Farm Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

Fast food and packaged foods are saving our time and giving us options to choose among varieties of food items from diverse cuisines. Freshness is always appreciated by consumers with quality concerns. Taste of fresh food items diminishes, during its storage. Over a period of time, many things happen. Minute quantities of phytochemicals which are present in the fresh fruits and vegetables are lost by deterioration or evaporation. The food we purchase from the market is not fresh as compared to homegrown materials.

The latter part of this article is health-conscious people, who are willing to pay for safe and fresh vegetables. In the end, you can choose between the safe and easily available food. At present, the lifestyles have changed as compared to a couple of decades back. Almost all materials are available in the market. Now, items with “farm-fresh” and “natural” product labels are available in the supermarkets. There are no farms near supermarkets and what we get is post-harvest packaged, transported, food products with such labels.

Colourful sweets attract customers to the sweet stalls
Colourful sweets attract customers to the sweet stalls

Storage Options for Freshness

Naturally grown vegetables, such as cucumbers stay longer in the shelf without rotting for many months, whereas, the vegetables brought from the market, rot within a few days. This is also due to the high amount of fertilizers used for the production of various vegetables, hormonal sprays used for ripening fruits or for an appearance of some other, further, damages during transportation, etc. are the causes.

Jam prepared by adding sugar to fruit pulp without any preservatives remains in refrigerators as normal jam for a month with unaltered taste and consistency. Pickles of tiny tender mangoes seasoned in salt and dried red chillies and mustards remain for a year in airtight containers without refrigeration. In the above two cases, even without additional preservatives other than sugar or salt any other things are normally not required. However, in the market, we get jams with sodium benzoate and pickles with vinegar. It is the best to prepare your homemade items without additional preservatives for reducing the chemical load on your kidneys and the intestine.
To maintain freshness during storage, wax coating, fungicide dipping, white-oil smearing, etc. are adopted, in some markets, which are harmful to the consumers.

Processed vegetables burger
Processed vegetables burger

Chemical Residues

Pesticides such as chlorpyrifos, cypermethrin, quinalphos, etc. have been detected in storage grains and food materials. Herbicides such as glyphosate, pesticides such as carbofuran are detected in tuber crops.

Hidden Dangers

Ready to serve products come with artificial colours, artificial flavours, aroma and sweetness. Please remember that the products are made of good quality ingredients, perfect process, do not need colours, flavours and aroma. When there are deceiving elements such as artificial colour or smell, you should suspect the quality of the preparations.

Preservatives keep the cakes unspoiled for many days
Preservatives keep the cakes unspoiled for many days

Colouring for Attraction

Natural colours will not be too bright to lure you to them. They look naturally attractive. One thing the sellers have to keep in mind is that they can give attractive and colourfully printed covers for products and mention always that, the real product colour may vary slightly, though they are natural. Consumers will be happy to have less attractive but safe contents.

Scented Lures

The cakes, biscuits and confectionery smell of cocoa, coffee, oil, spices, etc. Some of the chemicals similar to addictive perfumes are used to attract consumers. Some of the aromatic artificial chemical enhancers are carcinogenic.

Colourful candies lure the children
Colourful candies lure the children
Food Additive code
other chemical agents
potassium sorbate
sodium benzoate
sulfur dioxide
acetic acid (vinegar)
sodium propionate
ascorbic acid (vitamin C)
butylated hydroxytoluene
citric acid
calcium orthophosphates
alginic acid
sodium bicarbonate (soda)
monosodium glutamate (MSG)

Diseases and Disorders

Stomach ache after food, food poisoning, indigestion, dysentery are common among irregular eaters, and is it not alarmingly high, despite a lot of awareness? There are further advanced ill-effects such as stomach ulcer, intestinal ulcer, kidney damage, liver sclerosis, cancer, haemorrhage, etc. and strokes and cardiac arrests are ultimate destructive happenings due to toxins in food materials.


Say, all the materials are original, but even then, there is no guarantee that it won’t harm the users. Each user is different. If certain products cause discomfort to you, better avoid it. There are always alternatives with good quality. Some of the preservatives induce acid refluxes in the intestine.

Among the food additives, E211, E260, E281, E282, E300, E321, E341, E621, etc. are some of the common names found on food packet labels.

Bread from the  bakery has at least 4 or more chemical ingredients
Bread from the bakery has at least 4 or more chemical ingredients
Delectable appearance of sweets
Delectable appearance of sweets

Healthy and Natural Choice

Some of the chemicals which are changing the forms of food materials also cause problems to the biological system of our body. Some cause respiratory problems, while others cause digestive system disorders. Some even have residual effects, which cause long term influence. Therefore, beware of the various food additive chemicals. Unless and otherwise not harmful in permitted doses, it is completely unsafe, and also most dangerous. It is always good to use food items to the optimum quantity and drink a good amount of pure water for eliminating impurities from the system. Eat simple and natural food to remain healthy.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2019 Halemane Muralikrishna


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