If this doesn't goad you into eating more fresh food, I don't know what will. (gullible fool that I am, I didn't realize that the blueberries in muffin mix aren't real!)
Today, at the start of the 21st century, the miracle of food processing has brought that dream closer to reality than ever before. From vitamin-free "blueberry bits" to spray-can cheese to avocado-free guacamole, food scientists have worked tirelessly to bring us new and exciting foods that contain as little nutrition as possible.
Spray-Can 'Easy Cheese'
Dipping a butter knife into a tub of cheese spread and putting it on a cracker takes a lot of time and effort. Thankfully for all of us, the wizards at Kraft have developed a product that ensures we’ll never again run the risk of hurting our wrists trying to spread processed cheese. Kraft’s Easy Cheese cans combine the soulless tastelessness of its cheese products with the convenience and simplicity of whipped cream cans.
Oreo Cookie Death Filling
It’s rare to encounter a food that makes you say, "If only this were as healthy as frosting!" And yet, the filling in Oreo cookies manages to accomplish just that.
You see, typical frosting is made mostly from butter, milk, sugar and vanilla extract. No one will ever accuse it of being good for you, but at least you're eating fairly natural fats. Oreo stuffing, on the other hand, is basically sugar-flavored Crisco. Seriously, that’s what you’re consuming when you eat an Oreo.
Artificially Flavored Blueberry Bits
Frozen waffles are fairly non-nutritious. Indeed, the only real way to get any sort of vitamins in your waffles each morning is to buy blueberry waffles that contain….
But, hang on! It turns out those aren’t blueberries at all! They’re more like…well, just what are they? An apt description would be "purple globs of sugary goo," but they’re actually called "artificially flavored blueberry bits." Their ingredients include sugar, dextrose, soybean oil, soy protein, salt, citric acid, cellulose gum, artificial flavor, malic acid, Red 40 Lake, Blue 2 Lake and…that’s it. Notice anything missing? Oh yeah: blueberries!
Kraft’s Avocado-Free Guacamole
This right here may be the pinnacle of processed food magic. Kraft has managed to make a food product without an actual main ingredient, akin to tomato-free tomato sauce or potato-free baked potato. Yes, there are no avocados in Kraft’s guacamole. Then what is it made of, you ask? How about some modified food starch, coconut and soybean oils, corn syrup, food coloring…in other words, you’re eating green-colored oil.
Ah, soup. It’s the food mom used to feed us when we were sick. Every child has fond memories of being nursed back to health by sipping at the warm, nutritious broth of chicken noodle soup. Of course, mom probably didn’t realize at the time that she was setting you up for a future of high blood pressure and kidney failure. Because if she fed you condensed soup from a can, she was loading your young body up with insanely high amounts of sodium.
Spam was really a major miracle of food science, as it solved a mystery that humanity had been trying for centuries to figure out: namely, how to make meat-flavored Jell-O. Developed in the 1930s, Spam is derived primarily from pork shoulder meat (seriously) and combined with water, sugar, sodium nitrate (of course) and copious amounts of salt. The result is a meat-like goo that derives 80 percent of its calories from fat and that delivers a whopping 790 mg of sodium per two-ounce serving.