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Chemicals in Fast Food: 3 Fast Food Ingredient Secrets

Anthony Gucciardi
October 11th, 2011
Updated 11/17/2012 at 2:02 pm
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junkfood 210x131 Chemicals in Fast Food: 3 Fast Food Ingredient Secrets

Most health-conscious individuals avoid fast food restaurants like McDonald’s at all costs, and for good reason. Fast food chains often use genetically modified ingredients, artificial sweeteners in sodas, heavy metals across the board, high-fructose corn syrup as a cheap yet deadly sweetener, and a variety of other toxic chemicals. In fact, oftentimes fast food ‘meat’ products are comprised of synthetic meat ingredients — it even says so on the official recipe. Here are 3 fast food ingredient secrets about chemicals in fast food.

1. Wendy’s Frosty

Wendy’s Frosty is loaded with corn syrup, artificial flavors, and a long list of thickening agents. In fact, it takes 14 ingredients to create this fast food milkshake over the traditional two: ice cream and milk. Chemicals in fast food for this item are guar gum, cellulose gum, and carrageenan –  all used in the recipe to artificially create the thickness and texture of the drink. What truly reaches a new level in synthetic toxicity, however, is Wendy’s new Coffee Toffee Twisted Frosty.

With the addition of  ‘coffee syrup’ and ‘coffee toffee pieces’ comes an extra 25 ingredients, including a laxative chemical known as propylene glycol that is also used as a filler in electronic cigarettes. Along with the synthetic laxative comes 7 sugars including high-fructose corn syrup, and 3 different oils. Coffee, the main focus of the beverage, is listed at the very end of the nutrition label — number 8 out of the 10 total base ingredients.

2. Chicken McNuggets

Chicken McNuggets would appear to contain bread and chicken, perhaps a bit of seasoning for flavor. What it actually contains has given it a reputation as one of the worst food items on the planet. The meat alone in McNuggets is compromised of 7 different ingredients, many of which are made up of several other ingredients. Some ingredients that make up the ‘meat’ include sodium phosphate, safflower oil, wheat starch, dextrose, and a particularly dangerous substance known as autolyzed yeast extract. Autolyzed yeast extract is similar to MSG, an artificial sweetener that has been linked to obesity and other health conditions.

Frighteningly, these are not the worst chemicals found in McNuggets. Dimethylpolysiloxane, a type of silicone, is added as an anti-foaming agent to the nuggets. This is the same ingredient that is used in breast implants and silly putty, yet McNuggets are marketed towards children with complete disregard for their health. Chicken McNuggets truly represent the crazy use of chemicals in fast food

Although not quite as common today, PDMS has also been used in breast implants as a filler fluid. In addition, it is also widely in cosmetics and consumer products.

Dimethylpolysiloxane is being phased out as a breast plant filler due to safety concerns, yet McDonald’s has been using it in their McNuggets which are being consumed by millions worldwide.

3. McDonald’s Salads

McDonald’s salads, often pushed as a healthier alternative to other fast food items on the menu, contain cilantro lime glaze and the orange glaze. Within the glaze lies propylene glycol — a chemical that is not legal to use in cat food because its safety has not yet been proven. In addition, propylene glycol is also used “as the killing and preserving agent in pitfall traps, usually used to capture ground beetles.”

McDonald’s salads also contain two ingredients that divulge the presence of MSG: disodium inosinate, and disodium guanylate. Chemical-loaded salads are no better than other menu items which have similar recipes and equally-devastating ingredients. Fast food establishments as a whole are extremely harmful to human health worldwide, contributing not only to soaring obesity rates, but to cancer, diabetes, and other crippling diseases as well. It is important to remember that the ingredients are key to determining the health of a food item, and they should be thoroughly examined before making the purchase.

