After more than 30 years of plant-based/vegan living, I’m now convinced that meat products are not our primary enemy regarding metabolic diseases. Meat products have been around seemingly since the beginning of time and we’ve survived them.
Yes, they are the genesis of zoonotic diseases like influenza, salmonellosis, rabies and a host of others. Yes, we know meat products have been found to accelerate the growth of cancer cells. However, I’m now of the mindset that we are overlooking the chemicals found in processed foods?
Once I was shopping for tofu. I usually don’t buy it or cook with it at home, but for my food prep class I use it for those who are converting to plant-based eating. Since it is mass produced and packaged, I was looking for the brand with the least amount of food additives/chemicals in it, if any at all.
Every brand had magnesium chloride and calcium sulfate, which is used as a coagulant. One brand had nigari, which contains lesser amounts of magnesium chloride and calcium sulfate.
My question is, if you’re a plant-based eater and you eat lots of processed foods containing tofu, will the calcium sulfate, magnesium chloride or nigari affect you negatively?
If you’re eating lots of tofu-based hot dogs, hamburgers, or other foods that remind you of your meat-eating days, I would say, yes, those coagulants will affect you negatively. But also, those highly processed foods have plenty of other food additives in them that could hurt you.
Those questions lead me back to why I’ve been promoting eating mostly fresh vegetation that can be found in the produce aisle of your local food market. Although that’s not the perfect solution, all of the processed food and additive questions are not a concern.
Obviously, we could be talking about trace amounts of certain additives, but we don’t have enough long-term research on how those additives are affecting us.
Play it safe and do most of your shopping from the produce aisle.