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Home »  Living Healthy »  Find Out If The Top 11 Foods We Consume Daily Are Adulterated: Follow These Simple Tips

Find Out If The Top 11 Foods We Consume Daily Are Adulterated: Follow These Simple Tips

Adulterated food can be harmful for health for the sole reason that the adulterants are made with toxic chemicals and colours. Read here to know how you can differentiate between adulterated food and natural, organic food.

Find Out If The Top 11 Foods We Consume Daily Are Adulterated: Follow These Simple Tips

Harmful additives are injected in fruits to make them look more attractive

HIGHLIGHTS

  1. Food is adulterated to increase its shelf life
  2. Food adulteration is often done to make food look more appealing
  3. Adulterated food can be harmful for your health

We come across various food items, which seem real, but are actually loaded with adulterants. Adulterants are added to food in order to increase its shelf life. Food adulteration is also done to make food look more appealing. Top examples of food adulteration include glossy apples, unusually sized vegetables like bottle gourd, cucumber, etc, extremely red watermelons, bright shiny green peas, etc. No matter how much you try, it may be difficult to differentiate between adulterated food and natural, organic food. It is especially a cause of concern since most of these adulterated foods are used on day-to-day basis. 


Here are some ways through which you can detect adulterated food:

1. Chili powder: Chili powder in your kitchen can be adulterated with brick powder. To find out, put a teaspoon of chili powder in a glass of water (full). If the water colour changes to red and earthy, then your chili powder is adulterated.

2. Milk: Milk you drink everyday can be adulterated with substances like urea, detergent, fat, water, synthetic milk. There are many ways to detect adulterated milk. One options is to boil the milk. After boiling, if a yellowish lather forms on top, then the milk is synthetic. Another option is mixing about 10 ml of a milk sample with an equal quantity of water and shaking the mixture vigorously. Pure milk will have a thin layer of foam while milk adulterated with detergent will form a dense lather.

3. Coconut oil: Coconut oil you use for cooking various food items can be adulterated with other oils. To identify adulteration, take the coconut oil sample in a bowl/glass jar and place it in the fridge for 30 minutes. Your entire sample will solidify, if the coconut oil's pure. Other oils will be seen as a separate layer, if the sample is adulterated.

Also read: When Chemicals Are Used To Scare You About Food

4. Green peas: Fresh green peas can be added in several food items. But the peas you consume can be adulterated with malachite green. To find out the adulterant, soak peas in warm water for 30 minutes before rubbing it gently. If a green colour leaks into water, it is indicating presence of malachite green in your peas.

5. Apples: Your fresh, juicy apples can force you to go to a doctor. Apples are adulterated with wax for that shiny, glossy look. You can even find additives injected in these apples. For detection, you can use apple cider vinegar mixed in water. Afterwards, use a paper towel or clean cloth to wipe apples with the solution. Later on, wash the fruit with water. You can also use a knife for scrapping apple skin slowly. If the knife extracts white output, then that's wax!

6. Honey: Honey is a natural sweetener, which is often considered to be healthier version of sugar. However, the different varieties of honey present in the market can be adulterated with water and other artificial sweeteners. To find out, use a cotton wick to dip it in honey and burn it. The wick will burn rapidly if your honey is pure.

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Varieties of honey sold in the market may be adulterated with harmful chemicals
Photo Credit: iStock

7. Coffee powder: Instant coffee can be your go-to friend but it can be adulterated with substances like chicory, caramel, twigs, roasted corn. To find out the authenticity, mix coffee in water and leave it aside for 5-7 minutes. The coffee powder will float, while the adulterant will settle down, leaving a coloured trail.

Also read: Why Coffee Addicts Are More Sensitive To The Smell Of Coffee

8. Cinnamon: A cheaper alternative called Cassia is sold in market, in the name of cinnamon. To find out the authenticity, try to break the stick. Real cinnamon sticks break easily. While breaking the same, if your hands get coloured, then your cinnamon is authentic.

9. Eggs: Yes, even eggs can be adulterated. You might not know but fake/plastic eggs are being sold in the market. You can find out fake eggs by checking the egg's shell. A fake egg has got a rougher and shinier shell (unlike the real one). Yolk being more yellow than usual is also a sign of fake egg. Real eggs smell like raw meat, unlike the fake ones with no smell.

10. Butter/Ghee: Butter you use for toasts, the ghee you use for parantha can be adulterated with starch, vegetable oil and Vanaspati ghee. One way to find out adulterated butter/ghee is by melting a small quantity of ghee/butter. Pour it into a glass jar and place it in the fridge until the butter/ghee solidifies. If separate layers form up, your butter/ghee indicate the presence of other adulterants.

11. Salt: Salt can be adulterated with chalk powder. To find out your salt's purity, stir a spoonful of salt in a glass of water for few minutes. If solution turns white and the residue settles at the bottom, it indicates the presence of chalk. A clear solution indicates purity.

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.

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