Direct Eats - Shopping On Direct Eats

SHOPPING ON DIRECT EATS

It's a No-Brainer!

BEST SELECTION

We carry 20,000 better-for-you food and health & beauty products in PANTRY-SIZED portions. Our website is shoppable by 17 different diet and lifestyle filters, such as organic, vegan, GMO-free, paleo, dairy free, low fat, and more, offering something for everyone.

ALWAYS FREE SHIPPING

It’s simple. We offer FREE shipping on all orders, with no minimum cart required, all the time! We currently ship to any location within the contiguous U.S.

NO MEMBERSHIP FEES

You can shop and stock up on all your favorite natural and organic products without having to pay an annual membership fee or commit to a monthly subscription.

The Best
Ingredients

We believe the best ingredients make the best products, so that’s why we don’t sell anything made with ‘the bad stuff.’ We have a set of strict standards that every product sold on our site must meet, and we filter out any products containing harmful or questionable ingredients.

Food & Beverages

We strive to provide you with the highest quality natural and organic products. That’s why you won’t find any artificial colors, flavors, hydrogenated oils, or MSG in the foods we carry. See the full list below for an explanation of why we do not carry each ingredient.

ARTIFICIAL COLORS

Artificial in terms of food means “a substance not duplicated in nature.” There are currently seven artificial (synthetic) coal-tar based dyes on the market. There is evidence that four of the seven being used cause cancer in laboratory animals. The FDA has banned 17 food dyes since 1918 because of their potentially toxic effects. Furthermore, six of the seven being used in the US have been banned in other countries.

Artificial flavors

There are over 2,000 flavorings – 500 are natural (which can be safe) and the rest are synthetic. The synthetic flavors are made from many different chemicals. Some can be toxic to the nervous system, the kidneys, or liver, but because they are usually consumed in small amounts they are relatively safe. There are also “flavor enhancers,” which are substances that seem to bring out or improve the flavors of a food. One example is MSG. As with any synthetic compound, sensitive people can have allergic reactions. Direct Eats is working to ensure all products sold, including sports products eventually, do not have artificial sweeteners.

Artificial sweeteners

Acesulfame K (aka Sweet OneTM or SunetteTM): The FDA approved this artificial sweetener in 1988. Although this substance is on the FDA’s Generally Considered As Safe list, which is a list of additives believed to be harmless, its safety is still in question. The chemical structure of acesulfame K closely resembles that of saccharin, a weak carcinogen. Findings of several studies showed a group of rats fed acesulfame-K developed more tumors than those not fed it. Acesulfame-K was also found to raise the blood cholesterol levels of diabetic rats.

Aspartame (NutrasweetTM): The FDA and CDC (Center for Disease Control) have received more complaints from the use of this substance than any other food additive. Adverse reactions include high blood pressure, headaches, insomnia, ovarian cancer, brain tumor, PKU (Phenylketonuria), seizures, brain damage in fetuses, extreme swelling, throat swelling, allergic effects, and retina deterioration. Keep in mind, these dangerous side effects are worsened when Nutrasweet is heated or used in cooking.

GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) salmon or any other GMO animal/seafood product

No one knows the long-term effects and safety of consuming GMO fish. The few studies that have been conducted on GMO salmon show that it contains fewer vitamins, minerals, and the omega-3 fatty acids, DHA and EPA, than wild or even farmed salmon. Additionally, GMO salmon may be higher in unwanted substances such as insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) and known allergenic proteins. GMO salmon are raised in fish farms that do not resemble salmon’s natural living habitat, and if they ever escaped into our natural waters, there would be detrimental effects on our ecosystem, including corruption of the wild salmon population and damage to the animals that eat salmon as a part of their natural diet. You can shop specifically Non-GMO products of all types in the GMO Free category under Shop Food.

Hydrogenated and/or partially hydrogenated oils

Hydrogenation is a process that takes an unsaturated fat, such as soybean or other vegetable oil, and makes it more solid at room temperature, thus more saturated. A large percentage of the once healthy fats are converted to the trans-configuration, also known as trans-fatty acids. This process changes the molecular shape of these fatty acids, which negatively alters their biological functions. Excess trans-fatty acids can promote increased cholesterol and triglyceride counts, make blood platelets stickier and encourages blood clotting, worsen an essential fatty acid deficiency, interfere with the body’s detoxification system, interfere with insulin receptors, increase inflammation, and negatively impact the immune system.

Irradiated food

This is a process of exposing foods to radioactivity to prolong the shelf life and reduce the risk of bacterial contamination. This process is currently approved for meats, grains, some produce, herbs, and spices. The radioactive rays can cause “off” flavors and textures, reduce vitamins, minerals and enzymes, and create chemical changes. All irradiated foods must be labeled as such, however, products containing irradiated ingredients do not require labeling. Prepared or packaged foods for restaurants, hospitals, or cafeterias are also exempt from labeling. Although you will NOT find irradiated food at Natural Grocers, keep a look out when shopping at other establishments.

