Watch Your Labels with Lime Juice

My husband loves Mexican food.  He will often use lime juice in making his food.  So instead of buying the actual limes, he picked up a bottle of this.  This was actually bought at our local health food store Sprouts.


I noticed in the fridge and I immediately looked at the label – mainly out of curiosity.  I was very surprised at what I found!


All I expected was maybe lime juice concentrate.  Sodium Bisulfite is a food additive that can cause reactions in those sensitive to it.  According to Livestrong, “The U.S. Food and Drug Administration considers sodium bisulfite to be safe – when used in accordance with good manufacturing practice. It is not allowed to be used on fresh produce intended to be served raw, or in any meat or other food that contains vitamin B1”  This strict regulation was called for after the FDA investigated 13 deaths and 500 reactions in those who were allergic.  Wow.  Makes me want to think twice before ever using this.  According to Natural News, “Sodium benzoate chokes out your body’s nutrients at the DNA cellular level by depriving mitochondria cells of oxygen, sometimes completely shutting them down. Just as humans need oxygen to breathe, cells need oxygen to function properly and to fight off infection, including cancer.”  In even more harmful news, If sodium benzoate is combined with vitamin C, it can cause a chemical reaction that causes benzene to be formed.  Benzene is a known carcinogen.  This is supposed to be just lime juice!  From now on, he is only going to use real limes.  Another thing to note, I looked at the lime juice label at Target and it did not contain these additives.  So if you need to buy lime juice instead of limes, you can try theirs.  The main message of this post is make sure to read all labels!


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31 thoughts to “Watch Your Labels with Lime Juice”

