15 Facts That May Change The Way You Look At Food

Posted Jun 11, by Val Liarikos

Twinkies are famous for being unhealthy (and delicious). They're also known for their long shelf life due to their many preservatives. If you're eating a Twinkie, it's not for the health benefits. But what is actually in a Twinkie? You might be surprised.

Apart from enriched flour, sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and partially hydrogenated oils, Twinkies also contain beef fat. Vegetarians beware! One Twinkie contains 2.5 grams of saturated fat, which is 13% of the daily recommended fat intake based on a 2,000 calorie per day diet.

Overall, a Twinkie is 42% sugars, 21% complex carbohydrates and 11% fat by weight. As far as the urban legend that claims that Twinkies can last months or even years on the shelf, this false. Although it does last longer than other types of food due to the preservatives and the way it is made.

A Twinkie can usually last 7-10 days on the shelf but can sometimes be safe for 25 days or more. Conclusion? You wouldn't want to stock your bomb shelter with them because not only would they not provide any nutritional benefit but they wouldn't last very long either.


Curry is one of the most popular dishes in Japan today. Most commonly it is served in three main forms: curry rice, thick noodles, and kare-pan. Curry rice is typically what is called curry. Japanese curry utilizes many different vegetables and meats. The base curry vegetables are onions, carrots, and potatoes. 

The base meats most often used are beef, pork, and chicken. Curry was first introduced to Japan during the Meiji era, which lasted from 1868 to 1912. The British, who then had India under their administration, first brought the dish over. The dish became popular very quickly as a “western” food, and by the 1960s it became so popular that it was available for purchase in supermarkets and restaurants. 

Today, it has been so widely consumed that it is considered a national dish. It’s since spread to South Korea, which happened during the period of time that Korea was under Japanese rule in the early 20th century. Most Japanese restaurants in South Korea serve curry. So prevalent is Japanese curry today that if you have a local Asian supermarket, you can no doubt find some instant curry there. 


Mongolians used to eat raw meat that they kept under their saddles to tenderize. The same concept eventually became steak tartare.

Steak tartare is made of finely chopped or minced beef and is often made with choice cuts of strip steak. Historically speaking, the legend is that the dish is named after the Tatar people in Central Asia who ate raw meat as they rode their horses. They didn’t take the time to stop and eat and it is even said they kept the meat under their saddle to tenderize it.

It was made famous in France where they marinade the meat in wine and spices then chill it. It’s often served with onions, capers, and raw egg yolk! It’s thought of as a gourmet dish or a delicacy in many European countries. The fact that it is raw meat is alarming and really unhealthy. Health concerns in itself have caused for the dish to be somewhat less popular in some places, but it is still ok in others. So, next time you go to Europe, watch for the raw meat delicacies!


Mitsuyuki Ikeda and his team of researchers were asked by Toyko Sewage to come up with a way to use the over-abundant sewage mud in the city. After performing lab tests, the scientists found that the waste was high in protein.

They isolated the protein, modified it with enhancers and soy proteins, not to mention some red food coloring, and created a "feces steak". According to the researchers, it is "63% protein, 25% carbohydrates, 3% lipids, and 9% minerals" and tastes like real beef. This meat is much better for the environment, considering the greenhouse gas emitted from slaughterhouses.

If we can overcome the grossness of eating something derived from human feces, perhaps it will be another step on the way to ameliorating world hunger and reducing our impact on the environment!

Update: Taco Bell says their meat is 88% beef.

In response to allegations made last week, Taco Bell is running an ad campaign to 'set the record straight.' The ads are entitled 'Thanks for suing us,' and go into detail describing the Bell's not-so-secret formula:

"We start with USDA-inspected quality beef (88%). Then add water to keep it juicy and moist (3%). Mix in Mexican spices and flavors, including salt, chili pepper, onion powder, tomato powder, sugar, garlic powder, and cocoa powder (4%). Combine a little oats, caramelized sugar, yeast, citric acid, and other ingredients that contribute to the flavor, moisture, consistency, and quality of our seasoned beef (5%)."

It's good to know the beef percentage isn't likely to be as low as originally alleged; however, keep in mind that this is damage control. Taco Bell's fare is probably no worse than most fast food out there, but the important thing to remember is that it IS fast food. No one said it had to be healthy, just quick. If you REALLY want to know what's going into your food, learn to cook it yourself...or marry someone who will do it for you.

See the Taco Bell response ad here.

Why would wouldn’t the egg cross the Atlantic? Because it’d be illegal on the other side. Due to US and European regulations, egg produced in one region would be illegal on the other. Why exactly is it though?

Eggs in America are required to be washed before selling them to the public. In Europe, they are required NOT to be washed or cleaned in any way. Yes, that means that an European egg could contain traces of chicken poop.

Why would Europe not want eggs to be washed or cleaned? The head of the British egg council says that it’s because it promotes cleaner farms. That is, a farmer knows it must produce clean eggs so that people buy them.

The USDA, however, thinks that no matter how clean a farm is, you can still get traces of chicken manure on your egg shells and if you touch something else, you might catch something.


The terms "white meat" and "dark meat" come from the Victorian era when people were too embarrassed to use the words "leg" and "breast"! Victorians were a bit uptight to say the least. There were many taboos and words that were rude to use. The words breast and leg were a bit of a taboo. So, to specify what part of the fowl they wanted to eat, such as chicken or turkey, they would say “dark meat” or “white meat.” To this day we use these terms, but in all actuality we are following the Victorian era faux pas.

