If you look at the Supplement Facts label on products you consume, at the bottom you’ll see a section labeled “Other Ingredients”. These ingredients, commonly referred to as “excipients”, are used to improve a product’s stability, appearance, texture, or taste.
Unfortunately, “Other Ingredients” is where you’ll find lots of unhealthy ingredients that manufacturers don’t want you to know about. If you look at the labels of leading immunity products, you’ll see a list of ingredients you’ve never heard of and can’t pronounce. Sugars. Colors. Flavors. Acids. Oils. Yuck.
A comprehensive list of ingredients you should avoid is painfully long (Whole Foods has a good start here). Below is a list of 5 unhealthy additives that are commonly used in immunity products and why you should avoid them.
5 Unhealthy Additives Commonly Used in Immunity Products
1. Fructose: Fructose is a type of sugar that is commonly used as a sweetener and often highly processed. Excessive fructose consumption has been linked to numerous health problems, including obesity, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance, liver problems, and cancer.
2. Maltodextrin: Maltodextrin is a highly-processed carbohydrate that is often used as a filler to improve texture, flavor, and shelf life. It has a high glycemic index and can cause a rapid spike in blood sugar levels. This can lead to insulin resistance, weight gain, and an increased risk of chronic diseases. It may also affect the balance of gut bacteria and cause allergies or intolerances.
3. Sucralose: Sucralose, known by the brand name Splenda, is an artificial sweetener. Although it is marketed as a low-calorie sweetener, it has been linked to various health problems, including diabetes, irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease, leaky gut, and weight gain.
4. Sorbitol: Sorbitol is a sugar alcohol that is often used as a sweetener. It isn’t absorbed well by the body and has a laxative effect that can cause bloating, gas, cramping, and diarrhea.
5. Artificial Flavors: Artificial flavors are substances used to impart flavor that are not sourced from nature. They are made by chemists and designed to mimic the taste of natural ingredients. The chemical combinations used to produce artificial flavors have been known to cause a host of health issues including high blood pressure, obesity, migraines, allergies, and nervous system complications.
When it comes to choosing products, make sure to carefully read the label and research ingredients you're not familiar with. Don’t forget to look at the “Other Ingredients” list. A good rule of thumb to follow: if something doesn't sound natural, it's usually not natural or healthy.
Also, don't forget about the "Added Sugars" that are shown in plain sight in the Supplement Facts! Leading immunity products contain several grams of added sugars.
Well Traveled doesn’t contain bad additives. You can read about each of the “Other Ingredients” we use and its purpose on our FAQs page.