In order to eat healthy and take care of your body, it’s important to avoid eating too many nitrates. Why is that? Added nitrates in food can affect your health in several ways. Eating too many nitrates can lead to blue baby syndrome, increased risk of cancer and complications during pregnancy.
While the body produces 62mg of nitrates a day, it’s easy to consume excessive nitrates through vegetable produce and meats. The reason excessive nitrates are bad news for your body because stomach acid does not break down nitrates on its own. Instead, a gut biome can convert nitrate to nitrite, leading to health problems like increased cancer risk.
A nitrate is a water-soluble inorganic compound. Most nitrates come from a person’s diet. In fact, an individual in the United States consumes 75 to 100 mg of nitrates per day on average. They are relatively inert, which means that they are stable and unlikely to change and cause harm until combined with bacteria in the mouth or enzymes in the body. In turn, they can turn into nitric oxide into something beneficial for the body and nitrosamines into somethingharmful to the body.
The good news is that nitrates can also be converted into healthy nitric oxide, which means that it does not need to be cut out entirely. Instead, people should eat natural nitrates, where the compound is found with other antioxidants and vitamins. Nitrates and nitrites occur naturally in vegetables, reducing the risk for some types of cancer and other diseases. According to a study, people generally obtain around 80% of their dietary nitrates from vegetables.
Some foods that are rich in natural nitrates include spinach, bok choy, lettuce, and carrots. Spinach is an excellent source of natural dietary nitrates as well as a great addition to salads. Fresh spinach contains anywhere from 24 to 387 mg of nitrate per 100 g serving. Depending on the growing conditions, this amount varies greatly. Bok choy has the highest nitrate content of all the cabbages. Bok choy can range from 103 to 309 mg of nitrates per 100 g, depending on the growing conditions. While lettuce isn’t known for its nutritional value, it contains many natural nitrates. It has a nitrate content of 13 to 267 mg per 100 g serving. Natural nitrates aren’t exclusively found in leafy vegetables. Carrots contain 92 to 195 mg of nitrates per 100 g, making them a slightly earthier alternative.
Nitrates and nitrites are commonly found in cured meats because manufacturers add them to preserve the meats. It’s thanks to these substances that cured meats are either pink or red because it reacts with the proteins in the meat, changing its color and helping preserve it. The biggest offenders of added nitrates and nitrites are bacon, ham, sausages, and hot dogs. Bacon contains up to 380 micrograms of nitrates per 100 grams. It also contains a lot of nitrites.
Since nitrates and nitrites are common in bacon manufacture, some brands identify their packaging as nitrite-free. The level of nitrates in regular bacon was approximately double that of nitrite-free bacon, up to 680 mcg per 100 g. Dietary nitrates are frequently found in the highest concentrations in ham. 890 mcg of nitrates can be found in a single 100 g serving of cured ham. This is where cured hams get their signature pink color. Another source of dangerous nitrates is deli meat. Uncured deli foods have roughly 300 mcg of nitrates per 100 g of meat, but cured deli meats have up to 500 mcg per 100 g of meat. Finally, hot dogs are one of the most processed types of meat on the market. The average hot dog has roughly 50 mcg of nitrates per 100 g of meat, including about 9 mg of nitrites.
Nitrates are also produced by the body and secreted into saliva. Nitrates and nitrites travel from the digestive system to the bloodstream, then return to the digestive system via saliva. They then act as antimicrobials in the digestive tract. Therefore, they could be beneficial in keeping the body healthy. They can aid in the killing of bacteria like Salmonella. Nitrates can also be found in water. Fertilizer use in some locations may result in excessive nitrates, which can be detrimental to children. As a result, nitrate levels in drinking water are regulated by health authorities.
Since almost everything has nitrates and nitrites, it is essential to figure out how to minimize nitrosamine exposure and consume it at a healthy level. Currently, processed meat contains less nitrite than it did a few decades ago. This is because manufacturers need to limit the number of nitrites they use in processed meats by law because of its dangers. As an alternative, they need to add vitamin C, which inhibits nitrosamine formation. In order to reduce the risk of nitrosamine exposure, consumers need to make wise choices when shopping for processed meat or anything that has nitrates and nitrites.
Scanning labels and nutrition facts for sodium nitrate, sodium nitrite, potassium nitrate, and potassium nitrite is a good way to check foods and beverages for nitrates. For example, to be sure you’re getting bacon that is low in nitrates, you can try buying local where possible or from a farmers’ market. Finding a supplier from pasture-raised pigs, or frying and cooking at a lower heat for longer and avoiding burning it can also help.
To provide the everyday consumer with the ability to know what is in their produce, blockchain-based organization Organicoin has created a device for people to understand what they are purchasing to eat with hard data. After analyzing all the most popular methods and devices available for measuring nitrates like electrical conductivity, nitrate meters, photometry, lonometry, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, the team concluded that none of the existing devices provides guaranteed accuracy of results.
Their device, Organalyze, was developed using the principles of photometry, which makes it more reliable, accurate and precise than other devices on the market. Using the principles of photometry, Organalyze can obtain large amounts of data and detect nitrates, as well as other harmful substances.
Organalyze pairs with any smartphone to measure the amount of nitrates and other substances in food. The data from user scans is ledgered in Organicoin’s immutable blockchain, which circumvents the shortcomings of available blockchains in the market. This allows users to compare their results with results from other food places, products or manufacturers at their convenience.
Organicoin’s airdropalso offers users the chance to earn 3 OCG (Organicoins) in return for completing a few tasks.
To get more information about Organicoin and its device and platform, click here or follow their social media below.