Secrets of the Superhuman Food Pyramid: Negative Effects of Chemically Preserved or Dried Meats

As meat has always been a part of the human diet, various natural methods have been discovered or invented to preserve this type of food. The basic idea is to effectively inhibit the growth and spread of microorganisms thereby giving the meat a considerable shelf life.

Nowadays, when meat and other food products are mass produced, the method that can best keep up with production and consumption demands is the use of chemical preservatives. Such modern meat products are certainly superior to any that’s been cured or dried via natural and traditional techniques – superior in terms of shelf life and uniformity. This advantage however comes at the cost of taking in substances that can potentially harm you.

Continue reading and learn more about the negative effects of chemically preserved or dried meats and why the Superhuman Food Pyramid recommends you avoid them as a source of protein.

Risks of Chemically Preserved or Dried Meats:

Sodium benzoate is a chemical preservative that’s not only been used for meat or poultry but for condiments, beverages, medicines and cosmetics as well. There have been initial studies that this substance in combination with particular food dyes may lead to hyperactivity in children. Another dangerous mix is sodium benzoate and ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), which forms the carcinogenic compound benzene. Given the prevalence of chemical preservatives and additives in processed food, including dried meats, these unhealthy combinations are quite possibly frequent occurrences.

Benzoic acid is a precursor for sodium benzoate but it is also used separately to preserve meat. Although this substance naturally occurs in plants, particularly in fruits like berries, there is still a daily limit for how much one can take in a day before it starts becoming toxic. The established maximum is 5 mg per kilogram of body weight. Unfortunately, despite such standards, a few countries still find some of their dried food products to fail inspection because they contain too much of this chemical preservative. In high enough doses this substance can negatively affect the kidneys and liver.

Propionic acid when bonded with calcium or sodium turns into the preservatives calcium or sodium propionate. There have been reports that these particular compounds can cause gastritis and peptic ulcers. Such chemical preservatives in meat may damage the stomach lining over time and lead to the said unhealthy condition of the digestive system.

These substances used to be prohibited by the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) but regulations have been recently amended. The primary function of these chemical preservatives is to keep meat from spoiling. However, the previous position of the agency was that they could also be used to mask deficiencies in the quality of meat. Food manufacturers get their supply from factory farms, and such meat is known to be cheaper but far less nutritious than the organic, grass-fed and pasture-raised variety. A chemically preserved or dried meat product then is essentially low-grade meat “repaired” with benzoates, propionates and other additives, making them good enough for human consumption.

Individual packages of commercial meat products only have small and safe amounts of these chemical preservatives. They would not pass inspection otherwise. But imagine a diet that consists mostly of such processed food. Such an eating habit can easily lead to an unhealthy accumulation of said preservatives. Unlike plant-based food that’s commonly rich in fiber, animal meat tends to stay longer in the digestive tract.

In the next post, I’ll tell you the negative effects of protein powders with artificial sweeteners and why you should avoid it to succeed in your quest to Become Superhuman.

In the meantime, if you care to jump ahead, here is a complete listing of the protein sources on Superhuman Food Pyramid:


Free Range Eggs (With Yolk)

Grass-Fed Beef, Bison or Buffalo or Lamb

Pasture-Raised, Organic Pork

Sardines, Anchovies or Haddock in Water or Olive Oil

Wild Salmon, Trout, Tilapia or Flounder

Organic Whey/Casein Protein Powder

Organic Rice/Pea Protein Powder

Organic Hemp Protein Powder

• Organic Yogurt (Full-Fat)


Yogurt Cheese

Raw Cheese from Grass Fed Cows

Organic Cottage Cheese

Naturally preserved or dried meats

Miso, tempeh, tamari or natto

Egg protein powder

• Soaked or sprouted beans and legumes

• Raw seeds and nuts

Raw nut butter


Non-Organic Dairy Products

Processed Cheeses

Non-Organic, Commercially Processed Meat

Chemically Preserved or Dried Meats

Protein Powders with Artificial Sweeteners

Textured Vegetable Proteins

Soy Protein Powder


• Roasted Seeds and Nuts

Roasted Nut Butter

• Regular or Canned Beans and Legumes

If you have questions, comments or feedback about the negative effects of chemically preserved or dried meats, the Superhuman Food Pyramid, this website, or other aspects of Becoming Superhuman, then leave your thoughts below, as well as any tips you have on the negative effects of chemically preserved or dried meats.