Let’s start with what Natural Flavor is by definition as defined by the FDA.
Natural Flavor The term natural flavor or natural flavoring means the essential oil, oleoresin, essence or extractive, protein hydrolysate, distillate, or any product of roasting, heating or enzymolysis, which contains the flavoring constituents derived from a spice, fruit or fruit juice, vegetable or vegetable juice, edible yeast, herb, bark, bud, root, leaf or similar plant material, meat, seafood, poultry, eggs, dairy products, or fermentation products thereof, whose significant function in food is flavoring rather than nutritional.
Y’all! This is why our family has rid our kitchen 99% of anything with Natural Flavors. Read the above very closely and realize that ANY food item you are reading can include any of those things. Look how broad those words leave it for food manufacturers. They can add synthetic chemicals, preservatives, “carriers” and other additives to a flavor that qualifies as “natural” under current regulations.
By now, many people know Vanilla Extract often has Beaver “secretions” (mmmmmm, hey there baked goods…) but think further about any animal and all parts. This isn’t just an issue for vegans. This should be alarming to EVERY person who cares about what they put in their body. The term “natural flavor” blanket covers for anything. It’s all fair game (no pun intended…)! The FDA holds zero accountability for companies disclosing where or what these flavors actually are! You are talking about God knows what “ingredients” taken to a lab and manipulated for “flavor”.
Also important to note, because there is no disclosure needed in ingredients, many people are eating foods that contain allergens they don’t even realize they are consuming! Enter illness, unexplained symptoms, toxicity, and disease!
Ok, so let’s kind-of end on something positive here.
IS ORGANIC BETTER?
In this case, our opinion is YES!
If you’re going to have natural flavoring, opt for all organic products!
Natural flavors allowed for use in certified organic foods are subject to more restrictions and regulations like being non-petroleum-based and not coming from GMO crops. They also do not have any ionizing radiation used in their manufacturing process.
There you have it!
We hope this helped clear up a few questions when it comes to Natural Flavors!
Copyright 2020 danielleharrell.com