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Natural Flavors Paleo?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 12, 2013 at 3:14 PM

I bought some Yogi tea called Tahitian Vanilla Hazelnut. It's pretty tasty, but suspiciously so. I was hoping someone would know more about the ingredients such as natural butterscotch flavor, natural vanilla flavor, natural hazelnut flavor, and cinnamon bark oil. I'm particularly curious about natural butterscotch flavor because I know that real butterscotch comes from butter and brown sugar, but could consuming the "natural flavor" or essence/oil extract be harmful?

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on June 13, 2013
at 01:17 AM

In the US, I think that "natural flavorings" actually have to be from a specific list of allowed substances. They can't include MSG or MSG-like stuff (though MSG can be hidden under lots of other names, e.g., hydrolized protein, etc).

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10490)

on June 13, 2013
at 12:48 AM

Totally agree. I don't have any particular objection to beaver anal gland, but I would rather KNOW I'm eating it than to consume it unwittingly. Also agreed on the processing being the problem, not the weird-factor of the source.

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10490)

on June 13, 2013
at 12:46 AM

Not true, MSG is NOT allowed (at least in the US) to be hidden under "natural flavor". Not sure if soy is legally allowed but also not sure if there is any application for it, and even if it were the average "healthy savvy consumer" likes soy and wouldn't have a problem with it. "Literally anything" or even "practically anything" is not an apt description. I would downvote but I'm not wasting a point on a drive-by.

7c09a44d334ef8a8c7c2644b0b7e1383

(279)

on June 12, 2013
at 04:15 PM

I want to know WHO first discovered that a beaver's anal gland was so useful. And delicious.

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3 Answers

3
Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106

(19150)

on June 12, 2013
at 03:33 PM

Yeah, natural flavors are just that - flavors derived from natural sources ... no more no less. The problem is, that "natural vanilla flavor" isn't quite an apt description -- really it's "natural flavor that tastes like vanilla".

Sometimes, natural flavors are pretty much where you should guess they are from: "natural lemon flavor" is from citrus fruits primarily ... it might not always be from lemons, but limonene is pretty much from lemons and citrus.

Sometimes ... well, sometimes it's out there -- castoreum is "natural raspberry flavor" that comes from a beaver's anal gland. "Natural butterscoth flavor" is stearic acid usually. Red coloring from lac beetles. The list can go on and on.

These ingredients are sourced from pretty weird places, but that doesn't make them paleo or not. They are effectively highly processed ingredients, so they lose their paleo-cred.

However, am I going to stop drinking carbonated beaver-anal-gland water on occassion? Nope.

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10490)

on June 13, 2013
at 12:48 AM

Totally agree. I don't have any particular objection to beaver anal gland, but I would rather KNOW I'm eating it than to consume it unwittingly. Also agreed on the processing being the problem, not the weird-factor of the source.

7c09a44d334ef8a8c7c2644b0b7e1383

(279)

on June 12, 2013
at 04:15 PM

I want to know WHO first discovered that a beaver's anal gland was so useful. And delicious.

0
382a4374246d85779599beb120f4cd6e

on June 12, 2013
at 05:19 PM

Natural vanilla flavor is generally pulled from wood. Vanillin is the name of the compound.

-1
04a4f204bc2e589fa30fd31b92944549

(975)

on June 13, 2013
at 12:32 AM

Natural flavor is a huge blanket term for any ingredient the manufacturer doesn't feel like revealing to a health savvy consumer. It could be MSG, soy, literally anything. I used to think it was no big deal till I realized I was getting allergic reactions sometimes.

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10490)

on June 13, 2013
at 12:46 AM

Not true, MSG is NOT allowed (at least in the US) to be hidden under "natural flavor". Not sure if soy is legally allowed but also not sure if there is any application for it, and even if it were the average "healthy savvy consumer" likes soy and wouldn't have a problem with it. "Literally anything" or even "practically anything" is not an apt description. I would downvote but I'm not wasting a point on a drive-by.

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on June 13, 2013
at 01:17 AM

In the US, I think that "natural flavorings" actually have to be from a specific list of allowed substances. They can't include MSG or MSG-like stuff (though MSG can be hidden under lots of other names, e.g., hydrolized protein, etc).

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