  1. I have to say I have gotten in a hurry when i shop and I've become addicted to my new fav phone app. I scan just about everything with it. And yes I know its better to take the time to read the labels, but im in such a hurry most days, so I scan it with my Fooducate app. And for cases you think should be safe, and my app tells me otherwise :)
    1. I have never heard of Fooducate but I am gonna download now. I am new to trying to be very aware of what is in the food I buy but there are so many different ingredients that I just don't know what is okay. I am reading labels and find I am so confused and try hard to stick with less ingredients but it gets hard to find even those sometimes
      1. I have started using the pronunciation method, if I can't easily pronounce a word in the ingredients, I don't usually eat it. For the most part this works pretty well. And it's surprising what you find where, I had some (what I thought was) apple cider vinegar. I looked at the ingredients and it was distilled vinegar, natural flavoring and caramel coloring! No apple cider! Also keep in mind, "natural flavoring" could be many things we wouldn't normally consider "natural", at least in our food.
        1. That is a great method. I know. So sad we need to be such detectives. I once found a bottle or mirin (Japanese cooking wine) that was mostly made up of corn syrup! We are seriously getting duped in the country.
  2. This is upsetting. I have been trying to live the eat clean/whole food lifestyle for a few months now, and thought I was doing pretty well. However, this is a product I use regularly! I'm usually vigilant in reading labels, but I've always thought there could be no harm in lime juice! Lesson learned; read ALL labels!
    1. I don't think you are alone in this one. Most people, myself included, don't think to read a label on such a simple food. Shame on them for putting this junk in there.
  3. Wow! Incredibly awful. I am having such a hard time being a good mom these days. Sometimes I don't read labels and other days, I don't know what some of the ingredients actually are! I had no idea what these were that you posted. Why is this all so hard and why is the FDA and the food companies doing things like this. I am trying to be vegan. My husband and kids are meat eaters and don't give too much of a care about nutrition. I feel like I am fighting a huge uphill battle and am often on the losing end. I LOVE your is inspiring to me very much! I just wished my family would feel the same :(
    1. It is hard and very frustrating! It makes me so angry. I really feel like Americans are slowly staring to get sick of the junk in our food supply. As far as your family goes, just try to introduce small changes instead of everything at once. My kids still give me a hard time with certain foods. I wrote about this subject. Maybe it can help you.
      1. Thank you! I am going to read it right now!! Your family is so blessed to have you :) Now you should to write an article called "Convincing the unmotivated and stubborn husband" : /
        1. I did write one on that too. I hope it can help. :)
  4. It's crazy how almost everything packaged has some sort of weird additive(s) in it. Ingredient lists scare me sometimes. When I do buy certain packaged foods (crackers, dark chocolate, etc.) I always make sure I know, like actually KNOW, what the ingredients listed are. Otherwise, I always prefer to buy the actual ingredients themselves (limes, for example). Health reasons aside, this usually makes the food taste better as well! I'm glad you decided to take a look at that label! Every little avoidance of crappy ingredients is a step closer to health. :)
  5. WOW! Thank you so much for sharing this valuable information. I typically don't buy this "short-cut" but from now on I will make sure I don't buy it. A person is always better off using fresh even if it does take a little bit longer to prepare your food. Thank you again.
  6. i have not seen that product in mexico, and we use green lemons and not lime juice (thats another thing) and its used for tacos or some soups etc. Dont confuse the green lemon with the sweet big yellow lemon that its very common in the USA
  7. I just learned how to can tomatoes this past weekend. The canning instructions call for the use of fake lemon juice (because the pH of real lemons can vary and you want to make sure it is acidic enough). I cringed and reluctantly gave in, since a friend was teaching me and I didn't want to be rude! Do you can? Have you used real lemon juice with success?
    1. I haven't tried canning yet. If you need to use lemon/lime juice, Target had a brand that didn't have the additives.
  8. Its the same but not so big, its not sweet but acid, and not so bitter like the lime.....
  9. I have to say, you're kind of "special" if this surprises you. It shocks you that the liquid that they put in a plastic container that can sit on a shelf in a grocery store forever isn't pure lime juice? Next, you'll be telling me that there are additives in bologna and hotdogs! You want pure lime juice? Juice a lime. Otherwise, use the stuff in the bottles and know that small amounts probably won't hurt you.
  10. I never use bottled lime juice or lemon juice. I always use fresh ones. Juicing a lemon is not that hard. I already set aside the time to cook and prepare, why not just spare a few minutes to juice a lemon or two? I come from a culture where most food should be fresh and unprocessed. Eating and drinking in the U.S. is a challenge for me. My family was shocked when I told them about the frozen food isles and fast food popularity. I have food allergies and intolerance. Therefore I have to read labels and dig deeper. Being sick or feel pain for several hours or a night is definitely unpleasant. The only way so far I have learned is to abstain from processed food as much as possible. I don't want to trigger anything. I like your posts revealing the facts often neglected by consumers. We really need to pay more attention.
    1. Thank you! You are right to abstain from processed foods. I am sure your body thanks you for it. I wish more people took on that mentality.
  11. If only i had read this article before I went to the store today! I went and bought two big bottles of lime juice and lemon juice, I just looked and they have that!
  12. A big Thank You! First, I started green juicing 18 months ago as a way to reinforce my compromised immune system ... I'm not only a melanoma survivor (2003) but I live with sarcoidosis since 2008. I chose a vegetarian, whole foods, high antioxidant food style in August 2011 and have been much stronger. Green juicing, however, has improved my life even more and given me a better chance of fighting off intrusions. Yes, I still struggle on occasion (like with the current high pollen count) but can fight back quicker. I was using bottled lemon juice in my green juices for vitamin C and for the life support value. When I read your blog post, I went ballistic! I'm so pissed off at the food industry and the FDA. I'd been so careful, eating selectively, and this supposedly pure juice could easily reverse all the good I'd done. Here I was, chugging it in my health booster every day! I immediately purged my pantry and fridge and only used fresh citrus in my juicing since. I read this post when you first released it in June 2013. But, I feel neglectful in never thanking you for exposing it. So, THANK YOU a million times for providing me with more control in my foods. P.S. I use LiveStrong as my go-to resource as well.

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