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FASCINATING FACTS OF THE DAY: 18 Surprising Facts About Food That Will Change The Way You Think About Them

 

We all know that food is essential to survival. But we are not content with what the earth produces, humans have tampered with the food in order to create better food, plentiful food or varied food, this has resulted in several unforeseen outcomes; Some are good and some are bad. These shocking facts about food will give you a new perspective about food that you had  taken for granted.

1. In the united states, nearly 40% of produce grown is never sold or eaten because it is too ugly.

Image source: Keith Heyward(vimeo)

As consumers don’t want to buy imperfect vegetables and fruits, grocery stores deny to stock them. According to report by the Natural Resources Defense Council, It is estimated six billion pounds of fruits and vegetables are wasted every year in the U.S. because they look imperfect.(source)

2. Confectioner’s glaze, a common (and shiny) coating on candies and pills is made from bug feces. The glaze is made from the resin excreted by female lac bugs which are indigenous to India and Thailand.

Image Source: pillsvscandy

Shellac is also known as Confectioner’s glaze is processed into natural flakes, dissolved in ethanol to make liquid shellac. It is then sprayed on food products and even on apples to give it that shiny luster. They are used to make lacquer for hardwood floors and furniture’s.(source)

3. Many commercial bread makers use L-Cysteine, a softening agent that softens the dough and prolongs its shelf life. L-Cysteine is made from human hair and duck feathers.

Image Source: allindiaroundup

Many commercial bread makers use L-Cysteine, a dough conditioner to speed up the industrial processing. This non-essential amino acid is obtained by dissolving human hair in an acid and isolating L-Cysteine through a chemical process. Most of the hair for the process is obtained from barber shop and salons. When human hair is not available or is  expensive, people use duck feathers, chicken feathers, cow horns to extract the softening agent.(source)

4. Chocolate was used as currency by the Aztecs.

image Source: chocolateclass

The Aztecs could not grow cacao tree in the dry highlands of Mexico, so they traded for it with the Mayas and other people for the Cacao seeds. The subjects of the Aztec kingdom had to pay a tribute, people who lived in cacao growing areas paid their tribute with cacao seed.(source)

5. Fruit flavored snacks such as gummy bears are made with the same wax found in car wax. Carnauba wax, the key ingredient that gives the brilliant shine on the automobile is also found in fruit flavored snacks.

Image Source: vat19

Fruit flavored snacks are processed foods which mean they have to have a long shelf life, must look, smell, taste appetizing. A bit of nifty engineering is done to ensure this longevity and one of the products used to ensure the shelf-life is carnauba wax. This wax is made from the leaves of the palm tree and is used to provide the gloss for the automobiles, wooden floors, shoe polish, and surfboards.(source)

6. Tomato Ketchup was used as a medicine to treat diarrhea in the 1800’s.Image Source: maharajawhitelineindia

John Cook Bennet, an Ohio-based physician asserted that Tomato can be used to treat diarrhea, violent bilious attacks, and indigestion in 1834.  He published recipes for tomato ketchup which was then concentrated and sold as pills (medicine) across the country.(source)

7. Honey is made from nectar and bee vomit.

Image Source:funbuzztime

Nectar is extracted from the flower by the bee and stored in its stomach. The stored nectar mixes with enzymes and its chemical composition and PH are transformed. When the bee returns to the hive, it passes the collected nectar by regurgitating the liquid into the other bee’s mouth. A process of evaporation removes the water and transforms it into honey.(source)

8. A Snake Blood Wine is an instant wine where a waiter takes a live snake, kills it on the spot,  drain the blood into a shot glass of rice wine/Vodka, and top it off with the Cobra’s or some other snake’s still-beating heart for you to gulp down! This is available in Vietnam.

Image Source: reneseifert

This is a trend that became wildly popular after the release of Leonardo Di Caprio’s The Beach in 2000. Since then tourists who visit Vietnam make it a point of going to Le Mat, the notorious snake village to drink the blood of the snake and its beating heart and gall bladder. The blood of the snake is said to enhance the virility of the person who drinks it.(source)

9. Casu Marzu otherwise known as “Rotten Cheese” is made from Sardinian sheep milk cheese. It is a cheese designed to be eaten while infested with live cheese fly larvae(maggots). 

Image Source: vimeo

A regular slab of sheep cheese is allowed to go beyond the normal fermentation stage. The larvae of the cheese fly are added to the cheese and the acid from their digestive system breaks down the cheese making them squishy and liquidy. The locals deem the casu marzu as unsafe once the larvae die, hence, the cheese is served while the maggots are still alive. Some people eat the cheese as it is (consuming the wiggling larvae) while others clear the maggots from the cheese. Those who leave the maggots in the cheese have to be extra careful while eating it because the maggots, when disturbed has the tendency to jump up to six inches.(source)

10. While peanuts were used to create the dynamite, scientists now have found a way to turn peanut butter into diamonds!

Image Source: mentalfloss

Dynamite was invented by Swedish chemist and engineer Alfred Nobel. Dynamite is based on nitroglycerine, which is procured from glycerol. Glycerol is obtained from processed peanut oil, however, this is not the only source of glycerol.

