Amino acids are your body’s building blocks, and while they can be good for your health, not all amino acids are created equal. L-Cysteine – an amino acid used to prolong shelf-life in products such as commercial bread – can be found in duck and chicken feathers and cow horns, but most that’s used in food comes from human hair. It has been reported that most of the hair used to make L-Cysteine comes from China, where it’s gathered from barbershops and hair salons. You can avoid L-Cysteine by buying fresh bread from a local baker, as it is not an additive in flour. Steer clear of fast food places such as McDonald’s, Dunkin’ Donuts and Burger King too, who all use L-Cysteine as an additive.
Another article in Prevention Magazine on-line reports at one time companies ares still using human hair, duck and other animal feathers as a source for L-Cysteine.
The VRG recently surveyed food ingredient manufacturers and suppliers as well as bread and bagel companies to find out if the animal sources of the common amino acid dough conditioner and human and pet food reaction flavor used to make flavor enhancers, L-cysteine, were still dominant in the marketplace as they were in 2007 when we last reported on L-cysteine. The answer was a resounding “yes.” Click here to read the full article…
So if a human hair grosses you out when it shows up in your food at a restaurant, know that you are eating it when you eat commercial breads! Just one more reason to go Paleo!