A few people may actually be surprised to learn that store-bought stock cubes and broth are not the same. In fact, some brands of stock cubes can actually contain some pretty harmful ingredients such as:
Salt is usually the first ingredient. This is probably a refined salt that contains anti-caking agents, bleaches and only two minerals – sodium and chloride, as all the other minerals have been refined out of it. If the salt has been iodised then it will have the rock potassium iodate added to it as well.
The oil contributes to inflammation in our bodies as well as weight gain. Most of the oils have been genetically modified as well as contain a mixture of other oils including palm, soy, canola and cottonseed. Commercially produced vegetable oils are derived using solvents rather than by cold pressing techniques. The oils have probably been hydrogenated, fractionated as well been processed further to prolong their shelf life.
In the blog, Why I Never Consume Vegetable Oils we discuss the danger of these oils further.
Monosodium glutamate is the third ingredient, which is also known as MSG. This is a neurotoxin and consumption of it has been linked to everything from headaches and migraines to liver inflammation, asthma, aches, pains, numbness, tingling and more.
Flavour is also found in stock cubes. This is made in a laboratory from anything up to 48 chemicals. Below is a list of the majority of the chemicals used to make flavourings:
amyl acetate, amyl butyrate, amyl valerate, anethol, anisyl formate, benzyl acetate, benzyl isobutyrate, butyric acid, cinnamyl isobutyrate, cinnamyl valerate, cognac essential oil, diacetyl, dipropyl ketone, ethyl acetate, ethyl amyl ketone, ethyl butyrate, ethyl cinnamate, ethyl heptanoate, ethyle heptylate, ethyl lactate, ethyl methylphenylglycidate, ethyl nitrate, ethyl propionate, ethyl valerate, heliotropin, hydroyphrenyl-2-butanone (10 percent solution in alcohol) alpha ionone, isobutyl anthranilate, isobutyl butyrate, lemon essential oil, maltol, 4-methylacetophenone, methyle anthranilate, methyl benzoate, methyl cinnamate, methyl heptine carbonate, methyl naphthyl ketone, methyl salicylate, mint essential oil, neroli essential oil, nerolin, neryl isobutyrate, orris butter, phenethyl alcohol, rose, rum ether, undecalactone, vanillin and solvent.
As you can see from the list of the top four ingredients mentioned above, there is no mention of meat or vegetables, which homemade broth is made from. The list of ingredients always seems to change too.
Now that you know more about some of the negative health effects that can occur from consuming the ingredients contained in these store-bought stock cubes, perhaps you will think twice before adding them to your own meals.
My advice is to make your own homemade meat stocks and broths and use them as the base for your curries, soups, stews, sauces and gravies. By cooking them from scratch you know exactly what you’re eating and you will be avoiding all of those nasty additives that can be harmful to your health.
If you don’t have time to make your own broth or stock, the great news is Changing Habits have created a range of dehydrated broths in 3 flavours – beef, beef and vegetable, and chicken. These convenient broths will be available very soon!
Dehydrated broth can make a nutritious hot broth drink by mixing a teaspoon of the dehydrated broth into a cup of hot water. It also has many other uses as it can be added to many savoury dishes such as stews, curries, scrambled eggs, sauces, dips, casseroles, meatballs, rissoles, gravies, dukkah and as a marinade mix. It can also be sprinkled over meat and vegetables as well.
Changing Habits Nutritionist & Certified GAPS Practitioner