Monday, 31 August 2015

Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Recipe | Breakfast | Dairy-Free | Vegan

I'm on an oatmeal kick these days. I like to switch up ingredients every morning, and today's breakfast was too good not to share!

It's hearty, nutritious and if you like apple pie, this is right up your alley!

Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Recipe

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5-10 minutes
Servings: 1

  • 1 Pink Lady apple
  • 1 cup rolled (or steel cut) oats
  • 1 cup water + add (optional) more before adding apples 
  • 1 tablespoon ground flax seed
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
  • ground cinnamon

  1. Bring 1 cup of water to a boil and add oats. Stir and cook the oats according to instructions. I used rolled oats, so reduced the heat to low as it takes quicker to cook.
  2. When the oats begin to thicken, grate half the apple into the oats and add water according to preference.
  3. Add cinnamon, flax seeds and coconut sugar and stir.
  4. Chop the rest of the apple and add to the mixture.
  5. Cook oats until done.

502 calories 

If you would like to see another oatmeal recipe, click here!

Happy cooking!

Saturday, 29 August 2015

6 Home made Lip Balm Hacks

If you've run out of lip balm or want to make your own chapstick at home, not only is it simple, but you can decide what exactly goes in. Here are five tips and recipes that will keep your lips nourished and plump all winter (and summer) long!

Coconut Oil
If you live in a colder country, this is as close as you can get to nature's lip balm, at least in appearance. Solid at room temperature (or in winter, where I live), you can heat this up, pour it in a small tub and you're ready to go! You could also add other oils and well as plant derived wax like soy if you want a harder consistency.

Olive oil or avocado oil
The easiest way to moisturise your lips. I prefer avocado oil, which is thinner and seems to absorb easier.

Lucas Paw Paw Ointment
An Aussie favourite, this is something that is my current lip balm of choice. It's meant to be used for burns, insect bites, sunburn, and rashes, but it coincidentally makes a great lip balm (as well as gloss!). If you have chapped lips, wear this overnight and your lips will be healed. For real.

Lip Plumpers
If you want to add a somewhat natural 'plumper' into your lip balm recipe, add a little (and I mean little!)  peppermint oil. If you notice some store bought lip balms or stains have a mint taste, that is because that is the ingredient they use for that plumping effect . I only suggest these if you do not have sensitive skin, because they work by slightly irritating your skin, and thus resulting in inflammation.

Here's a quick recipe for a natural tinted lip balm I like to use:

2 Tablespoons of Coconut Oil
1 Teaspoon of Avocado Oil
1-2 Drops of Pink Food Colouring or Beetroot colouring
1 drop of Vanilla Extract
1-2 Tablespoons of Shea Butter (if you prefer a more solid consistency)

Tip: You could also add food colouring to any clear lip balm you have for an instant tint of your choice!

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Chemical Exfoliation | Part IV | Necessity or Long term damage?

A few weeks ago, I was questioning whether I (and many others) were over-exfoliating (Part I). I looked at how it all began; from Cleopatra bathing in donkeys' milk to over-the-counter retinol (see Part II). Part III explored the various exfoliants used, the difference between AHAs and BHAs and how they functioned.

The current mindset is "How do I look the best instantly?" And the answer is to peel your skin in some form or another. The largest segments in the skincare market targets acne and anti-ageing.

Here are the usual solutions to these 'problems':
  • Anti-ageing: exfoliating toners, glycolic acid, chemical peels, microdermabrasion
  • Acne: retinol, salicylic acid, peels, benzol peroxide
Basically, peel, peel peel...

When we exfoliate, our skin looks brighter, less dull and smooth. Exfoliating doesn't come with its disadvantages though:
  • increased skin photosensitivity to UV light 
  • redness, blotchy skin, erhthema, a sign of...
  • inflammation
  • hyperpigmentation
  • thinning skin

Photo^ by hotelcostacalero licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

So, instead of causing short term damage for immediate results, I think we should shift our focus to skincare that targets repair and skin health.

I think it's also important to stop over-exfoliating. Many cleanser and toners, and even lotions contain acids that exfoliate our skin, so we might be overstimulating our skin on a daily basis without even realising. Ingredients like alcohol and propylene glycol are also used in some products as penetration enhancers. They usually work by disrupting and dissolving the barrier our skin naturally produces to keep it healthy. And really, isn't that barrier there for a reason?

