The Horrors of Canned Food

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This is me after an intense allergy attack last week. Pretty scary, right? You can’t tell from this photo, but my skin was also red and blotchy and looked like I’d been stung in the face by a bee.

I want to share this so that you can see what canned food may be doing to your insides, just as it affected me externally.

One night, after a super busy day, I decided to make dinner that I thought was quick and healthy: canned lentil soup with brown rice with some spices.

A couple disclaimers:
I actually do not have a habit of eating canned soup, but we had it, so I decided why not. I also will admit that I’m slightly allergic to lentils (and anything in the legume family). However, I have eaten them before with no adverse effects, so when I decided to go with the Progresso can of soup, I didn’t think twice.

Well, dinner came and went, and that night I had a rare case of heartburn.

The next morning I woke up with one puffy eye, which began to balloon and spread to my other eye. Before I knew it my whole face was swollen!

As the Benadryl worked its magic, I wracked my brain, trying to think of what went wrong.

The more I thought, the more I began to suspect that my severe reaction had something to do with the can, since I usually ate soaked lentils from a bag. So I did some research.

What I learned about BPA

  • BPA, or Bisphenol-A, lines canned food. We’re learning more and more that this commonplace chemical can interfere with our immune systems and trigger allergic reactions.
  • As if you needed another reason not to have soft drinks, BPA is also in canned sodas. Because BPA disrupts hormone balance, this means gland function, like your thyroid, are impaired, which directly translates to further inability to lose weight.
  • In adults, BPA has been associated with heart disease, diabetes, and liver problems, while animal studies have found an increased risk of prostate and breast cancer.1
  • Children exposed to this chemical may suffer developmental problems!2

And somehow, in spite of new findings, this substance is FDA-approved.

I used to think it was better to have canned vegetables than none at all, but I’ve changed my mind.

What you can do

BPA is in everything – even receipts from the cash register! But you can reduce exposure by simply buying fresh vegetables and dry goods by bulk.

In the end, I should not have eaten the lentils to begin with. However, I firmly believe eating it in a processed form is what made my body react even more violently.

Having this happen has reminded me that I cannot, and will not, use convenience as a reason to eat canned foods.

Putting in the 15-20 minutes to make food is minimal investment to avoid a crazy physical case like this!

What about you? Have you experienced any symptoms like this and didn’t know what was happening? Let me know in the comments below!

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1. http://www.rodalenews.com/bpa-exposure-0
2. http://children.webmd.com/environmental-exposure-head2toe/bpa

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