THE CRAP YOU EAT! LIPTON TEAS
Lipton Green Tea is supposed to be the healthy drink, right? But it's made from mostly the same high-fructose corn syrups, preservatives and junk you find in a cola, and very little green tea.
We wondered about the junk in the Lipton Green Tea while snacking at a mall, and shelling out $2.25 for the privilege of drinking a 20-ounce bottle of the alleged health drink. We were stunned when we read the back label.
What surprised us was "green tea" was the SIXTH ingredient down the list ... not the first, as it should be. Instead, the drink's ingredients start out like a read from a Coca Cola or Pepsi label.
LIPTON'S OWN INGREDIENT LIST
Don't take our word for it (and you never should); read what the Lipton bottle shows:
Water, high fructose corn syrup, natural flavor, citric acid, sodium hexametaphosphate (to protect flavor), green tea, ascorbic acid (to protect flavor), phosphoric acid, potassium sorbate (preserves freshness), potassium cinnamate (preserves freshness), honey, calcium disodium edta (to protect flavor), caramel color, yellow 5, blue 1.
Still don't believe us: → READ IT ON LIPTON'S OWN WEBSITE ←
Now we break down the specific ingredients for you.
Water: It's the main ingredient, obviously. You can't brew tea without water, although we doubt the Lipton stuff is realy brewed.
High-Fructose Corn Syrup: Sugar by any other name, and it tastes even sweeter. Corn syrup is mostly glucose. High-fructose corn syrup is corn syrup treated with amylase and other enzymes, which together help convert glucose into fructose. Amylase, by the way, is found in human spit.
Natural Flavorings: Lipton teas, particularly the flavored ones, have plenty of sweetness to them. But the added "natural flavorings" mean the company has added special ingredients under this "category" so it doesn't have to disclose the specific flavorings.
Citric Acid: Citric Acid is a weak organic acid, and a very common preservative. It's sort of like adding lemon to a recipe to keep it from going bad too fast. In other words, this is a natural ingredient. So, combined with the Green Tea, we're up to ONE natural ingredient so far, and we still haven't found any actual tea.
Sodium Hexametaphosphate: Sodium is salt, and HEX-uh-MET-uh-FAWS-fate is very difficult to prounounce, if you've never seen it. So what the hell is it? Sodium Hexametaphosphate is a complex oxidizer used to string common salt molecules together, and the sodium part is why the Lipton version of green tea has so much salt in it. Hexametaphosphates are more correctly called sodium polymetaphosphates, which are commonly used to bind various citric acids (like the ones found in this drink) and to isolate specific compounds you find in your laundry detergent. So if you can't find any Lipton, ask for Tide, instead.
Green Tea: AHA! THERE IT IS!!! Green tea is just that, tea that is very green. It comes from China, like so much of what is now sold in America. Served in its regular form, it is generally not as appetizing as the Lipton variety, though much healthier and less affected by the monophosphates and bicarbonates and sodium additives. We are now up to TWO natural ingredients.
Image from Wikimedia Commons / Wikipedia.org.
Ascorbic Acid: This is a sugar acid that actually has anti-oxidant properties. In other words, this stuff will actually help boost your body's immune system a little bit, but the fact is it is so far down the list of ingredients means you probably are better off with a multi-vitamin.
Phosphoric Acid: A highly-modified form of the regular, naturally-occuring ortho-phosphoric acid, which doesn't melt until the temperature gets over 108-degrees! So regular ortho-phosphoric acid requires a nice summer day in Las Vegas to melt it sufficiently to put it into a beverage.
Potassium Sorbate: This stuff is a chemically-altered form of sorbic acid that has been modified to extract a potassium salt from the natural compound. It is used as a preservative in alot of foods, including the Lipton Tea. Of course, we all know potassium is delicious and fun when eaten in bananna form, but this is not anything like the oral-fixative one finds in the produce section of the grocery store.
Potassium Cinnamate: This is a chemical bonding agent and preservative that is used in many drinks, and it is also used in the cosmetics industry (we swear this is not made up!). Because Lipton Green Tea already has plenty of salt in it from other ingredients, this particular chemical makes a nice substitute for Sodium Benzoate, another common preservative found in canned foods and beverages.
Honey: WELL, WELL, WELL. Our third natural ingredient has been found. Unadulterated honey comes from bees, and if you didn't know that, you're an idiot.
Calcium Disodium EDTA: In long format, this is Calcium disodium ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid. We are not going to pronounce it for you because it's too f***ing hard. But we can tell you this: EDTA is used in the clothing industry to stop metals from tainting the colors of dyes; it's used in medicine to prevent mercury and lead poisoning; it is known as a common industrial pollutant. It prevents the plastic from getting into the flavor of your drink, but it's polluting effects probably mean that by the time you drink the healthy stuff, it's all been wiped out by the dirty crap. This drink is essentially a tasty water.
Caramel Color: Exactly what it says, caramel color is a caramel-colored food coloring. Duh! It's used in many foods and liquids, including soy sauce.
Yellow 5: The chemical name for this synthetic yellow dye is Tartrazine, probably because it's bitter. Yellow 5 is most common in the food industry, and is found in everything from Corn Flakes to Mountain Dew.
Blue 1: This is also known as Brilliant Blue FCF. It is another synthetic coloring agent that, when combined with Yellow 5, helps make Lipton Green Tea actually look a little green. The reason they need the food coloring is obvious: There's very little damned tea in this drink. But we have to admit, it tastes pretty good.
Lipton Iced Tea is © by Unilever.
TOXIC TEA THAT IS GREEN
What favorite Green Tea is made with chemicals that are part of some of the worst toxic pollutants? Hint: This stuff ain't made in China.
WHO'S GONNA GET LUCKY?
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