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You might want to read this article before you bite into that juicy, fast food burger. In 2012, McDonald’s publicly vowed to change its burger recipe after losing a battle to a famous British chef who exposed to the world that the beef used at McDonald’s was not fit for human consumption.
Jamie Oliver, also known as The Naked Chef to television viewers, took on McDonald’s over a period of about two years in demonstrations and a documentary showing how they made their beef with “pink slime”. You’ve heard of the “pink slime” beef, haven’t you? In a nutshell, it is unwanted beef trimmings and fat that is infused with ammonia hydroxide. Basically, it’s prepared this way to kill harmful bacteria such as E. coli and other pathogens. So you see, the USDA thought this process was improving your safety when in fact the ingestion of the meat was actually harmful.
In 2012, ABC News reported that “pink slime” made up about 70% of all beef sold in stores. Shortly after the investigative report was released, many restaurants stopped buying grocery store beef and restaurants began to ban “pink slime” beef, switching to 100% ground beef with no fillers.
While Oliver was victorious in a lawsuit against McDonald’s in 2011 proving that the burger meat contained LFTB (Lean Finely Textured Beef), it’s still not clear that the restaurant no longer uses the dangerous trimmings as filler today. “Pink slime” is still widely used in processed meat production in the U.S.
Why is this important information for Black America? Because people perish from a lack of knowledge. Fast food restaurants and McDonald’s, in particular, put a lot of effort into marketing to Black America. We, in turn, feed these dangerous chemicals repeatedly to our children and ingest it ourselves. Then we end up with life-threatening illnesses such as cancer, leukemia, and other rare diseases. Would you allow your child to drink ammonia from your cleaning cabinet? Of course not, it could harm or even kill them depending upon the amount ingested. That’s why these cleaning agents are locked away or placed out of reach of your children. That’s good parenting. But later, you unknowingly feed them processed foods that include bacteria-laden scraps washed in these same caustic chemicals.
Fast food isn’t the only culprit. Other processed foods such as cheeses, and even cookies often have small amounts of harmful chemicals, like ammonia, included in them, used to balance acidity. “Pink slime” gets all the attention, but there are many foods that ammonia products are used in.
The USDA and FDA tells us that consumption of these foods washed in ammonia is safe and harmless when ingested in small amounts. But you know as well as I do that their measurements are based on serving sizes. Now, you tell me. Do you or your children ever eat the recommended serving size? Not with those double meat burgers and super-sized meal deals. I’m also doubtful that you measure the servings at your home cooked meals. When is the last time you had one cup of spaghetti? We eat until we’re personally satisfied. We must be smarter and make healthier food choices. Our lives and our future depends on it. Eat carefully. Live longer.