Avoid eating these artificial preservatives whenever possible

Food Flash explores the wild world of food news, from the health benefits of red wine to why dark chocolate is actually good for you.

Our favorite foods all have a shelf life, but did you know that many of them are living far beyond their original expiration date?

Thanks to artificial preservatives, fruits, vegetables, meats and dairy products last much longer now than they naturally would, and that is not necessarily good news.

Not all preservatives are bad for you, of course. Humans have been using natural preservatives like salt and sugar for thousands of years to keep food from spoiling,

Be cautious with artificial preservatives, though. According to Healthline, many of them can have harmful effects on your health.

Sulfites, for example, are used to prevent discoloration, but they have been linked to asthma.

Sodium benzoate is found in sodas and used in fermentation, but it’s also considered a carcinogen.

Nitrite, another carcinogen, gives hot dogs their unique red color.

Try avoiding preservatives as much as you can by shopping for organic, fresh and naturally labeled products.

If you enjoyed this story, you might also like reading about how our favorite foods of today have a secret past.

More from In The Know:

We’re sorry to say this fast-food restaurant map is totally fake

This queer-owned brand will make you rethink “women’s clothing”

You can use Sephora Insider points to donate to a Black nonprofit

15 of our favorite retailers that are selling fabric face masks