Sulfite, A Common Preservative – I’m Sensitive/Allergic, Are You?

I realized I was Sulfite/Sulfate-sensitive or allergic about a year ago. I am not a big drinker so figuring out this allergy took me about 30 years of life. A little over a year ago I was invited out to a winery to meet up with friends and then BAM!, I got an instant headache and my fibromyalgia went into a crazy flare after the wine wore off! This, however annoying, finally gave confirmation to me that I couldn’t drink wine. Well, at least regular wine. Sulfites are added as a preservative to 95% of wines. And apparently sulfites are added to lots of bottled alcoholic drinks, not just wine. Le sigh! Organic wine supposedly only contains natural occurring sulfites, with none added. I haven’t tried a organic version yet to see. That is OK though. I’ve never been a big drinker and since I am going AIP Paleo it doesn’t matter to me anymore. Maybe many months from now I can try an organic wine. Oh and if anyone is curious, Stella Artois makes a hard apple cider (Cidre) that is sulfite free. I had to read every hard cider bottle out there to find that out. Anything Mikes Hard (insert your choice) or Bud Light Margarita, etc, contains sulfites.

Back in October of 2013, I printed out the FDA guide to food and drugs containing sulfites. Remember to ALWAYS read your ingredient list on the products label. Here is that list:

Alcoholic beverages: beer, wine, cocktail mixes, wine coolers; Baked Goods: cookies, crackers, pie crust, pizza crust, flour tortillas; Condiments and Relishes: horseradish, onion and pickle relishes, pickles, olives, salad dressing mixes, wine vinegar; Fish and Shellfish: canned clams, shrimp, frozen lobster, scallops, dried cod; Puddings, Gelatin, and Fillings: fruit fillings, flavored and unflavored gelatin, pectin jelling agents; Grain products and Pasta: cornstarch, modified food starch, spinach pasta, gravies, hominy, breading, batters, noodle/rice mixes; Jams and Jellies; Shredded Coconut; Fruit: canned, bottled or frozen fruit juices, dried fruit, maraschino cherries and glazed fruit; Processed Vegetables: veggie juice, canned veggies, pickled veggies, dried veggies, instant mashed potatoes, frozen potatoes, potato salads; Snack Foods: dried fruit snacks, trail mixes, filled crackers; Soup and Soup Mixes: canned seafood soups, dried soup mixes; Sweet Sauces and Toppings: corn syrup, maple syrup, fruit toppings, pancake syrup; Tea: instant teas, liquid tea concentrates.

That is a lot of products that contain sulfites! Remember to always check your labels like I do. Also look for these names: Potassium Bisulfite, Potassium Metabisulfite, Sodium Metabisulfite, Sodium Sulfite, Sulfur Dioxide (usually in dried fruit), and Sodium Bisulfite. While your looking at the label, don’t forget to look for added nitrates. Good Luck! The food industry has really tried hard to sneak in nasty chemicals to preserve foods. I cannot wait to start my Whole30 AIP Paleo program and kick all this nasty, disease causing crap out the door!


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