Preservatives can help extend a food’s shelf life, slow oxidation, prevent the growth of bacteria, and add texture, flavor, and smell. There are both natural and man-made preservatives. Although man-made preservatives have been criticized for affecting nutrient absorption and gut health, they help prevent food from growing bacteria.
Furthermore, there are other factors in the discussion of gut health, such as food preparation, which foods are consumed simultaneously, and environmental stressors. More research needs to be conducted on a variety of foods and preservatives to fully understand the impact they can have on absorption. Understanding how the body converts food into fat can offer some insight into whether preservatives trigger the body’s fat-storing mode.
The FDA and the Michigan State University Center for Research on Food Safety suggest that man-made preservatives help protect the body from microbes that can cause foodborne illnesses. Perhaps, it is safer to consume food with preservatives than eating food infected with bacteria and fungi.
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