We think of our home as our sanctuary, somewhere safe to relax and hide from the outside world, but just how safe are some of our favourite things which we use on a regular basis?
For a while I have been including a “Domestic Demon” article in my newsletter so thought that I would post these to my blog.
No need to panic. Just take a deep breath and read on. My Domestic Demons are, on the whole, things which may be lurking in your cupboards so it should be easy to change to a product which is safer and healthier for you and your family.
So here goes. Let’s take a look at what might be accompanying your favourite baked beans!!
DOMESTIC DEMON – the hidden dangers of tinned food!
What could possibly be wrong with good old tinned baked beans / fish / tomatoes etc?
The process of preserving foods in cans harks back to the late 18th century, thanks to Napoleon, who offered a prize to anyone who could suggest a way of preserving food for his men during the Napoleonic Wars. At the time, there were more casualties from malnutrition, starvation and scurvy than actual war wounds! The prize was won by a brewer called Nicolas Appert, and his invention was a well guarded secret until the English got wind of it at the turn of the following century. Interestingly can openers didn’t make their debut in England until the 1850s, so getting to the foods entailed brute force – rocks, bayonets, hammers and chisels, with no doubt an array of accompanying injuries!!
Tinned food is no doubt a lifesaver. Armies have marched on them, arctic explorers have explored on them, not to mention saving lives in emergencies across the world.
And that is the important word – EMERGENCIES!!
Most of us today aren’t travelling to obscure places, we have access to fresh produce and we also own fridges. So really, the only reason for using tinned food when you are at home is for convenience.
Sadly there is a gremlin lurking in the can. A chemical called BPA (Bisphenol-A) is used to line cans to stop them rusting and to keep foods fresh. It is also used in some water bottles. The problem with BPA is that it is a synthetic oestrogen (or “xenoestrogen” which means foreign oestrogen) and this encourages your body to go on a gender-bending, hormone-disrupting rollercoaster of a trip. Our bodies are finely balanced creatures and when we feed them foreign oestrogens, this can overload us into “oestrogen dominance” which for a woman can manifest in such conditions as menstrual problems, endometriosis and possibly cancers; and for a man, as man-boobs and prostate problems, including cancer.
So ask yourself – just how convenient is this convenience food? You might “save” an hour here and there TODAY, but in the long term how convenient is it when your health is under par and you cannot enjoy life as much as you would like or even worse become so ill that you spend more time at the doctors and hospital than at home?
I’m not saying, don’t ever use canned foods (I confess to having a few tins in our cupboard just in case) but don’t make them a daily staple. The problem is that these chemicals (not to mention the added refined salt, sugar and additives) push our bodies to the limit and have a cumulative effect.
It’s always good to be “food-aware”. What’s in it? Where has it come from?