Ingredients found in Instant Noodles are Toxic and Causes Cancer
If we look at the composition of instant noodles, it becomes clear where the danger comes from. They are high in fat, high in salt, high in calories, and they’re fully processed. Instant noodles also contain tertiary-butyl hydroquinone (TBHQ), which is a chemical preservative that comes from the petroleum industry. Tertiary-butyl hydroquinone (TBHQ) is a preservative that can be found in instant noodles and has been a source of many health discussions.
TBHQ is used to extend the shelf life of oily and fatty foods, so it can often be found in fast food. It’s also used in varnishes, cosmetics and perfumes. TBHQ is highly toxic BUT have been approved for use in the food industry. A number of studies have shown that prolonged exposure to high doses of TBHQ is carcinogenic.
Small doses of TBHQ have been approved for consumption by the FDA in the US. The FDA has set the limit of up to 0.02% of the total oils in food to be TBHQ. If you consumed 1 gram of TBHQ, this would very likely cause an adverse reaction, and 5 grams could be lethal.
Nobody is really sure what the safe limit is, but its not a good idea to have TBHQ lingering in your gut.
Another potentially toxic substance that is found in instant noodles is monosodium glutamate or MSG. This is a chemical called excitotoxin that overexcites your nerve cells. The Experimental and Clinical Sciences journal reported that “MSG has been linked with obesity, metabolic disorders, Chinese Restaurant Syndrome, neurotoxic effects and detrimental effects on the reproductive organs” The journal also adds that “in conclusion we would like to state that although MSG has proven its value as an enhancer of flavour, different studies have hinted at possible toxic effects related to this popular food-additive”.
Instant Ramen Noodles Don’t Break Down After Hours of Digestion
In another study, scientists put a little, pill-sized camera inside the stomach of a person who just ate instant Ramen noodles. This enabled them to follow the digestive process and observe what happens once the quick meal reaches the stomach.
The results were disheartening for all instant noodle lovers. It appears that the body has great difficulty breaking these noodles down.
Here is a video showing what happens when you eat instant noodles
After two hours, the meal was still more or less intact, which is very unusual. For comparison, when the participant ate homemade noodles, these digested much quicker, so after two hours there was hardly anything left to see in the stomach.
This small study was conducted by Dr. Braden Kuo of Massachusetts General Hospital, and was the first experiment of its kind. Dr. Kuo points out that his experiment doesn’t show instant noodles are necessarily harmful for you.
The sample was too small, and further research is needed to establish the effects the slow digestive process has on the gastro-intestinal tract and your body as a whole. Dr. Kuo even admits still eating instant Ramen noodles himself, but he does it in moderation.