What you Eat When you Eat Processed Meat


Maneka Gandhi


(Bihar Times) What is processed meat ? Processed foods have been altered from their natural state for convenience. The methods used include canning, freezing, refrigeration, and dehydration.

While frozen vegetables, fruit and their juice still preserve vitamins and minerals , most processed foods are made with trans fats, saturated fats, and large amounts of sodium and sugar. This includes all meat/fish based items like hot dogs, hamburgers, sausage, ham etc.
Here is the 10001 reason not to eat processed meat: ammonia.
Ammonia is the chemical that causes the disgusting smell that comes from urine. It has now been discovered that the meat industry has been injecting ammonia into their processed meat.
Why ?
Most meats contain the potentially deadly Ecoli bacteria which now has been found to cause kidney failure as well as food poisoning. Eight years ago, officials at the United States Department of Agriculture were approached by a company called Beef Products which came up with the idea of injecting beef with ammonia. According to them, dipping the meat into ammonia would kill E. coli as well as salmonella. This idea was immediately accepted .

With the U.S.D.A.’s stamp of approval, the company became the country’s main supplier of processed beef. McDonald’s, Burger King and other fast-food giants use it as do grocery chains and fast food restaurants. The federal school lunch program used an estimated 5.5 million pounds of the processed beef in 2009 alone. McDonald’s hamburgers have contained Beef Products meat since 2004. Cargill, one of the nation’s largest hamburger makers, is a big buyer of Beef Products’ ammoniated mash for its patties. It is the major supplier of meat to all the fast food companies. Beef Products produces seven million pounds of beef a week .

Now the scam has been exposed by the New York Times.

If you're in the beef business, what do you do to make even more money ? Usually all the unwanted cow parts and fat scrapings are thrown away or sold for pet food? Eight years ago , it was discovered that if the company liquefied all this together into a pink mass, sent it through pipes in the form of pink slime where it was injected with ammonia gas and then frozen and compressedit could be sold as well as normal beef. Ammonia, a chemical commonly used in glass cleaning and window cleaning products, is used to kill the e.coli bacteria that was on this low grade filth that is sold to fast food restaurants to make into hamburgers.

But ammonia has been found NOT to kill pathogens.. The New York Times has just revealed secret government and industry records which show that E. coli and salmonella pathogens have been found dozens of times in thousands of kilos of Beef Products meat . School lunch officials knew that from 2005 to 2009, Beef Products had a rate of 36 positive results for salmonella per 1,000 tests, compared to a rate of nine results per 1,000 tests for the other suppliers. But they continue to feed Beef Products to their children because it was 2 cents cheaper than other meat. Beef product’s response to the ammonia treated beef being full of E Coli is to increase the ammonia.

As the NYT reports, "The company says its processed beef, a mashlike substance frozen into blocks or chips, is used in a majority of the hamburger sold nationwide. But it has remained a secret to the public as government officials agreed to the company's request that the ammonia be classified as a 'processing agent' and not an ingredient that would be listed on labels.". So you can inject a beef product with a chemical found in glass cleaning products and simply call it a "processing agent" -- with the full permission and approval of the USDA, no less! Obviously bribery is alive and well in America too.

What else has been injected that fast food eaters don’t know about ?

In every study, the consumption of meat has been found to raise the risk of cancer by 20 to 60 percent, while causing mutations in DNA.. In particular, processed meats have been found to be associated with higher risk of cancers of the lung, esophagus, liver, breast ,prostate ,pancreas and colon, among others.The evidence continues to mount, as demonstrated by a recent study showing a 67% increase in pancreatic cancer for people consuming even moderate amounts of processed meat. (Pulse; 4/23/2005, Vol. 65 Issue).

The reasons ? One is the saturated fat content of processed meats. Toxic chemicals, heavy metals like mercury, cadmium and pesticides are found inside fat molecules. Fat tissues -- whether in a cow or a human -- tend to concentrate whatever pollutants are found in the diet. These toxins, when consumed, are unquestionably linked to cancers as well as nervous system disorders that can accelerate Alzheimer's disease and dementia. They also stress the liver and impair immune system function. The human body should never be exposed to mercury, PCBs or chemicals like perchlorate that are now almost universally found in milk products.

The second reason processed meats is the use of a cancer-promoting additive called sodium nitrite which is used by the packaged meat industry to turn meats bright red. It's a color fixer, and it makes months’ old, dead grey meats appear fresh . Sodium Nitrite wreaks havoc with internal organs: the liver and pancreas in particular. You can find sodium nitrite in every packaged meat product imaginable. It's listed on the label of bacon, sausage, beef jerky, pepperoni, luncheon/sandwich meat, ham, hot dogs, and even the meats found in canned soups.

And now you know you have ammonia as well. Ammonia is used in household cleaners, window cleaning products ,fertilizer, synthetic fibers, plastics, and explosives. It is a corrosive substance which can cause burns and open sores.

So, when you eat a Hamburger from any fast food chain you get the same effect as opening a can of bacteria ridden dog food made with beef byproducts, spraying it with ammonia, and swallowing it. It's enough to make you want to puke. Thank God I don’t eat meat.

To join the animal welfare movement contact gandhim@nic.in


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