What's all the fuss over over nitrates and nitrites?

What's all the fuss over over nitrates and nitrites?

By itself, nitrite isn't so bad. But when it is eaten, it can transform into nitrosamine compounds, considered potent cancer-causing chemicals.

Q. Which meal below would you consider supportive of brain health? And please explain-what's all the fuss over over nitrates and nitrites? 

a) Scrambled eggs cooked in butter plus a generous topping of cheese and sour cream
b) Green salad with lean chicken or turkey ham topped with low-fat Caesar salad dressing.

A is the healthier meal. For one, eggs are nutritious and are considered brain food.

Vegetables are very good for you; however, we do not know about the toppings. Perhaps the ham is laced with preservatives and additives, including aspartame and nitrite.

By itself, nitrite isn't so bad. But when it is eaten, it can transform into nitrosamine compounds, considered potent cancer-causing chemicals.

This occurs when a chemical reaction happens between nitrate (added to food) and amines (found in protein that is present in the body).

Added to processed foods, this chemical, also known as sodium nitrite or potassium nitrite, prevents the contamination of foods by controlling the toxin production of clostridium botulinum (which causes botulism).

In the US, these chemicals are allowed to be used, setting the limit to one part nitrite to 120 parts per million.

Nitrates for fertilisers are suspected to enter the food and water supply. And this is why proper farming is a big issue.

Nitrite and nitrosamine are linked with increased cancer of the colon, lung, pancreas, liver, etc.

How to neutralise nitrite poisoning? Take megadoses of vitamin C and E, beta-carotene and flavonoids.

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