Here are some changes I've made since starting this series:
  • exfoliate with glycolic acid less, from a couple of times a week to once a week
  • transition from glycolic acid, which is stronger, to lactic or mandelic acid, which absorbs at a slower rate than glycolic (see bibliography), thereby causing less irritation and damage
  • if you have acne, look at a more holistic way to treat acne, my trigger was dairy 
  • look into more innovative anti-ageing products like copper peptides

So to end this series, I still will and do exfoliate. Only chemically, and definitely not as often as I used to.

Photo^ Talaso & Spa Masaje/Facial/Massage


Rizza, L. et al. 'Comparative In Vivo Study Of The Efficacy And Tolerance Of Exfoliating Agents Using Reflectance Spectrophotometric Methods'. International Journal of Cosmetic Science 32.6 (2010): 472-472. Web.

Monday, 24 August 2015

Tea for Skin: Cinnamon Tea (2)

Here's another segment of Tea for Skin where I share the benefits of drinking a hot beverage for better skin (and coincidentally overall health)! If you missed the first one, click here.

Sweet, spicy and aromatic, pure or blended cinnamon tea not has not only been used as a sweetener and spice, but also as medicine. I love cinnamon tea, as well as adding ground cinnamon into breakfast, smoothies and desserts. I ground up cinnamon bark using a coffee grinder. Here I talk about 'true' cinnamon, Cinnamomum Zeylanicum, and not cassia, which is the spice that is usually used commercially and produced cheaply, and does not contain the same health benefits.

'Cinnamon Sticks' by trophygeek licensed under CC BY 2.0

Here are some health benefits of cinnamon that I think aid in maintaining healthy skin:

Promotes Collagen Synthesis
Skin changes as we age, collagen production becomes sluggish and our skin becomes dull. Cinnamon extract has been found to encourage type 1 collagen synthesis¹, which makes up 90% of the collagen in our bodies². Add a dash of cinnamon in your daily latte for and effortless boost of collagen.

Propionibacterium acnes is a bacteria linked to acne³Cinnamon oil, (which is extracted from cinnamon) was found to effective against acne bacteria when tested in-vitro, killing P.acnes after 5 minutes⁴. Cinnamon has also displayed anti-microbial properties.

Antioxidants protect the skin by limiting free radicals, which can cause skin damage, ageing and dullness. There have been many studies on the essential oils obtained from Cinnamomum Zeylanicum which have shown powerful antioxidant activity in vitro⁵. CZ bark extracts were also found to have strong antioxidant and free radical scavenging activity by Prakash et al⁶.

Helps to manage glucose levels and diabetes
Cinnamon is well known to have anti-diabetic properties, reducing blood glucose levels⁷. As I pointed out in my last post, this is great for diabetics and people with insulin problems. It could also be beneficial for skin. Glycation is when a protein or lipid (fat) molecule bonds with a sugar molecule, which in short, damages the functioning of molecules, and thus skin (which is made of of proteins and fats). As it can be propelled by diet, perhaps reducing sugar levels, can help. And sometimes, I hope a late night cinnamon tea will magically counteract some high sugar dessert I have happened to indulge in.

Compounds that have been isolated from cinnamon, like flavonoids and phenols have shown to be great inhibitors of AGEs, which are produced from glycation. Glycation is a huge factor in ageing.

Other ways I like to eat/drink cinnamon:

  • with oatmeal
  • added to tea and soy milk
  • herbal teas, chai tea etc.
  • with apples
  • added to banana ice-cream (blended frozen bananas)
  • in smoothies and blended juices

Bibliography (in order of use)

¹ Takasao, Naoko et al. 'Cinnamon Extract Promotes Type I Collagen Biosynthesis Via Activation Of IGF-I Signaling In Human Dermal Fibroblasts'. J. Agric. Food Chem. 60.5 (2012): 1193-1200. Web.

² Sabiston textbook of surgery board review, 7th edition. Chapter 5 wound healing, question 14

³ Perry, Alexandra, and Peter Lambert. 'Propionibacterium Acnes : Infection Beyond The Skin'. Expert Review of Anti-infective Therapy 9.12 (2011): 1149-1156. Web.

 Zu, Yuangang et al. 'Activities Of Ten Essential Oils Towards Propionibacterium Acnes And PC-3, A-549 And MCF-7 Cancer Cells'. Molecules 15.5 (2010): 3200-3210. Web.

