The Gatorade Game: What’s the BVO Deal?

So you’ve heard about brominated vegetable oil (BVO) being pulled from Gatorade, right?

If you want to know what’s behind the headlines, take a look at this Scientific American article from 2011.  There you’ll find the names of other popular drinks containing the substance (Mountain Dew, Powerade, etc.), as well as a decent explanation of why BVO isn’t something you want to ingest.

As always, companies that use chemical additives that are considered unhealthy at best, dangerous at worst, will fall back on the “But it’s FDA approved!” whine.  Frankly, such claims are more an indication of the FDA’s broken system than the substance’s safety.  Since the 1970s, BVO has been listed as an “interim food additive,” meaning it was once approved but is now questionable and should be subjected to additional testing.

Forty years later… nothing.  The FDA has shown no interest in researching a chemical implicated in cognitive decline, thyroid disruption, early puberty and other conditions currently on the rise–a rise mainstream medicine seems to be at a loss to explain.

Like many artificial colors, BVO is banned from the food supply in the European Union and Asia.  Yet it is still considered so “safe” under U.S. regulations that it’s in beverages routinely used in hospitals, athletic programs, and dietician-created food plans.  After all, it’s FDA-approved!

(Is Pedialyte any better? Well, it doesn’t contain BVO, but it does contain artificial colors that are banned in other countries.)

It’ll be months before the Gatorade on the shelves is BVO-free.  I haven’t yet heard if other brands are going to remove it from their beverages.  Your solution?  It’s the same solution you’ll find to most of these issues: eat and drink things as close to their natural form as possible.  Even if all those other countries are wrong and BVO has no adverse affects (a claim not even the FDA can make with a straight face), it has no value to the human body.

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About blair

Writer, educator, speaker, karateka, and proud single parent. Actively wondering every day.
This entry was posted in artificial ingredients, FDA, regulations and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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