Avoiding Sulphites

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Quick Facts:

  • Sulphites are used as a food additive and can also occur naturally in some foods
  • Sulphites can cause allergic like symptoms in some individuals
  • Health Canada includes sulphites as a priority allergen

 

Be Aware:

  • Read ingredient labels every time you buy or eat a product.
  • If you have a severe reaction to sulphites follow the Triple Check rule: once at the store before buying, once when you get home and put it away and again before you serve or eat the product
  • Be careful when purchasing items from outside of Canada, since labelling rules differ between countries.

 

Labelling:

  • In Canada, sulphites are required to be labeled when added as an ingredient or component to food at any level, with a few exceptions. You can visit Health Canada’s website at http://hc-sc.gc.ca for more information.

 

Other Names for Sulphites:

  • Potassium bisulphite
  • Potassium metabisulphite
  • Sodium bisulphate, sodium dithionite, sodium metabisulphite, disodium sulphite
  • Sulfur dioxide
  • Sulphiting agents
  • Sulphurous acid
  • E220, E221, E222, E223, E224, E225, E226, E227, E228 (European names)

 

Possible Sources of Sulphites:

  • Alcoholic/non-alcoholic beer, cider and wine • Apple cider
  • Baked goods
  • Bottled lemon/lime juice/concentrate
  • Canned/frozen fruits/vegetables
  • Cereal, cornmeal, cornstarch, crackers, muesli
  • Condiments
  • Deli meats, hot dogs, sausages
  • Dressings, gravy, pre-made guacamole, sauces, soups, soup mixes
  • Dried fruits and vegetables
  • Dried herbs, spices, teas
  • Fish
  • Fresh grapes
  • Fruit filling, fruit syrup, gelatins, jams, jellies, marmalade, molasses, pectin
  • Fruit and vegetable juices
  • Processed potatoes (such as frozen French fries)
  • Snack foods
  • Soy products
  • Sugar syrups
  • Tomato paste, pulp or purees
  • Vinegars (all types)

 

Non-food Sources of Sulphites:

  • Bottle sanitizing solution for home brewing
  • Certain medications

 


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