 Chericoni, Silvio et al. 'In Vitro Activity Of The Essential Oil Of Cinnamomum Zeylanicum And Eugenol In Peroxynitrite-Induced Oxidative Processes'. J. Agric. Food Chem. 53.12 (2005): 4762-4765. Web.

⁶ Prakash, Dhan et al. 'Total Phenol, Antioxidant And Free Radical Scavenging Activities Of Some Medicinal Plants'. International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition 58.1 (2007): 18-28. Web.

⁷ Allen, R. W. et al. 'Cinnamon Use In Type 2 Diabetes: An Updated Systematic Review And Meta-Analysis'. The Annals of Family Medicine 11.5 (2013): 452-459. Web.

 Gunawardena, Dhanushka et al. 'Anti-Inflammatory Activity Of Cinnamon (C. Zeylanicum And C. Cassia) Extracts – Identification Of E-Cinnamaldehyde And O-Methoxy Cinnamaldehyde As The Most Potent Bioactive Compounds'. Food Funct. 6.3 (2015): 910-919. Web.

*I am not a medial profession, just a tea-guzzling, medical-journal-reading nerd

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Sukin Foaming Facial Cleanser Review

It's been a while since I did a skincare review, so here are my thoughts on a cleanser from Sukin. I purchased this cleanser a while ago, to use after removing makeup with oil. Another cleansing experiment I was doing at time, and even though I had vowed never to use foaming cleansers for life, I did because:
  1. there were no sulphates
  2. it said 'lightly' foaming
I've also done a review on their sensitive skin moisturiser, click here to see it. 
  • Lightly foaming 
  • sulphate and paraben free
  • gentle, non drying cleanser to remove impurities 
  • leaves skin feeling soft, clear and clean
  • contains chamomile, aloe vera, witch hazel and green tea with macadamia and evening primrose oils to purify and balance your skin
  • Suitable for all skin types especially oily, sensitive and combination


Aqua, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Cocoamidopropyl Betaine, Decyl Glucoside, PEG-150 Pentaerythrityl Tetrastearate, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract (Chamomile), Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract (Green Tea), Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Extract, Glycerin,Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil (Rose Hip) Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Oil, Phenoxyethanol, Benzyl Alcohol, Citrus Tangerina (Tangerine) Peel Oil, Citrus Nobilis (Mandarin Orange) Peel Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract  (Lavender), Vanillin, Vanilla Planifolia Extract, Citric Acid, Linalool,* Limonene.* 
* Natural component of essential oils.

Cocoamidopropyl Betaine: synthetic surfacant, foam booster - can be irritating to some
Decyl Glucoside: glucose-based surfactant, with a high pH (skin pH is lower)
PEG-150 Pentaerythrityl Tetrastearate: thickening agent
Phenoxyethanol: preservative, fragrance. Europe Union classifies as an irritant
Benzyl Alcohol: preservative, can be irritating and an allergen
Essential Oils

  • no animal testing - 100% cruelty free company
  • vegan
  • carbon Neutral 
  • recyclable Packaging
  • grey water safe

  • smells lovely- like oranges and vanilla
  • does not contain SLS, contains more 'natural' ingredients and extracts, like chamomile and green tea
  • budget friendly
  • worked well after using olive oil as a makeup remover
  • a little goes a long way
  • didn't feel like I was cleaning my face with dish washing liquid (the case with most foaming cleansers) = not overly foaming

  • I have normal to slightly oily skin, oilier in the summer, and this can be drying
  • Especially when too much is used

I am a fan of Sukin for their vegan and natural skincare products, but next time I would probably purchase their cream cleanser.

Bibliography,. 'Skin Deep® Cosmetics Database | EWG'. N.p., 2015.

Sunday, 16 August 2015

5 Reasons why Dairy Causes Acne

Continuing from my last post, here are more research-based reasons why dairy is linked to acne. If you have problematic skin, consider going dairy free. It cured me.

People seem to believe one of two things about the cause of acne. Either, diet has nothing to do with acne, and it all boils down to genetics and age. Or, that chocolate and fried foods give you spots. Those people also include doctors. Antibiotics, anyone? In recent years, there have been more studies involving how acne develops. Here are a few reasons why I think dairy causes acne. And, not just me, the dermatological world might just have to finally admit it.

