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All-Natural Bananas Are Filled With Chemicals

Illustration for article titled All-Natural Bananas Are Filled With Chemicals

The next time you're peeling a fresh, organic, "all-natural" banana just remember: it's filled with tons of chemicals! But don't worry, so is everything else.


James Kennedy, a chemistry teacher living in Australia, has created some fun images that show just what chemicals are lurking inside your favorite foods — even the "organic," unprocessed ones.

As Kennedy explains, there's a lot of panic right now about the chemicals we're consuming. And the hype around words like "natural" — a word whose definition isn't regulated by the FDA — is mostly just marketing.

Some people care about different ingredients such as "E-numbers". I made this graphic to demonstrate how "natural" products (such as a banana) contain scary-looking ingredients as well. All the ingredients on this list are 100% natural in a non-GM banana. None of them are pesticides, fertilisers, insecticides or other contaminants.

There's a tendency for advertisers to use the words "pure" and "simple" to describe "natural" products when they couldn't be more wrong. With this diagram, I want to demonstrate that "natural" products are usually more complicated than anything we can create in the lab. For brevity's sake, I omitted the thousands of minority ingredients found in a banana, including DNA.


So here's a fun game: choose maybe half a dozen words from Kennedy's banana list and read them to a friend. "Would you eat a food with ethyl butanoate, phenylalanine, and aspartic acid...."

Illustration for article titled All-Natural Bananas Are Filled With Chemicals

[James Kennedy]

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I hate eating chemicals of any sort. That's why I consume nothing but the cold, unforgiving vacuum of outer space. (And even then, I sometimes get trace atoms stuck in my teeth. Pisses me off.)