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Why Subway Can’t Use “Eat Fresh”


Subway was marketed as the healthy alternative to fast food restaurants while I was growing up. I don’t know if this is still true, but if walnuts can’t claim omega-3 benefits and need to be labeled as a drug to make health claims, then Subway can’t use “Eat Fresh.”

Let’s breakdown the fresh ingredients that give a uniform, unmistakable smell when you walk by.

Eat Fresh

“The first step is you have to pick up your bread, and by that, they mean the color of your bread. ‘Cause it all tastes the same.” – Jim Gaffigan 

Let’s take a look at the ingredients in the bread from Subway:

9-GRAIN WHEAT Enriched wheat flour (wheat flour, malted barley flour, niacin, iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), water, yeast, whole wheat flour, sugar, contains 2% or less of the following: wheat gluten, oat fiber, soybean oil, wheat bran, salt, wheat, rye, yellow corn, oats, triticale, brown rice, barley, flaxseed, millet, sorghum, yeast nutrients (calcium carbonate, calcium sulfate, ammonium sulfate), vitamin D2, dough conditioners (DATEM, sodium stearoyl lactylate, potassium iodate, ascorbic acid, azodicarbonamide), caramel color, refinery syrup, honey, yeast extract, natural flavor, enzymes. Contains wheat. 

That does not look like the handful of ingredients it takes to make bread. You will need to head to the lab to make bread like this. If you haven’t heard of azodiocarbonamide, you should so you can avoid it. Azodiocarbonamide is a chemical that is used for foamed plastics, but twilights as a food additive and flour bleaching agent. It is banned in most European countries, Austraila and in Singapore there is actually a hefty fine for putting it in foods. I have also read that is also classified as a respiratory sensitizer leading to asthma.

But they make sourdough you say? No, this is not real sourdough. As you may have read on the PaleoEdge diet principles, you want to avoid sourdough breads that are made with packeted yeast, not truly fermented to reduce gluten content, and I don’t care if something is granted GRAS by the FDA, should not contain ammonium sulfate, potassium iodated and azodicarbonamide.

SOURDOUGH BREAD Enriched flour (wheat flour, malted barley flour, naiacin, iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), water, yeast, sugar, wheat gluten, contains 2% or less of :soybean oil, salt, dextrose, fumaric acid, sodium stearoyl lactylate (dough conditionaer), DATEM, sodium diacetate, calcium sulfate, lactic acid, ammonium sulfate, ascorbic acid, enzymes, potassium iodated, azodicarbonamide, wheat starch, dextrin. 

Eat Fresh Meat and Vegetables at Subway?

What about the meat and vegetables? I will give it to Subway, they aren’t hiding anything with their ingredients. Not only is the source of the meat from factory farms, but will you find corn syrup, sugar, “chicken type flavor,” (hydrolyzed corn gluten, autolyzed yeast extract, thiamine hydrochloride, disodium inosinate and disodium guanylate) because apparently the chicken doesn’t taste like chicken. Also they throw in some soy protein concentrate, artificial flavors, ok I think we can stop there.

The most disturbing part of the vegetables is that they may be preserved by sodium benzoate, yellow #5, natural flavors and polysorbate 80, depending on the vegetable. When sodium benzoate combines with vitamin C it produces benzene, known to cause cancer. Who knows how old these are before they go on your sandwich? This is like Weekend at Bernies for vegetables. Walk past both of these chains, into your nearest health food store, and stock up on real meat, vegetables and sourdough bread for to truly eat fresh.

2 Responses to Why Subway Can’t Use “Eat Fresh”

  • Hi Alex,
    It’s been to long since we visited .
    I love your ambition !
    All of your knowledge for healthy eating has inspired me and my family .
    Thank you for the passion of following your heart.
    Blessings Heidi Figge

  • Hey Heidi! Thank you for the kind comments. It has been too long. I hope you guys are doing well. Feel free to reach out anytime, I always enjoy talking with you.

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