I had always tried to avoid eating processed carbohydrates, such as crisps and chips, because these particular foods claim to be made out of potato which is a very starchy “vegetable”. So I was beyond shocked when I found out that certain crisps, such as Pringles aren’t even made of potato!
The process of making these crisps starts off by a slurry of rice, bits of wheat and corn, and potato flakes which are then pressed into shape. This forms a dough-like substance which is then rolled into an ultra-thin sheet and cut into chip and cookie shapes by a machine. Then, the crisps are placed onto a conveyor belt and pressed into moulds (this is how they get the curve that makes them fit into one another). The moulds move through boiling water and are fried for a few seconds. Then they are blown dry, carelessly sprayed with powdered flavour, and hastily flipped onto a very slow-moving conveyor belt, in a way which allows them to stack. It’s off to the innocent mouth of the customers after that.
Another massive concern as to why I am quite cautious when eating crisps and chips is because of the use of Acrylamide. Acrylamide is a cancer-causing and neurotoxic chemical; it is created when carbohydrate rich foods are cooked at extremely high temperatures, whether they are baked, fried, roasted, or even toasted. Many foods that are cooked or processed above one hundred degrees Celsius have a very high chance of containing Acrylamide.
If there is a very high dietary intake of Acrylamide then there is an increased risk of Cancer. The allowable limit of Acrlamide intake is 60 micrograms, so I was completely taken aback when I found out that a six-ounce serving of chips/French Fries could contain up to five hundred times the allowable limit of Acrylamide!
And my astonishment didn’t stop there, I bet you all thought baked crisps were healthier than fried? WRONG! Baked crisps can contain up to three times the level of acrylamide as regular crisp!
Pringles are a very popular and well-loved snack, they have a thin crisp texture and come in many mouth-watering flavours. So I am very disappointed to find out that Pringles are not only cancer-causing, the amount of potato that’s is in them is so low that it isn’t classed as potato at all!