MSG (Monosodium glutamate)

MSG is an artificial ingredient that is made up of glutamic acid and sodium. Glutamate is an excitotoxin, which stimulates your brain into thinking what you are eating tastes better than it does. This stimulation is what makes MSG a flavor enhancer. The National Organization Mobilized to Stop Glutamate estimates that one-quarter of the world’s population reacts adversely to MSG. Some possible reactions include headaches, migraines, stomach upset, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, irritable bowel, asthma attacks, shortness of breath, anxiety or panic attacks, heart palpitations, partial paralysis, “heart attack-like symptoms,” balance difficulties, mental confusion, mood swings, skin rashes, runny nose, bags under the eyes, flushing, and mouth lesions. There are some ingredients that may contain MSG by the fact that it can be created during the manufacturing process. Some example ingredients include hydrolyzed vegetable protein, autolyzed yeast, kombu extract, broth, bouillon, stock, flavoring, natural flavoring, natural flavors, and natural chicken flavoring. Therefore, those who are particularly sensitive to MSG may want to avoid these ingredients as well.

Olestra

This synthetic fat is a combination of soybean oil and sucrose. These ingredients are manipulated into molecules too large for the colon to absorb or digest. Therefore, Olestra passes untouched through the digestive system. This product has the potential to replace fat in such foods as chips and crackers. Preliminary studies suggest that Olestra causes tumors in laboratory animals. Olestra interferes with fat-soluble vitamin absorption, which includes vitamin A, E, D, K, Co-Enzyme Q-10, carotenoids, lutein, lycopene, and beta-carotene. Clinical studies have shown that 8 grams per day (equivalent to 16 Olestra containing potato chips) caused dramatic depletion of fat-soluble vitamins within 2 weeks. This fake fat may also cause intestinal cramping, flatulence and loose stool.

Health & Beauty

So many body care products today are formulated with ingredients that are unnatural and even hazardous to your health. We have chosen to carry brands who prioritize natural ingredients and formulas and consider your health, and their impact on the planet and animals. While we work to filter out all harmful ingredients, we have also made Health & Beauty products shoppable by features such as Paraben Free and Cruelty Free so you can shop by what is also important to you.

Antibacterial soaps

Such soaps contain antibacterial agents (such as triclosan) that work like an antibiotic. Researchers are concerned that through the process of natural selection, bacteria that survive exposure to antibacterial agents pass along their resistant genes, making the next generation even tougher to combat. This process is exactly what has happened with medical antibiotics due to unnecessary prescriptions.

DEET (diethyl-meta-toluamide)

This insecticide can be found in most over-the-counter insect repellents. However, there are some concerns about the toxicity of DEET. For instance, a Duke University Medical Center pharmacologist named Mohamed Abou-Donia, Ph.D. has conducted a number of animal studies that found the chemical causes diffuse brain cell death and behavioral changes in rats after frequent and prolonged use. While the chemical’s risks to humans are still being intensely debated, Abou-Donia says his 30 years of research on pesticides’ brain effects clearly indicate the need for caution among the general public. Children in particular are at risk for subtle brain changes caused by chemicals in the environment, because their skin more readily absorbs them, and chemicals more potently affect their developing nervous systems. With heavy exposure to DEET and other insecticides, humans may experience memory loss, headache, weakness, fatigue, muscle and joint pain, tremors and shortness of breath. There are many other insect repellant products that are DEET-free on our shelves that we are comfortable offering to the community.

Acetone

Acetone is a denaturant, fragrance ingredient, and solvent used in nail polish remover. It is classified as an irritant and there is moderate evidence of associated human neurotoxicity.

Aluminum or Alcloxa

(Aluminium chloride, Aluminium Chlorohydrate, Aluminum-zirconium, Aluminium Zirconium Tetrachlorohydrex Gly) – Many different forms of aluminum are used as antiperspirant agents, cosmetic astringents, and deodorant agents. These aluminum compounds prevent sweating by clogging the pores and preventing sweat from reaching the skin’s surface. There is evidence that the forms of aluminum utilized most commonly in commercial antiperspirant products are human toxins/allergens with possible links to breast cancer.

Potassium alum is a naturally occurring mineral salt that is most commonly used in crystal deodorants. While deodorants work by masking odor, and antiperspirants work by clogging the pores, potassium alum’s creates an unfriendly environment for the bacteria that causes body odor. Potassium alum is not an antiperspirant, nor does it inhibit the activity of sweat glands in clinical testing. The main difference between potassium alum and aluminum chlorohydrate is that potassium alum is a much larger molecule, not thought to be absorbable through human skin. Potassium alum has a long history of safe usage in a variety of products.