Dan Frost, a research scientist at the Bayerisches Geoinstitut, University of Bayreuth, Germany placed some peanut butter between two diamonds and compressed it resulting in the (peanut) diamond. The peanut diamond, though not pure is still a diamond. According to the researchers of Edinburgh University, diamond can be manufactured from any carbon-containing materials, including peanut butter.(1,2)

11. Milt, considered to be a tasty delicacy is Fish sperm/semen and is popular in Japan! the taste is somewhat similar to pork brains.

Image Source: flyingporkbelly

Milt is also known as soft roe is basically sacks of fish sperm that is either eaten raw, fried or poached. Milt is considered to have soft, creamy, custard-like texture and is consumed in Japan and regions of Europe.(source)

12. Pozole, a traditional Mexican stew was originally made with human flesh by the Aztecs. When the practice of cannibalism petered out, Pork was introduced as the substitute.

Image Source: Youtube

Pozole means ‘hominy’, it’s a traditional stew, which once had religious overtones. Since Maize was a sacred plant for the Aztecs, Pozole was made for special occasions. According to research by the Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia (National Institute of Anthropology and History) and the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, the meat used in the preparation was that of a human. After a prisoner was killed with his still-beating heart torn out in a ritual sacrifice, the rest of the body would not be buried rather they would be converted into meat for Pozole. The resulting meal would be shared by the whole community ( as part of religious communion).(source)

13. Chicken today contains 266% more fat and 33% less protein than it did 40 years ago.

Image Source: ohmyfoodnesssite

The chicken was long regarded as the least fatty and healthiest of all among meat types but it is not true anymore. A new study has, found that the chicken has more fat than protein, in 1970, A chicken would have an average of 8.6 grams of fat and 24.3 grams of protein per 100 grams of meat serving. Today the scale is reversed with fat at 22.8 grams and protein at 16.5 grams. Modern farming methods that consist of providing calorific cereal-based food and sedentary lifestyle of the chickens is said to be the prime cause for the fatness in the chicken.(source)

14. The popular Jell-O is made from collagen extracted from the skin, bones, and connective tissues of animals such as domesticated cattle, pigs, horses, pigs,chickens and fish.

Image Source: momontimeout

Gelatin is the main ingredient for Jell-O. Gelatin a translucent, brittle flavorless food that comes in the form of sheets, powder or granules. They dissolve when heated and solidifies when cooled. Kraft Canada who makes Jell-O Jelly powder says,

“Gelatin is sourced from the hides of healthy animals that undergo strict inspections. Gelatin is made from collagen, a protein that comes from animals fit for human consumption.During the manufacturing of gelatin, chemical changes take place so that the final product, the composition, and identity of the original material is completely eliminated.Contrary to popular belief, our gelatin is not manufactured from bones, horns or the hooves of animals.1,2)

15. Regular intake of Fast food has the same impact on the liver as hepatitis. Hepatitis can ultimately cause liver failure.

Image Source: theodysseyonline

“The Doctors” revealed study findings that discovered that regular consumption of fried snacks can lead to a condition known as fatty liver. The liver enzymes undergo drastic changes within a month of consistently eating fast foods. The study found that french fries in particular, was the most dangerous because of added ingredients.The changes in the liver enzymes (due to fast food consumption) is strikingly similar to the damage as seen in hepatitis.(source)

16. Virgin Boy Egg is a popular spring tradition in China, where the urine of boys under 10 is collected and eggs are boiled in it and consumed. It is said that the boiled eggs taste like spring.

Image Source: 1,2

Urine is collected from school toilets or from the buckets placed for this express purpose. The eggs are soaked and boiled in the urine. The shells are cracked and cooked on low heat. The dish is popular due to its salty taste. The Dongyang residents who make these eggs claim that they prevent the body from heating up provides better blood circulation and generally reinvigorates your tired body.(source)

17. Regular consumption of instant noodles, including Ramen, may lead to heart diseases, diabetes, and stroke.

Image Source: ramenreporter

The recent Baylor research published in The Journal of Nutrition offers new data about the effects of eating instant noodles on a regular basis. Dr. Shin who led the research discovered that consuming instant noodles two or three times a week had an increased risk of developing cardiometabolic syndrome. Shin’s study revealed that women were more likely to develop these conditions than men.(source)

18. For centuries, before the advent of refrigeration, Russians would drop a live frog into the milk bucket to prevent it from spoiling. The secretion from the skin of the frog prevented the milk from turning sour.

Image Source: discovermagazine

Strangely, this bizarre practice has its basis in science. Moscow State University’s organic chemist A.T.Lebedev’s research shows that the frog’s skin is loaded with peptides, antimicrobial compounds that are deadly to Salmonella and Staphylococcus bacteria.(source)

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