Brominated Vegetable Oils: Should We Be Consuming This Stuff?

My Bariatric Life Health Guide
  • Sometimes I wonder. For instance, if a near majority of the scientific community says a problem exists is it not logical to at least consider the warning? The quick answer might be a quick yes, but wait a minute, not so fast. There are factions who not only deny the existence of such problems but also deny the legitimacy of science altogether.

    We are often a country of don’t worry, ignore it and it will not exist or ignore it and it will go away on its own. Good luck to us then.

    Much of the world seems to be a few steps ahead of us in protecting the best interests of their countrymen. Over here we have the left, the right, and a cavernous gap between the two that continues to grow daily. Meanwhile, let’s consume what other nations ban and ignore it as best we can so it will no longer exist or go away on its own.

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    Thank You Coca Cola

    Coca Cola recently announced that would be removing brominated vegetable oil (BVO) from their beverages. Pepsi is also on board and will remove BVO from their Gatorade drinks. That the ingredient is used as a flame retardant seems a pretty good reason to get out of what we drink.

    Japan and the European Union have already deemed BVO unfit for consumption although Coca Cola has not committed to such contentions just yet. They maintain that all their beverages are safe and always have been, even those with flame retardant as an ingredient. Besides, they comply with the regulations in all the countries where their product is sold. Feel better now?

    The truth is that the food industry is regulated pretty well, but there are some problems and I imagine we all would rather not have problems concerning what we drink and eat.

    Banned There But Thumbs Up Here

    BVOs are additives commonly found in citrus flavored drinks and sodas such as Mountain Dew, Fresca, and Fanta. 

    BVO has been banned in over one hundred countries and contains bromine, an element whose vapors are considered corrosive and toxic. Chemical bromine is found in many different products including a chemical used to treat surfaces for light-sensitive photographic printing papers and as an additive for gasoline. Bromine was used in sedatives until 1975 when the FDA banned the use because it triggered a number of psychiatric disorders.

    The purpose of BVO in citrus beverages is to stabilize citrus oils and prevent them from separating. These drinks tend to have a cloudy look to them.

    The claim is that BVO can be used in acceptable levels although it is stored in fat cells and can accumulate across time. If enough beverages containing BVO’s are consumed the side effects can start to present. Among these side effects are abdominal cramps, anxiety, blurred vision, diarrhea, dizziness, headache, nausea and muscle cramps.

    Living life well-fed,

    My Bariatric Life


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Published On: May 20, 2014