The euphemisms used by the Victorian era people are still used and we don’t even realize why we use them. Today, they’ve just been integrated into the way we talk about meat and the parts of it. They no longer denote the leg or breast, but the color or part of meat we want to eat. The origins of the terms nonetheless are from the Victorian era people who were too embarrassed to say breast or leg in the presence of others.



Once you read this article, you’ll wish you hadn’t. On that note, this is extremely graphic and will seriously bum you out. If you want the short answer to the above question, it’s “nothing good.” 
In the egg industry, it’s the females that matter. Female chicks = female future chickens = future eggs = future profit. Males on the other hand aren’t of much use. The chickens generally just need to produce unfertilized eggs and don’t need to reproduce, and since the males don’t produce eggs, they basically don’t get to live long. 
The only exceptions are the ones needed to grow into roosters to produce more chickens, but those are very small in number compared to the amount of those not needed. 
So what happens? Any of a few things. Most commonly, they are ground up alive. Workers stand beside a conveyor belt of chicks, sorting out the males and females. The workers toss the males into the chute of a sort of grinding machine. 
Right now there is a push to make egg industries include this information on the egg cartons, but it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere any time soon. Animal cruelty is pretty common in the food production industry, and this is really just the tip of the iceberg. One could even make the argument that it’s better because the chicks don’t have to suffer long. Pigs, on the other hand, often live horribly miserable lives stacked on top of each other in steel cages. 

Aerosols were invented by a Norwegian named Erik Rotheim in the 1920s to help him put wax on his skis. The most expensive aerosol made was a diamond spray used to rub down precision moulds.

However, the most popular aerosols are deodorant and body spray which were first introduced in the UK in 1954. The first aerosols in the UK were insecticides, though, made in 1949. 

Pepsi decided to make an aerosol for astronauts so that they can drink cola in space. Without the aerosol can, the cola would spray all over them and soak them. 

Aerosols are good for many things, including 

  • Helping pigs mate and help lambs accept foster mothers. 
  • Empty aerosols can be recycled. 
  • In Japan, they use them for coffee and chicken soup. 
  • The U.S. has ketchup, cheese, and mustard aerosols. 


Having your utter pulled constantly can get a little bit stressful. Sometimes all you need is some nice, classical music to help you relax and “get the juices flowing.” So when farmers play classical or soft music in the cowshed, they receive about 1 extra pint of milk from their cows.

Some of the most popular hits are Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony and Simon and Garfunkel’s Bridge Over a Troubled Water. Some farmers have even tried using this yield-increasing method on chickens. Supporting this practice is a study carried out by the LCAH Dairies in Linconshire and Bishop Burton Agriculture College in Humberside.

Researchers found that a cow’s milk yield rose by 3% a day when slow music, rather than fast or no music was playing. They came to the conclusion that in much the same way that music helps humans relax, it also helps animals relax. The group is now seeking further funding to continue their research on animal musical therapy.


It seems that they even they know they’re delicious! Cannibalism is the leading cause of death for laying hens. It is a serious welfare and economic problem at chicken farms. Though, cannibalism is somewhat normal in the animal kingdom, it is considered abnormal behavior in captive populations.

Farmers have tried to reduce the problem by trimming hen beaks. However, this is not a good solution, because the pain it causes can cause the hens to become apathetic! It was once thought that hens became cannibalistic due to protein deficiency.

The most accepted explanation is that hens need to be able to forage (search for food). The more foraging a hen is allowed to do, the less likely they are to peck at each other. Evidence has also suggested that cannibalism within poultry is a learned behavior. This means that if a chick or young hen witness’s violence between other birds, they are more likely to become cannibalistic themselves, which is a pretty creepy thought! Those beady little eyes really are paying attention and learning.


Have you ever wondered why those tasty chicken sandwiches only have pickles on them?  

According to the chairman and founder, S. Truett Cathy, pickles were the only condiment he had on hand when he was making the sandwhich.  The pickles alone worked so well they stuck to it!

Thank god he didn't just have radishes or beets laying around...


Chicken farmers have been feeding chickens arsenic for decades.

There’s not enough arsenic in the chicken we eat to kill anyone, but legally, stores and restaurants can sell chicken to American consumers with an arsenic concentration as high as 500 parts per billion (that’s 50 times higher than the allowable concentration of arsenic for drinking water). Arsenic has been part of chickens’ diets since the 1940s. It’s an ingredient in a feed additive called roxarsone that helps chickens grow bigger and fight against parasites. By 2000, 70% of all commercial chicken producers used roxarsone.

In response to some of the concerns over health risks, many chicken producers since then have stopped using arsenic, including Tyson, Bell & Evans, Eberly, and the chicken farms used by McDonald’s and KFC (though tests show that some of their chicken still have trace elements of arsenic). To be safe, someone weighing 154 pounds shouldn’t eat more than 2 ounces of chicken every day.
(Sources: 1, 2)

\"\" 23 million chickens are killed for food in the U.S. every day.

That’s 269 birds turned into KFC every second! Modern chickens are also bred to be abnormally heavy, which means that many cannot support their own body weight. The California Poultry Federation estimates that 30 chickens are consumed per Californian! All in all, 9 million chickens are slaughtered for food per year, which makes up 90% of the total land animals that are killed for human consumption.

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