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Packaging, WHY?!!!!!

Disclaimer: Amy is not a doctor. Refer to your medical professional for any medical advice.

This was my reaction when I learned of the extent of my allergen in packaging of all products. I’m sure you’ve seen the plastic cups and other plastics proudly exclaiming “MADE from CORN”! But for those of use with sensitivities to corn this is brings up emotions of fear.

Here is a breakdown of items with corn in them which create reactions for those with sensitivities or allergies.

IMPACT OF CORN-BASED PLASTICS ON SOIL BIOMES

One of the biggest benefits of corn-based plastics is its ability to breakdown faster when buried. But what you are not told is that in normal conditions it still takes 1,000 years for the plastic to decompose in a landfill. The Scientific American wrote an article discussing the pros and cons of corn-based plastics, also known as polylactic acid or PLAs. “The Environmental Impact of Corn-Based Plastics” This article discussed many aspects of PLAs. Beyond most cities not having the capabilities to create an industrial landfill just to handle the needs of decomposing PLAs, they also discussed the need to keep PLA separated from regular plastics. This article was written in 2008, but in 2022 we still have these issues. As of recently, there were only 100 such landfills available to take in PLAs.

CORN STARCH USED IN PLASTICS

If you drink water from a plastic bottle, it is likely to be made from a PLA. How did I learn this? First by getting sick after taking a sip of water from a plastic bottle. The industry wants you to believe that the materials to make the bottle won’t leach into the product. They are wrong. After I became ill, I started researching how plastic bottles are made. Low and behold, corn starch is a main ingredient in most plastic water bottles. My choices for water are unfiltered (water filters are made from plastic) from my kitchen tap or specific glass bottled waters.Mountain Valley sells water in a green bottle and I react to their water. Is it the bottle? Or is the cross-contamination from the facility? The brand I reach from is Acqua Panna. I have limited reactions to this brand.

It goes beyond bottles. In fact, most products packaged in plastic wrap are made from some level of corn. You will find the issue in styrofoam with the soaker pad.

ALUMINUM AND CORN

Did you know a plastic liner is adhered to the inside of aluminum cans? I did not until recently. I’m not sure when this went into effect. In going through my old research for my book, it looks like aluminum cans are also sanitized with citric acid which is also derived from black mold. Either way I avoid store bought beverage that comes in an aluminum can. I do use metal water bottles, usually double-walled, for my own water usage. The difference is I don’t clean them with citric acid and they are not lined in a corn-based plastic liner.

PLA’S AND PLASTIC TABLEWARE

I remember going out for ice cream not long after the start of my corn journey. My husband and I chose a creamery with better ingredients to give me a chance at not reacting to the food. I ordered what looked like the safest option and ordered it in a cup. This required me to eat it with a plastic spoon. Two bites in and a wave of nausea swept over me and the headache stepped in. I know now that the cup and spoon were the culprit. To-go cups are made from paper with a corn-based wax lining to keep the paper for deteriorating with food in it. The corn-based wax does leach into your food. This happens more when heated up, say like in a coffee to-go cup. The spoon, like most plastic tableware, is also made from PLAs.

CORNSTARCH TO KEEP PRODUCTS FROM STICKING TO PACKAGING

I have discovered the hard way how many companies use cornstarch coated packaging for their products. This is why I cannot trust buying anything in a grocery store. Do you have plastic bottles in your pantry or refrigerator that claim you will get every last drop of the product out? Massive amounts of cornstarch is used to make that bottle. Did you know Ball Canning Jars use cornstarch on their lids? This is why I am not able to can my own food.

I ordered what should have been safe-for-me chocolate and was corned after one piece. Why? The wrapper was coated in cornstarch and I did not know. I think a lot of companies use something similar to the plastic lining in aluminum cans on their foil wrappers as well.

THE ALLERGY CONCERN

Beyond the effect on our environment and food, there are a minimum of 500,000 people with some level of corn allergy. A minimum. That is just in the United States. Across the globe our citric acid, dextrose, and other corn-based ingredients are shipped to be the base ingredients for their food. Links are starting to show up in countries from Sweden to the United Kingdom to Mexico to Africa of the impact on the human body. Poor health from diabetes to cardiac arrest, are side-effects of eating to much processed food. Not only are we consuming it directly, but indirectly through how food is packaged for sale.

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