What's in a nugget

I stumbled across this little nugget *ahem* while looking for a weather forecast. 

What's in Fast Food Chicken? (Hint: It’s NOT Chicken)
Shilo Urban

The blatant lie in the title, 'It's not chicken', lays bare the bias that is to follow in the article.
Frying chicken is fairly simple, if a little messy. You dip pieces of chicken into a mix of egg and milk, roll them around in flour and spices, then cook the chicken in sizzling hot oil until the pieces are brown, crispy and delicious.
Sounds good, but this ain't no cookery course.
But wait! Don’t forget to add a dash of dimethylpolysiloxane, an anti-foaming agent made of silicone that is also used in Silly Putty and cosmetics.
Oh no! A chemical with a long name that's used in cosmetics? Well that simply must be bad for us?
Not according to the World Heath Organisation who have studied it in depth.
This compound has been evaluated for acceptable daily intake by
    the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (see Annex 1,
    Ref. No. 20) in 1969.
What other horrors have we in a nugget?
Now add a heaping spoonful of tertiary butylhydroquinone (TBHQ), which is a chemical preservative and a form of butane (AKA lighter fluid). One gram of TBHQ can cause “nausea, vomiting, ringing in the ears, delirium, a sense of suffocation, and collapse," according to A Consumer’s Dictionary of Food Additives. Five grams of TBHQ can kill you.
Yes it can do all those dreadful things, however it constitutes 0.02% of the fats it is added to, not a 'heaped spoonful'.
TBHQ is a highly effective antioxidant.[1] In foods, it is used as a preservative for unsaturated vegetable oils and many edible animal fats.[2] It does not cause discoloration even in the presence of iron, and does not change flavor or odor of the material to which it is added.[1] It can be combined with other preservatives such as butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA). As a food additive, its E number is E319. It is added to a wide range of foods, with the highest limit (1000 mg/kg) permitted for frozen fish and fish products. Its primary advantage is enhancing storage life.
Oohh Deadly
Sprinkle on thirteen other corn-derived ingredients, and you're only about twenty shy as many ingredients as a single chicken nugget from McDonald’s. And you were using pulverized chicken skin and mechanically reclaimed meat for your chicken, right?
However chicken only accounts for about 50% of a Chicken McNugget. The other 50% includes a large percentage of corn derivatives, sugars, leavening agents and other completely synthetic ingredients, meaning that parts of the nugget do not come from a field or farm at all. They come from a petroleum plant. Hungry?
I'm sure all those chemicals are just as horrid as the two you have already named. As for mechanically reclaimed meat and all those other ingredients, the basic fact of the matter is, they are all edible. They are also harmless. You would make yourself ill if you lived on a diet of chicken nuggets, but that's the same of any foods.

I have had veggies say to me, "You do realise you are eating animal flesh?". My response is that calling it animal flesh or pig anus or whatever, does not make it any less edible, safe or tasty. Neither does it put me off my food because I am well aware of where the meat on the supermarket shelf comes from.

Most people these days are aware of the crap that is in a chicken nugget. Many would choose not to eat them. Personally I think they taste gorgeous, and from time to time I will grab a bag from Iceland. Telling me that they contain all these hard to pronounce chemicals will not put me off as long as they are safe and edible and as long as a nugget continues to make my mouth water.
No one in his or her right mind would cook chicken like this. Yet every day, hoards of Americans consume these ingredients in Chicken McNuggets, which McDonalds claims are “made with white meat, wrapped up in a crisp tempura batter.”
That's their choice, is it not?
Scariest perhaps is the fact that this recipe is a new and improved, “healthier” Chicken McNugget launched in 2003 after a federal judge called the deep-fried poultry bites “a McFrankenstein creation of various elements not utilized by the home cook.” 
There are many and varied ingredients used in fast food or off the shelf meals that we would not use to cook with at home. The main reason for this is that we have no need to preserve our home cooked food. We cook it and consume it while it is still warm.
Also terrifying is the fact that these McFrankenuggets are overwhelmingly marketed to children who love their fun shapes and kid-friendly size.
Marketed with children in mind they may be, but children do not have any money. Parents buy food for children and it is up to the parents to give their kids a proper diet. Food such as chicken nuggets can be eaten as part of a varied diet with no problems. That's hardly terrifying is it?
Eating fast food is a habit, but it is one that you can break? No doubt you rarely plan to have a delicious meal at Arby’s for dinner, a lingering lunch at Carl’s Jr. or a special breakfast at the Burger King in the airport. It just happens. You are late, tired, hungry, broke, or all of the above. You have no time, and you must find something to eat before you crash. All of a sudden a bright, friendly sign beckons from the side of the road: Drive-through!
I do plan a delicious meal from McDonalds every now and then. I tend to eat roughly one take away meal per week, be it a kebab, fish and chips or a pile of McDonalds burgers (One is never enough). For those people who use fast for in the way it was intended, buying a quick and filling meal while on the go, how lucky they are to have people like you who try to take that option from them for their own good.
In five minutes you are happily chowing down on an inexpensive, filling meal. But don’t be fooled – the true cost of fast food does not come out of your wallet, but out of your body, your health, and your years on this earth.
Only if every day is fast food day. Most of us just use fast food as an occasional treat, and I would like to continue to do so, thank you very much.
You can break the unhealthy fast food habit: educate yourself about the true ingredients of fast food items, plan ahead for your meals, carry healthy snacks like nuts to ward off hunger and cook healthy chicken recipes at home. Convince yourself that fast food is the most disgusting stuff on the planet and is harmful to you and to those you love. After reading this, that shouldn’t be too hard.
You were doing so well. You started off with a few words of good advice but turned sour. Fast food is far from disgusting. The examples you have used of 'deadly' ingredients would not put anyone with a bit of nouse off eating them.

Fast food, like all things, should be enjoyed in moderation.
Full ingredient list for a Chicken McNugget (from McDonald’s website):

White boneless chicken, water, food starch-modified, salt, seasoning (autolyzed yeast extract, salt, wheat starch, natural flavoring (botanical source), safflower oil, dextrose, citric acid, rosemary), sodium phosphates, seasoning (canola oil, mono- and diglycerides, extractives of rosemary). Battered and breaded with: water, enriched flour (bleached wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamin mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), yellow corn flour, food starch-modified, salt, leavening (baking soda, sodium acid pyrophosphate, sodium aluminum phosphate, monocalcium phosphate, calcium lactate), spices, wheat starch, whey, corn starch. Prepared in vegetable oil (Canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil, hydrogenated soybean oil with TBHQ and citric acid added to preserve freshness). Dimethylpolysiloxane added as an antifoaming agent.
 Read the ingredients of any canned or packet food in your cupboards and see how many of them items you spot. The vitamins and minerals in that list can be found on the side of any cornflakes packet.


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