Those fries aren’t all that harmless, are they? Today’s post is about french fries. Particularly fast food fries, I’m writing this post based off of McDonald’s in particular, but I have no doubt all fast food fries are all in the same “frier” so to speak.
So, what’s on that ingredient list found on McDonald’s website? First off, potatoes, I’m glad that’s the first ingredient. However, things get hard to pronounce nearer to the end of the list. TBHQ, tert-Butylhydroquinone is used in foods as a preservative. That sounds harmless enough, and it seems to be, but only in small doses. Doses between 1 and 4 grams can cause nausea, delirium, collapse, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and vomiting, according to Wikipedia. TBHQ is only the start though. The next one is much harder to spell. Polydimethylsiloxan (or dimethylsiloxane) is a silicon which, as noted on the website, is added as an anti-foaming agent. Anti foaming? What’s making my fries foam in the first place? Anyway, dimethylsiloxane is used in many applications. Apparently among them is hydraulic fluids, lithography, breast implants, silly putty, treatment of head lice, and an oil used for Applebees food. Beware this is not a complete list, there are more uses. Despite its wide range of uses, it appears that it has no adverse health effects in it’s normal use. Of course, the MSDS for it* seem to say otherwise on it’s own. Regardless, now you know a little more about those fries. Want to go out for lunch? I’m thinking something without dimethyl-somethingmadoodad.
*Material Safety Data Sheet