Dairy contains hormones

Cow's milk comes from a pregnant or lactating animal, where milk is needed for a calf to grow 
and put on an immense amount weight. Milk contains anabolic steroids, growth hormones and growth factors¹. This doesn't include the added hormones from the dairy industry. The average person isn't drinking "organic, hormone-free" milk, and even if they were, they would still be ingesting a natural hormonal cocktail.

'got milk' by Jenny Downing licensed under CC BY 2.0

Western Diet

Epidemiological studies have shown evidence that acne vulgaris is significantly lower in non-westernised communities². This study involved Kitavan Islanders who ate a diet of root vegetables, fruits and little fish, with negligible Western food³, including dairy and meat. They had little to no acne.

A 2005 study on teenage acne also showed a positive correlation with high school milk consumption⁴.

Insulin-like Growth Factor or IGF-1

IGF-1 is a hormone that we naturally synthesise and is important in growth; our highest levels are at puberty.When dairy products are consumed, IGF-1 is produced, where it stimulates sebaceous glands as well as androgen production (male sex hormones) which in turn triggers acne⁶.


Dairy raises inflammation in the body⁷ and as acne is an inflammatory disease, it would probably be a good idea to ditch the dairy.

Skin is an Organ

What we eat, is what we wear. Our skin is an organ that eliminates toxins from our body. Whatever is going  on inside our bodies may be showing up in our skin.

To end, here's one of my favourite quotes about health:

“Let food be your medicine and let medicine be your food.” Hippocrates, founder of modern medicine.  


Danby, F. William. 'Nutrition And Acne'. Clinics in Dermatology 28.6 (2010): 598-604. Web.

2 Cordain, Loren et al. 'Acne Vulgaris'. Arch Dermatol 138.12 (2002): n. pag. Web.

3 Guyenet, Stephan. 'Whole Health Source: Interview With A Kitavan'. N.p., 2010. Web. 

Adebamowo, Clement A. et al. 'High School Dietary Dairy Intake And Teenage Acne'. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology 52.2 (2005): 207-214. Web.

5 Smith TM, Gilliland K, Clawson GA, Thiboutot D. IGF-1 induces SREBP-1 expression and lipogenesis in SEB-1 sebocytes via activation of the phospho-inositide 3-kinase/Akt pathway. J Invest Dermatol.2008;128:1286–1293.

Melnik, Bodo C, Swen John, and Gerd Schmitz. 'Over-Stimulation Of Insulin/IGF-1 Signaling By Western Diet May Promote Diseases Of Civilization: Lessons Learnt From Laron Syndrome'. Nutrition & Metabolism 8.1 (2011): 41. Web.

Nestel, Paul J. et al. 'Effects Of Low-Fat Or Full-Fat Fermented And Non-Fermented Dairy Foods On Selected Cardiovascular Biomarkers In Overweight Adults'. British Journal of Nutrition 110.12 (2013): 2242-2249. Web.

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

I gave up Dairy and Became Acne Free

When I was 19, I decided to stop drinking milk. I didn't really have a good reason. I never could drink it straight and it was around the time I started getting cystic acne. I had read that milk could be a contributing factor and that it also contained pus... So I switched to soy milk. Yeah, it didn't work. I still had spots. Less, to be honest and some of the redness had subsided, but not enough to be 'cured'. I never switched back to cows' milk though; the taste and smell and the pus. No.

Over the next two years I went on two rounds of antibiotics, which gave me clear skin. Until I came off them. And I was back to square one, but worse. Because now, I also had drier, thinner skin and chapped lips. I'll do a detailed review of the antibiotics I took in a future post. To cut a long story short: don't take them.

All I was doing was treating the symptoms and not the cause. If you take the doctor's route to find a solution to your acne, this is is how they will treat you too. It was around this time that I decided to take a holistic approach to my health, and one of the things I did was become completely dairy free. I did cheat here and there and not read labels sometimes, but overall I wasn't drinking or eating obvious high-dairy foods like yoghurt, ice cream and cheese. If I did waver, and eat some frozen yoghurt, I noticed the next day, in the form of a pimple or two. Coincidence? I think not. This is how I became certain dairy was the culprit.

'got milk?' by Leandro Martinez licensed under CC BY 2.0

I didn't realise how addicted to cheese and ice cream I was until I tried to wean myself off them. After a few weeks, it became easier, and now, I don't miss dairy at all. Not to mention, there are amazing alternatives.

