Have you ever wondered why some dried fruit looks weird?
Check out these organic apples – they are brown!
But, you know what? These are the best type to eat.
Most dried fruit contains the preservative sulphur dioxide (number 220) which gives dried fruit its bright colours. It is also used to stop the fruit from going mouldy.
Dried fruit seems like a harmless snack to feed our kids and a great natural sweetener in baking, but eating too much 220 can cause lots of problems.
“In Australia, dried fruit can contain extremely high amounts of sulphites – 3,000 parts per million (ppm) compared to 2,000 ppm in the UK, and far higher per serve than any other food consumed by children. To put that into perspective, the Acceptable Daily Intake of sulphite for a 10-year-old weighing 21kg is just 15mg of sulphite per day. That is ONE dried apricot.” The Food Intolerance Network.
The Chemical Maze Handbook (which I suggest everyone should get), puts a big 🙁 on 220. They say its potential effects are ‘asthma, destroys Vitamin B1 and is recommended to avoid.’
Tanya from the Additive Free Pantry says “220 is known to cause development delay, diarrhoea, nausea, swelling, destroys vitamin B1, anaphylaxis, bronchitis, stomach upset while also prohibited in foods for infants. Sulphur dioxide can be fatal to an asthmatic. This is the simple reason we do not consume 220. Not worth it!”
So how do you avoid sulphur dioxide?
Read labels, read labels, read labels!
Don’t buy anything that says sulphur dioxide, preservative 220 or 221,222, 223, 224, 225.
Choose organic where you can – it shouldn’t have additives and preservatives.
These organic dried apples pictured, have 100% organic apples and they look brown – so brightly coloured fruit should send warning signals to you! Sulphur dioxide-free apricots look brown, not orange! I think they taste much better, too!
Of course, drying your own dried fruit with a dehydrator is a great way to ensure you know exactly what’s in your dried fruit too.
And then there’s sunflower oil!
I only recently became wary of sunflower oil too. It is in a lot of dried fruit like sultanas, to keep them from sticking together.
So, is your dried fruit safe? Is this something that worries you?