Unfortunately, there are also chemicals in fast food wrappers that are causing harm to your health. These are only some of the countless reasons to avoid fast food at all costs.
About Anthony Gucciardi:
1.thumbnail Chemicals in Fast Food: 3 Fast Food Ingredient SecretsGoogle Plus ProfileAnthony is the Editor of NaturalSociety whose work has been read by millions worldwide and is routinely featured on major alternative and mainstream news website alike, including the powerful Drudge Report, NaturalNews, Daily Mail, and many others. Anthony has appeared on programs like Russia Today (RT), Savage Nation, The Alex Jones Show, Coast to Coast AM, and many others. Anthony is also dedicated to aiding various non-profit organizations focused around health and rehabilitation as well as the creator of the independent political website Storyleak

From around the web:

  • Tobias Berg

    Did you do these chemical tests yourself or is there in fact a source to all this.?

  • anonymous

    ‘guest’, did you even read the comment? i don’t know, maybe i’m just a staunch libertarian, but you are responsible for your life, not the government or him or her or me. you can’t help if the government falsely plants evidence on you and locks you up, but you can help what you eat. it’s true, the government is complicit in keeping people uneducated and these stories out of the news, but i agree with joseph, people need to wake up! i mean, just pray everything will turn out alright? i think we have the individual responsibility to make things happen. i mean, i agree with you too, we can’t and don’t control the government, and it probably needs to be overthrown, but, just chill yo

  • anonymous

    exactly, the FDA is one of the worst organizations ever created and really is just a conduit to allow corporate crime and subsequent decreasing public health to be allowed and worst yet, legal.

  • anonymous

    there really isn’t any excuse when it comes to your health buddy, i mean, all that time you spend on the road, if you bought food from farmer markets locally as your drove from town to town, you would save a ton of money that you would have spent killing yourself with fast food, if you’re trying to ‘save’ time, you should actually look at life and all the different ways you can ‘make’ more time..

  • anonymous

    a lot of things were accepted and deemed safe by some organization, like the FDA, or whatever, but over time, it turns out that these chemicals they’re putting in food (um, why?) actually turn out to be completely toxic and cancerous.

  • anonymous

    “there will always be” she says.. so that’s it then? it’s dangerous poison and we just have to submit to the ‘fact’ that it will always be like this so what’s the point? did you read the article? all bets are off, not just whether the beef patty is 100%. yeesh.

  • meow

    meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow meow

  • meow


  • @dana_che

    EW!!! This makes me want to vomit. I avoid fast food at all cost, save Chick-Fil-A, which I consider to be a healthier option if need be. Reading some of the ingredients and the fact that some of them aren't approved for animal usage makes me all the more resolute about not eating at these obesity farms. Thanks for the post!

  • Jeff Lanthripp

    Propylene glycol? A laxative? Are you sure you don’t me polyethylene glycol? They’re very different, but I suppose to a layman who never even did a cursory amount of research, it all looks the same…

  • paigenewton2012

    There will always be a lot of preservatives in fast food. I do bet that the burger patties are no longer purely 100% beef, but I bet some fried chicken recipes are not really that full of preservatives.

  • steepsand818

    I must say that there's this australian meat company that provides the best beef and pork in town. I was already able to try their ham and it's the best one I have tasted.

  • nora

    I love their chicken nuggets and you know what… I actually PREFER that its bleached cause than it dosent look like a fried chunk of animal. I mean, unless you eat there regularly, it probably aint gonna kill you.

  • chris

    Jake. Your glazing over the overall message. McDonalds puts more unnatural ingredients in food than natural and claim it to all be healthy. Your definition of GMO is completely different from genetic selection. The likelihood of crops being modified genetically even 100 years ago is unlikely.
    Regardless, Jake, please keep feeding the fast food corps as you seem to know best.

    • Anonymous

      I don’t know what that is

  • Jake

    Propylyene glycol has been accepted as food safe for human consumption. The reason it's not safe for use in cat food is a very specific blood disorder that is specific to felines. Uneducated, fear mongering articles are why food can't be sent to feed starving people. Apparently its better to let them starve to death than let them eat corn sugars or genetically modified foods which by the way all fruits, vegetables and animals have in some way been genetically selected for thousands of years. The point is, be careful with your food fears. As much as it surprises me, some people actually believe you know what you are talking about…

  • Vivian

    Now, I'm taken aback that a huge corporation like Mickey Ds would allow genetically modified foods on its menu, The evil Monsanto has won another battle, but not the war

    Wake up people! Become very aware of your environment. These Franken Foods will leach out and burn up earths soil. It causes unspeakable harm to human bodies and the government STILL allows it all , sans labeling, of course .