There is no doubt in my mind that there is a huge link between dairy and skin health. I wish I had done this sooner. Within a week, I stopped getting new big red pimples and it's been a few years since then, and I am completely acne and dairy free. I wish I took pictures of when it was at it's worst, but I hated taking photos at the time, and was always wearing foundation when I did. When I find my old phone selfies, I will update though haha!

If you want more rational and research based reasons as to why dairy is linked to acne, stay tuned for my next post! Until then, comment below with what helped you! If you have acne, try going dairy free, you have nothing to lose, except your spots!

xo, Amali.

Sunday, 9 August 2015

DIY Toner | Apple Cider Vinegar | Acne-free Glowing Skin

Although I use, and appreciate slathering on "chemicals" (Yes, I know they are everywhere and not the root of all evil), it is just as simple (and cost effective) to sometimes make your own creative concoctions. It's the closest you can get to actually being a wizard. Or Jessica Alba. I feel like she would do this.

There is a flourishing array of new products emerging in the market, targeting the increasing demand and trend geared towards a more natural skincare routine. Obviously, I'm not alone in wanting to use more products that contain beneficial, nutrient-dense ingredients.

Here, I share with you a simple recipe on the toner that I currently use, with ingredients that you can find from your kitchen pantry.
  1. Apple Cider Vinegar: I use Organic, raw and unfiltered ACV with 'the mother'. I just think it makes sense not to use the filtered variety. 
  2. Water: Spring water, purified or filtered is best. 
I use 1 part ACV to 2 or 3 parts water. If you're starting out or have sensitive skin, you can use a diluted version and work your way up. It took me a few weeks to build up to the ratio that I am using now.

Why I use Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Our skin is acidic, with the natural skin pH of healthy skin to be just under 5¹
  • Most cosmetics, soaps, cleansers and tap water usually have a higher pH² which alters skin properties³ and harms the acid mantle, the protective layer on our skin.
  • ACV has a low pH, and mixing it with water brings it to a level that is closer to healthy skin
  • contains minerals such as calcium, magnesium and potassium
  • has anti-fungal⁵  properties
  • I couldn't find any research to back this up, but there are thousands of anecdotal accounts of people using ACV and seeing skin improvements on review sites.

I use Barnes Naturals Organic ACV (pictured below) and make a small batch every few days, and keep it in a dropper bottle in the fridge.

My Experience

I use this after cleansing and before moisturiser, in the mornings and on some evenings. After using this toner for a few months, I've notice that my skin is smoother, and I don't get the random flare ups that I used to. This has also helped with dry spots during winter. My skin in looking dewier than before, but that could be due to a few other things too (diet, skincare etc.) I definitely enjoy using this natural toner, and haven't experienced any negative side effects.


It smells like vinegar, I mean who would have thought, right? I absolutely can't stand the smell, but you do get somewhat used to it after a while. It definitely doesn't linger on your skin though, and goes away after a few minutes.

Comment below if you have tried this and what DIY tonics you like to use! And if you do give this a go, remember to DILUTE; I'm sure your face won't melt off, but don't risk it ok?

PS. I don't think 'natural' always means better. But when it is, I use it.

Here's another great ACV that I recommend:
Braggs Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar


¹ Lambers, H. et al. 'Natural Skin Surface Ph Is On Average Below 5, Which Is Beneficial For Its Resident Flora'. International Journal of Cosmetic Science 28.5 (2006): 359-370. Web.

² Mukhopadhyay, Partha. 'Cleansers And Their Role In Various Dermatological Disorders'. Indian Journal of Dermatology 56.1 (2011): 2. Web.

³ Moore, David J. et al. 'Ph Induced Alterations In Stratum Corneum Properties'. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology 50.3 (2004): P33. Web

.,. 'Nutrition Facts And Analysis For Vinegar, Cider'. N.p., 2015. Web. 

⁵ Mota, Ana Carolina Loureiro Gama et al. 'Antifungal Activity Of Apple Cider Vinegar On Candida Species Involved In Denture Stomatitis'. Journal of Prosthodontics 24.4 (2014): 296-302. Web. 

Ali, S, and G Yosipovitch. 'Skin Ph: From Basic Science To Basic Skin Care'. Acta Dermato Venereologica 93.3 (2013): 261-267. Web.

