Vegetable oils: These oils are highly refined and oxidized, rendering them toxic and inflammatory. Vegetable oils of any type are best avoided, and particularly those that have been hydrogenated. They are full of the fats that clog arteries and promote obesity.

Sodium phosphate: This ingredient is used as an emulsifier in processed cheese products, but it is also used in pharmaceutical medications and comes with a warning for possible kidney damage.

Potassium phosphate: This is used as an emulsifier and preservative in processed cheeses, but also as a medication for kidney stones and to make urine more acidic. It may trigger allergic reactions.

Tartrates: May cause diarrhea.

Coloring agents: Yellow 6 and yellow tartrazine are banned by the European Union because they have been shown to promote tumor growth in animal studies.

Trisodium phosphate: This emulsifier is the ingredient that makes sprayable cheese so smooth. The bad news is that trisodium phosphate is also used in cleaners and stain removers.

Isolated and artificial vitamins: You may think it’s good that your cheese product has been fortified with a selection of vitamins, but these isolated forms cannot be absorbed properly by the body, and may even be toxic.

Sodium and sugar: Processed foods contain pure sodium, which is a purified form of salt. Natural salts, on the other hand, contain other trace minerals, which make them more easily absorbed by the body. Sodium on its own can be dangerous in excess. Sugar is ubiquitous in our culture and should be reduced as aggressively as possible. Sugar is certainly never an ingredient in real natural cheeses.

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According to a 2010 article published by The New York Times, that Domino’s pizza with 40 percent more cheese contained about 2/3 the amount of your recommended daily intake of saturated fat — in just one slice! With restaurants and processed cheese companies selling fatty products like that, no wonder the western world has a rising obesity epidemic.

Cheese can be made with rennet, which is made from an enzyme that comes from calves’ stomach linings. You can find some cheese labeled as vegetarian, but otherwise, they probably contain rennet. According to The Vegetarian Society, “The traditional source of rennet is the stomach of slaughtered newly-born calves. Vegetarian cheeses are manufactured using rennet from either fungal/bacterial sources or genetically modified micro-organisms.”

Poor manufacturing practices make cheese an unhealthy choice. According to Peta, “They [the cows] are treated like milk-producing machines and are genetically manipulated and pumped full of antibiotics and hormones that cause them to produce more milk. While cows suffer on factory farms, humans who drink their milk increase their chances of developing heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and many other ailments.”

According to the Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine, “one-fourth of an average 12-inch cheese pizza contains nearly 13 grams of fat, including 6 grams of saturated fat and 27 milligrams of cholesterol.” All of that packs on the calorie content too, thus packing on the weight. Consuming too much cheese can lead to diseases further down the road.