Artificial colors (FD&C, D&C)

Artificial in terms of food means “a substance not duplicated in nature.” There are currently seven artificial (synthetic) coal-tar based dyes on the market. There is evidence that four of the seven being used cause cancer in laboratory animals. The FDA has banned 17 food dyes since 1918 because of their potentially toxic effects. Furthermore, six of the seven being used in the US have been banned in other countries.

BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole)

BHA is a preservative, stabilizer, fragrance ingredient, and masking ingredient. It is suspected to be an endocrine disruptor and is reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen based on evidence of carcinogenicity in experimental animals.

BHT

(Butylated hydroxytoluene, butylhydroxytoluene) – BHT is a toluene-based ingredient used as a preservative, fragrance ingredient, and masking ingredient. Human case studies show significant allergenic effects.

Bismuth oxychloride

Bismuth oxychloride is a naturally occurring mineral used as a filler ingredient in cosmetics to achieve a shiny effect. It is typically a byproduct of lead/copper refining and may cause extreme irritation, redness, burning, itching, and worsening of some skin conditions (particularly when perspiring or in hot weather).

Coal tar

Coal tar is a thick liquid or semi-solid obtained as a byproduct in the destructive distillation of coal. It is commonly used as an anti-dandruff agent, cosmetic biocide, denaturant, and is a known human carcinogen.

DBP (dibutyl phthalate)

DBP is a fragrance ingredient, plasticizer, and solvent. It is classified as a reproductive and developmental toxin, endocrine disruptor, and a known human respiratory toxin.

Formaldehyde & dormaldehyde donors

(DMDM Hydantoin, Quaternium 15, Diazolidinyl Urea, Imidazolidinyl Urea, Sodium Hydroxymethylglycinate, Tetrasodium EDTA, Benzyl Alcohol, 2-Bromo-2-Nitropane-1, 3-Diol) – Formaldehyde donors/releasers come in many forms and under many different names. They function as antimicrobial preservatives in creams, gels, and liquids. There is strong evidence that formaldehyde donors/releasers are human skin toxins and allergens.

Glycols

(Propylene Glycol, Polyethylene Glycol, Propylene Glycol Alginate) – Propylene glycol is an organic alcohol most commonly used as a fragrance ingredient, humectant, skin-conditioning agent, solvent, and a viscosity controlling agent. It has been shown to be linked to cancer, developmental/reproductive issues, allergies/immunotoxicity, neurotoxicity, endocrine disruption, and organ system toxicity. It has been found to provoke skin irritation and sensitization in humans in as low as 2% concentration.

Hydrogenated/partially hydrogenated oils

Hydrogenation is a process that takes an unsaturated fat, such as soybean or other vegetable oil, and makes it more solid at room temperature, thus more saturated. A large percentage of the once healthy fats are converted to the trans-configuration, also known as trans-fatty acids. This process changes the molecular shape of these fatty acids, which negatively alters their biological functions. Applying these damaged oils to the skin is not recommended.

Hydroquinone

Hydroquinone is an aromatic organic compound used as a fragrance ingredient, hair colorant, reducing agent, & skin bleaching agent. There is strong evidence that this ingredient is a human skin toxin and allergen.

Isopropyl alcohol

Isopropyl alcohol is a common solvent used as an anti-foaming agent, fragrance ingredient, and a viscosity decreasing/controlling agent. It can cause skin, eye, and/or lung irritation, possible organ system toxicity.

Mineral oil, petroleum, & petrolatum

Mineral oil, petroleum, and petrolatum are liquid or semi-solid mixtures of hydrocarbons obtained from petroleum. They are commonly used as a fragrance ingredient, skin protectant, hair/skin conditioning ingredient, and solvent. These ingredients interfere with the body’s natural moisturizing mechanism. They are also directly obtained from the petroleum industry which has a negative environmental impact.

Parabens

(Methyl, Propyl, Butyl & Ethyl Parabens) – Parabens are esters of para-hydroxybenzoic acid and are commonly used as preservatives. Parabens mimic estrogen and are therefore possible endocrine and reproductive disruptors. You can shop Paraben Free products in a specific category under the Health & Beauty section.

Talc

This anti-caking agent is used in some dry powdery foods, personal powder products (bath, baby, face, etc), creams, and supplements. Prolonged inhalation of talc (magnesium silicate) can cause lung problems because it is similar in chemical composition to asbestos, a known lung irritant and cancer-causing agent. Talc is not considered food grade by the FDA.

Testosterone cream

Although some men may benefit from testosterone, the use of any steroid hormone should be supervised by a trained physician. Even bio-identical hormones can be dangerous in excess. Testosterone does not cause prostate cancer, but it does increase the growth rate of a cancer that is already there. So it is important to not take more than directed by a physician after adequate assessments.

Toluene

Toluene is a volatile petrochemical solvent that is a potent neurotoxicant that acts as an irritant, impairs breathing, and causes nausea.

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