Kim, E. et al. 'The Alkaline Ph-Adapted Skin Barrier Is Disrupted Severely By SLS-Induced Irritation'. International Journal of Cosmetic Science 31.4 +
(2009): 263-269. Web

*Amazon link(s) are affiliate links

Thursday, 6 August 2015

5 Food Additives That Will Make You Gag!

After my post about titanium dioxide seemingly in everything from machinery to marshmallows, I wanted to explore what other interesting ingredients were being used to make our food! If you're eating right now. Maybe. Don't.

Animal Skin and Bones

When I was a kid, my favourite dessert was jelly, or jello for all you Americans. If someone had told me it contained boiled down skin, bones, hides and tissues of cows, chicken and pigs, I would have thrown all those pretty packages over the nearest cliff. Gelatin, derived from animal collagen comes from the aftermath of the meat and leather industries.
Found in: jelly/jello, puddings, gummies, marshmallows, cakes, some soups, and even yoghurt, ice cream, capsules and makeup!

  • agar (from algae)
  • pectin (from apples and oranges) and 
  • konjac (Asian vegetable tuber/corm).

Mini Fruit Jellies by Lall licensed under CC BY 2.0

Human hair 
While finding hair in restaurant food isn't my idea of fine dining, I can at least dismiss it as an accident. And never go again. But, at least it's unintentionally, right? Well, if you read the ingredient list of the bread, bagel or pizza you're eating, and it contains L-cysteine, then you've been eating human hair all along. Used as a dough conditioner, it is the cheapest to produce on a mass scale from human hair, animal hair and duck feathers. Bon App├ętit! 
Good news: Food Standards Australia New Zealand do not permit it in bakery products claiming to be wholemeal.
Apparently good news: Canada only permits L-cysteine sourced from goose and duck feathers, not humans, bristles and hooves (other great sources!) 
Also known as: E920, E921

Ground Beetles

Photo (DSC_3336) by mhbishop under CC BY 2.0
The red pigment carmine, is a surprisingly common additive in the food industry and is considered a 'natural' food colouring. Female cochineal insects are either crushed or boiled alive to extract carminic acid, which they naturally produce to ward of predators. Pesticide, anyone?
Found in: carbonated soft drinks, confectionery, cakes, soups, dyed cheeses, strawberry yoghurt, biscuits, lipstick, shampoo. Check your labels folks!

Also goes by: colour 120, E120, cochineal extract, carmine, cochineal carmine, carminic acid, crimson lake, natural red 4 or  C.I. 75470.
Sneaky sneaky.

Candy Lovers

If you're a fan of shiny hard candy, then you're in luck! Instead of eating bugs, you're just eating their secretions! Yay! It's called Shellac and scraped from the bark where it is left behind by Cochineal's cousin, the female Kerria Lacca bug. Actually, you're probably still eating the bugs on said bark. 
Also found in: glazed fruit, pills, coffee beans, gum.
Also called: E904, confectioner's glaze, resinous glaze, pharmaceutical glaze, lac-resin. 

Beaver Butt Juice

Yes, really. Castoreum is secreted from castor sacs which sit comfortably next to the anus of a beaver and are primarily used (in conjunction with urine) to mark territory. 
I don't know what kind of delirious state some poor soul was in when they decided to figure out what beaver butt secretions tastes like, but somehow this substance made it's way into the human food supply. It is used to enhance strawberry or raspberry flavouring and it can be found in the US as 'natural flavouring'. WHY? Wasn't "beaver butt juice" good enough? Oh, but don't worry, FDA says it's safe. Because that's the real issue here. 
Can be found in: candy, perfume (gross) and cigarettes (...)

Photo^ by Bill Damon licensed under CC BY 2.0

If you would like more of these kinds of posts, comment below!

I hope I haven't scarred you for life!

Photo^  Beaver at Forest Grove

Bibliography,. 'Food-Info.Net : E-Numbers : E920 : L-Cysteine'. N.p., 2015. Web.,. 'Additives - E-Numbers: E904, E910, E920, E921, E951, E954, E959, E965, E966'. N.p., 2015.,. 'Food Standards Australia New Zealand'. N.p., 2015. Web.,. 'Ingredient Results - Confectioner's Glaze'. N.p., 2015. Web.

GA, Burdock. 'Safety Assessment Of Castoreum Extract As A Food Ingredient. - Pubmed - NCBI'. N.p., 2015. Web. 6 Aug. 2015.
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