Both my daughter Kellie and wife Sharon have been pestering me to do some research about our food and the additives and preservatives that are now added in our food in copious amounts. Armed with their “The Chemical Maze Shopping Companion -Your Guide to Food Additives” these two traipse around the food aisles reading products and labels. I can remember doing some semesters on this when I studied at Uni and college but over time have let my knowledge on this sit on my back burner I must confess. This was until the other day Sharon and I decided to have a picnic at the local beach near our home. Sharon emerged from the shop telling me the roasted chicken she just bought was full of preservatives and the bright green drink that said Lemon and Limewas also full of lots of interesting numbers. It was hard to believe that this poor old chook was covered in some nasty ingredients and that the yummy stuffing was laden with chemicals as well. Not to mention the multitude of numbers such as 211, 102, 133, that was in this bright green drink she just purchased. Further analysis tells me in fact it has 4% lemon and 1% lime in her “Lemon and Lime’ Juice. Hardly juice I thought to myself. Now armed with Kelly and Sharon’s Chemical maze book I look up some of these ingredients. So if you don’t have one of these trusty little pocket books let me enlighten you. 102 is Tartazine and its function is colour (Lemon to yellow/orange) and the potential effects according to this book is Asthma, headaches, learning difficulties, skin rashes, difficult concentrating, behavioural problems, avoid if you are aspirin sensitive, and suspected neuro toxicity. The last one stopped me in my tracks as only two days ago I finished reading an article about motor neurones disease and links with neuor toxicity from food. Of course when you find these numbers you can instantly discover whether you are in trouble as in the “code” section you have either a smiley face or a very sad looking face. 133, is, …..wait for it……”A Petroleum’ derived substance known as Indigotine. Its function is to produce the colour (moderate bright Green) potential effects are: Asthma, allergic reactions, hyperactivity and even hypotension. 211, is sodium benzoate (also Petroleum derived) an again we have a very unhappy face staring back at me from this little pocket book. Its potential effects are Skin irritation, headaches, stomach upset, asthma, and hyperactivity. I guess I could go on and on but just with this product alone you see the dangers we put ourselves into should we continue and constantly consume these products that are laden with preservatives and additives. My next step was to see if I could find in my local supermarket some products that didn’t contain preservatives that were listed as harmful. To my horror there was very little. Even our fruit and some vegetables are exposed to certain gases to ripen them. All the breads I found also contained some sad face ingredients. I decide to investigate further and found Cyndi O’Meara website, Here is an extract from her site. I suggest you take a good look at the site and start incorporating some of her suggestions and make some real habit changes. Cyndi’s qualifications include a Bachelor of Science degree majoring in Nutrition from Deakin University in Victoria and the University of Colorado in Boulder, Colorado. Cyndi also undertook postgraduate studies from RMIT Victoria in human anatomy, pathology, physiology and diplomas in diagnosis and management of health issues.

“Cyndi is a passionate, determined and knowledgeable speaker on health issues and uses her education and experience to help others improve their quality of life so they too can enjoy greater health and longer lives. Concerned by the state of our health system and the lack of educated consumers, Cyndi explores relevant and confronting issues such as cancer, diseases, diets, drugs and medication and asks people to make a choice about what they are willing to consume. She raises serious questions such as ‘Is margarine really the answer or is it a major contributor to obesity, cancer, diabetes and heart disease? Are artificial sweeteners the great low calorie alternative or deadly neurotoxins?’

Her unique, surprisingly simple and down-to-earth approach challenges and encourages others to eliminate unhealthy habits and have inspired thousands to make smarter choices about the food they choose to put into their body. By educating people on how to read food labels, why diets don’t work, and how drugs can affect your total well-being and vitality, Cyndi confronts her audiences with new truths and empowers them to make long lasting changes with simple and achievable steps on how to create healthier habits.

Cyndi is a highly successful and award-winning businesswomen, Cyndi was named Sunshine Coast Business Women of the Year in 2003. In every aspect of her life, she looks outside conventional thinking to find new ways of balancing her time with family, business and good health to create a wonderful, balanced lifestyle.

A lively and inspiring health expert and lifestyle coach, Cyndi O’Meara has regularly appeared on national talk-back radio to educate listeners on how to overcome health problems and lead a happy, healthy, high-energy lifestyle.”


I suggest you start trying to grow your fruit and vegetables (or buy true organic) raising some chickens (or buy free range organic meat), start baking you own bread (or buying organic preservative free bread), making your own sauces, gravies, bottling your own products, and drinking beer, water and wine that doesn’t contain, chlorine, fluoride, and preservatives. It is also a little known fact that one of the only beers that don’t contain preservatives is beer from Germany. In Germany it is illegal to put preservatives in beer. Start drinking fresh tank water …Oh!!!!  And some German beer.  


John Hart

“Master’s In Education” (Disability) Newcastle University Australia

“Grad Cert Education” Newcastle University Australia

“Diploma Fitness/Recreation”

“Diploma of Sport and Recreation”

“Cert 4 Personal Training”

“Level 1 Strength and Conditioning Coach”

Member of ASCA (Australian Strength and Conditioning Association)

5 Responses to “IS OUR FOOD KILLING US?!!!”

  1. Bill Statham July 27, 2011 at 2:00 am Permalink

    Hi John,
    Bill Statham here, author of The Chemical Maze. I just want to acknowledge your article and thank you for sharing your experience with others. You may be interested to know that the book is also available as as iPhone app which makes the information much more searchable.

  2. John July 27, 2011 at 9:00 am Permalink

    Hi Bill,
    YES !!! we love your book and I will post the iphone app on my site hope that may help a bit.. I also work at TAFE in QLD (Exercise science and Fitness) and your book is a big hit here:) actually one of me fellow lecturers is talking about your book tomorrow so she will mention the IPHONE app as well…
    John Hart

  3. Gabriel August 2, 2011 at 1:48 am Permalink

    Hey John,
    I just want to say thank you for all the information that you’ve given to us and for the good idea of put this very important subject on the table, also I would like to say that I just saw a very I mean “very good” documentary film related, it is call Food Matters (, about, nutrition water, energy, protein, and a handful of vitamins and minerals. If anyone gets the chance to watch, just do it, I highly recommend it.

  4. Kira June 18, 2013 at 3:09 am Permalink

    Thank you for sharing, being a mother of two small developing children this is always a concern. I have recently started growing vegetables and catching many fish. It is a great worry when most products claiming certain health benifits are using these claims to sell products and in fact are harming us, so deceptive and infuriating!

    Thanks John!

    • John June 18, 2013 at 6:06 am Permalink

      Hi Kira keep up the good work you are doing with your family my wife Sharon doesn’t go anywhere without the chemical maze …great tool you can also get the APP really worth it :)
      APP BY: Bill Statham author of The Chemical Maze.

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