    Please,know what you're eating . It will literally KILL YOU.



    This article is somewhat spotty.

    "and a particularly dangerous substance known as autolyzed yeast extract. Autolyzed yeast extract is similar to MSG, an artificial sweetener that has been linked to obesity"

    Similar how?

    I am similar to a monkey. However i am clearly not a monkey"

    Why is there not a cited reference?

    • jeannie

      Not to mention that MSG is NOT an "artificial sweetener", it's a flavor enhancer and it's probably the least of the evils in fast food.

      • b

        Thank you. I was feeling a bit lost when I read that!

  • BRY

    takes a lot of forethought to avoid fast food if lots of time spent on the road; i am a truck driver, such a tough life and hard to get out of once into it…

    thanks for your informative articles! (ps, is MSG a sweetener or a flavor enhancer?)

    • joe

      MSG is a chemical that basically a strong salt. I'm not an expert, but MSG is used in a lot of foods, especially chinese foods, you will notice from the strong flavor and the chemical aftertaste it leaves. Some food chains will use this chemical to enhance or rather hide bland or bad flavored foods. Some people are allergic to MSG and the two chemicals listed in the McSalads actually hide the traces of MSG which may make a person sick and they won't be able to trace it back to the salads. something like that.

    • joe

      I know you spend a lot of time on the road, but when you can, avoid the chains restaurants in favor of sit down restaurants. hell maybe pack yourself a cooler with some food you made in advance or some sandwhich stuff you can put together when you pull over to rest. It's likely to save you some money and be better for your health.

  • GoVegan

    I can only say 1 thing, boycott Mc,KFC,Wendy, for the animals, for the environment, for the starving people, for your health

    • EatMeat

      I agree, I love fast food, but after reading this, I am disgusted. the FDA needs to close all chains that use chemicals and enforce the use of natural ingredients. No more pink slime, no more hormones, no more pesticides, no more chemicals. I would only accept preservatives in low amounts to keep foods fresh, but then again they can do away with that by freezing the food. I expect heavy lawsuits to occur and heavy fines. Hell, fining these companies heavily could ease the economic crisis.

  • ~*Echo*~

    OMG! That is really bad. We are doing a powerpoint for math class about the information that is uncovered and we used the information on this website. We WILL give you guys credit!

  • Mitch

    JC there is somewhat right. It dont matter the color, we are letting it happen to all of us. Bill Cooper would tell us we are all stupid sheeple and we deserve what we have coming, if we do not get off our butts and do something about. from Socialist Darwinism to Eugenics, we all have been reduced to product in this big ANIMAL FARM, waiting for big government to "save us", welcome to Democracy=Communism. Eat up Winston, Eat up.

  • JoesphConrad

    The most dangerous ingredient in American foods is the profound STUPIDITY of the american consumer! Americans are killing themselves and their children because they they PRAY, attack Non-whites and supportfuel multiple foreign wars with more enthusiasm than they THINK & REASON. Net result? Food tha is Death Dealing! Th U.S. just loves it!

    • Guest

      It's not "The American Consumer" that supports all the BS and the abhorrent actions our political leaders commit. We are lied to and on our mainstream media the pressing issues are not reported on. Our news is filtered and watered down and used as propaganda. Our political figures support the killing of non-whites and multiple foreign wars based on fuel and gold.

      You sound very ignorant making such a generalization about an entire country that has 0 say in the things that go on in said country, now that money rules over any laws or authority. Money is authority in this capitalist nation, but that isn't our fault. The poor suffer, the rich prosper; you think we enjoy that? I can give you a hint that I'm not in that "1% you're always hearing about". Money talks and bullshit walks and THAT is what's killing this country.

      Do some research before you open your mouth.