As the Center for Public Integrity points out, industries can basically decide for themselves what is safe for you to eat. Of the 10,000 food additives on the market, 95 to 99 percent have never been tested for safety when consumed in isolation, let alone been tested for synergistic toxicity that can occur when you combine several of them together. People have gotten savvier about this in recent years, and many are now trying to avoid artificial flavors and colors. Yet the food industry is still tricking most of us.

If you read food labels, you’ve likely seen the inclusion of “natural flavors.” If this has led you to believe they were different from and healthier than artificial flavors, you’ve been soundly deceived. Originally, “natural flavors” referred to things like spices and spice extracts — flavors obtained through natural means. This changed when consumers began rejecting foods containing “artificial flavors.” Schatzker explains.

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