Is This Common Food Preservative Causing Your Weight Gain?
The best diet advice is often the most basic. Most nutritionists will tell you to cut out the added sugar, stick to lean proteins, and spend some time exercising each week for healthier results.
However, when it comes to what we’re eating, it’s not always easy to distinguish a “healthy” food from an unhealthy one.
Take the common food additive propionate.
Found in common pantry staples like bread, butter, and cheese… this preservative is actually a natural fatty acid that forms in your gut. It helps promote balance and keeps your metabolism going strong.
Used as a food preservative to stave off mold growth in bread and cheese, however, it can have a much more sinister effect on the body. Before you reach for that croissant on your next cheat day, here are a few things you should know about that tricky double-agent propionate.
What Is Propionate?
Our gut is home to many healthy strains of bacteria, as well as fatty acids that help our metabolic system easily convert food into healthy, useable energy. Propionate is one of these short-chain fatty acids that gets converted to glucose to help us digest our food better.TRENDING: Science Reveals Easy, No-Workout Ways to Lose Weight… While You Snooze!
There’s just one problem: studies dating as far back as 1912 show that propionate isn’t like other fatty acids.
Instead of converting into a helpful, energy-boosting amount of glucose proportionate to the dosage… propionate converts to twenty times over the normal amount of glucose production compared to other, more helpful fatty acids.
If you’re already aware of what happens when the body overproduces glucose, you’re already aware of the problem.
Because metabolism exists to convert food into energy, too much glucose means that, without a lot of exercise, the body isn’t going to be able to burn off the calories easily… especially if what’s going in creates a frenzy of glucose production.
When given to mice during a study, propionate was shown to inhibit insulin production as well as flood the system with high levels of glucose. If you’re someone who’s trying to lose weight, this isn’t good news for you, especially if your go-to snack or cheat day meal of choice is pizza.
Why Does Propionate Work This Way?
There’s a reason why common bread additives like Azodicarbonamide, the chemical found in yoga mats, are banned in Europe… and it doesn’t just have to do with weight gain.TRENDING: This Massive “Mistake” Melted 48lbs Off Her Body (Click Here to See How)…
These preservatives can help stave off mold while helping the baking process along… creating high-rising, fluffy loaves of bread that look and taste delicious.
While preservatives and flavor enhancers like propionate might be naturally produced in our bodies… that doesn’t mean that we can’t be exposed to too much of them.
A few studies have linked too much propionate to migraine headaches in adults and behavioral changes in children.
Even worse news: if you already have a stomach condition like gastritis, propionate could exacerbate your symptoms and worsen your condition.
How Can You Avoid Propionate?
Fortunately, there is a silver lining to all of this.
If you’re already dieting, you’ve probably been told to stay away from simple carbs like bread and pastries. While it’s great to use whole grains to bulk up your diet, staying away from store-bought breads or fast food pizza and pastry chains can only help you out if you’re trying to stay healthy and keep extra weight off.BRAND NEW: These Delicious Desserts Can Help You Burn Fat & Lose Weight
This doesn’t mean, of course, that you have to cut out carbs entirely. All you have to do is get a bit smarter about reading that ingredient label.
Be wary of store-bought breads and cheeses that list “cultured whey” or “cultured wheat” as a key ingredient. This more often than not refers to propionate or another harmful additive.
If you love cheese and bread and don’t want to give them up, try springing for locally made products that are less likely to use (or need) preservatives.
Remember, mold isn’t the worst thing in the world that can happen. Cheese is a natural form of mold, so buying processed cheese that helps the product stay fresh for longer won’t necessarily mean you’re getting a better or even tastier product. All it means is that it will be able to keep longer in the fridge.
What Other Food Preservatives Should You Avoid?
Preservatives and additives are in so many places where they shouldn’t be, from bread to baby food to processed meats and cheeses.
The best way to make sure your body isn’t ingesting anything toxic or harmful is to stay far away from anything that’s heavily or ultra-processed. That doesn’t just mean Kraft singles.SPECIAL: New Research Reveals How to Get Your Brain to Tell Your Body to Burn More Fat
Soy products, for instance, are processed foods, as well as non-dairy milks and cheeses like almond milk, oat milk, and vegan cheeses.
If you love bread and you want to make sure you’re not ingesting a dose of propionate with every slice… try visiting your local bakery for a fresh, additive-free loaf.
3 Cheeses You Can Get Without Propionate… That Are Actually Good for You
So, as a quick review…
Avoiding propionate and other dangerous food additives means avoiding most store-bought, processed breads, baked goods, and cheeses.
Of course, like I mentioned, the keyword there is “processed.”
If you work on avoiding breads and cheeses that come from the big food companies… and if you get good at reading food labels… you SHOULD be okay.
And while it obviously isn’t a fix-all, avoiding preservatives like propionate can help you lose more weight faster.
But did you know that some cheeses are actually good for you?!
If you get the right cheeses, they’re minimally processed and propionate-free…
And they can actually help your body burn off fat!
So next time, instead of grabbing the ultra-processed insta-cheese or factory-farmed stuff…
Sub in one of these 3 delicious cheeses to watch the pounds melt off: