Artificially added phosphates can damage health
A toast Hawaii or cheeseburger without the classic sliced cheese is hard to imagine for many. It would be healthier if, for example, thin slices of Gouda or Edam would be used. Because the processed cheese slices contain artificially added phosphates, which can harm health in large quantities. Accordingly, fans of the slices should not eat too much of it, but instead should instead resort to alternatives more often.
Sliced cheese for baked dishes
Many people love it when dishes are baked with a lot of cheese. Grated cheese such as e.g. Scattered Gouda or Mozzarella. Other "classics" such as the toast Hawaii or cheeseburger, on the other hand, are often topped with sliced cheese.
But this is not entirely harmless to health. As the NDR business and consumer magazine "Markt" reports, the processed cheese in slice form contains artificial phosphates, which can increase the risk of a heart attack or stroke or lead to osteoporosis in an emergency.
Excess phosphate is excreted
Cheese in itself is a very healthy food because it is particularly rich in vitamin A and various B vitamins (especially vitamins B2 and B12), calcium and high-quality protein. Cheese also contains natural phosphates, which are e.g. play an important role in all growth and development processes, the production of genetic material and protein metabolism. Excess phosphate does not get into the blood, but is excreted through the kidneys.
Artificial phosphates are popular in the food industry
However, the popular sliced processed cheese also contains artificial phosphates. These ensure that the cheese melts evenly - and thus does exactly what consumers want when they e.g. use for burgers or baked toast. The artificial substances are not only found in processed cheese, but also enable e.g. Stable foam in the ready-made cappuccino, keeps pudding powder pourable and is added as a preservative to meat and sausage products.
The problem with this: the artificial phosphates are mostly freely soluble and therefore remain almost completely in the blood. The more fast food and other processed finished foods are eaten, the more "the body is flooded with phosphates", according to the experts from Markt-Magazin.
Risk of heart attack and stroke
People with kidney disease can often no longer excrete the phosphate in the urine, which can have numerous bad consequences. According to the magazine, studies have shown that phosphate changes the inner walls of the vessels, which increases the risk of a heart attack and stroke. Too much phosphate in the body also increases the risk of osteoporosis. Because the artificial substances release calcium from the bones and make them brittle. Furthermore, the aging of the skin and muscles could be accelerated according to the report.
Large amounts of phosphate are also problematic for healthy people
However, too much phosphate in the blood not only poses health risks for people with kidney disease, but also poses a gradual risk for healthy people. If too much of it is constantly ingested, the kidney gradually loses its ability to remove the excess from the blood filter. Even a slightly increased value would damage the blood vessels in the heart, the report continues.
"Experimentally, it could be shown that too much phosphate in the blood leads to muscle breakdown, but on the other hand also to calcification of the vessels, the soft tissues or to a thickening of the heart wall and subsequent heart pump failure," explains the internist and kidney expert Dr. Kai-Michael Hahn.
Only rarely consume cheeseburgers and ready meals
Instead of preserved food or ready-made meals, consumers should therefore better put fresh food on their plates. For example, nuts and legumes are very suitable for supplying the body with natural phosphorus.
To check whether there are any phosphates added to food, just look at the label. Because they are permissible, but they must e.g. be declared as "melting salts". Other labels include the codes E338, E339, E340, E341, E1412, E1413 and E1414. How much phosphate was added to the respective products, however, can unfortunately not be found in the information required by law. (No)