Burger with a Side of WHAT???

Burgers and fast food, we know, are not exactly a healthy option. High in saturated fat and calorie-laden they are not a recipe for a healthy body, but surely the odd burger can’t do any harm - can it? Our article looks into the hidden “sides” that fast food is served with. Here are 5 things your drive-through certainly doesn’t want you to know!

Antifreeze anyone?

Limp lettuce and dry pickle in your burger may be unappetizing, but so too is the alternative. Many fast food chains use a food additive to add moisture to food, keep it firmly frozen and enhance the flavor. It keeps lettuce crispy and ice cream firm. Unfortunately, this wonder product is propylene glycol, a key component of antifreeze and certainly not found on any healthy eating list.

Sprayed on “grill” marks

Nothing looks more appetizing on a steak or burger than grill markings, but you need to examine the labeling to discover the source. If it says the product was char-grilled or fire-grilled, odds are the markings are from genuine applied heat. If those terms are not referred to, the brown lines were probably sprayed on at the factory.

Meat in your milkshakes or fries

Even vegetarians fancy a fast food treat once in a while and may opt for a milkshake or a serving of fries (the oil is usually canola or peanut oil, after all). However, many fast-food outlets include beef additives in their shakes and fries under the general non-specific term of “natural flavorings”, “extract” or “essence”. If this matters to you, then you need to research which companies make this a standard practice, and avoid them.

Cleaning products in your eggs

Some of the best restaurants and fast food outlets are scrupulous about cleanliness. They use super-clean concentrates to wipe down all surfaces and equipment at the end of each night. Unfortunately, these chemical contaminants still linger in the morning. If you are one of the first customers to order coffee and a breakfast sandwich, they could well be contaminated with cleaning products. The later you order, the better, in this case.

Dirty bathroom = Dirty kitchen

You can tell a lot about a restaurant by its bathroom. Kitchen staff often have to use the public amenities, so if a restroom does not have a supply of hot water, liquid soap and paper towels or has an out-of-action hand dryer, perhaps it’s time to eat elsewhere. Not only is it likely that the kitchen staff’s personal hygiene is lacking, you may infer that if a business ignores its bathroom hygiene, it probably doesn’t keep on top of its kitchen hygiene either.

Unfortunately, these horrors are all too commonplace, but being aware of them may just curb your appetite. If not, beware of these hidden dangers and wherever possible take the necessary steps to keep your family safe from these hidden “sides”.

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