Is a nitrate always a nitrate?

Reading this article this morning about spinach and how it’s the nitrates in it (and other leafy greens) that do good things for you not just the iron.

which got me to thinking - if it’s high in nitrates why isn’t it a no-no on MAV diets, given nitrate stuff like bacon ham etc is a big no-no

or is a nitrate not always a nitrate? - biochem geeks, answers on a postcard please :smiley:


This a really question given the article pushing the benefits of spinach.

First up, there are two forms not to be confused: nitrites and nitrates. It is thought that both can be problematic for migraineurs but it is likely the nitrites that are the biggie. Nitrite is much more toxic, and is commonly used in cured meats for colour and to inhibit bacterial growth. Usually found in hotdogs for example but there are other bits of crap in those delicious dogs that might also be contributing such as MSG and tyramine.

Here’s a nitrate:

and here’s a nitrite:

I think nitrates at higher doses might trigger some people but my guess is the concentration in spinach may not be high enough and of course there’s no nitrites in it.

Clear as mud?

BTW, this applies to sulfates and sulfites as well.

S :shock:

MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM…hot dogs… :stuck_out_tongue:

got my ites and ates mixed up :lol:

but thanks for that Scott - I knew I should have paid more attention in chemistry :smiley:

interesting - Heal Your Headache book says spinich is okay doesn’t it???

I have cut down but have always eaten spinach off and on in between salads.

What about nitrite free deli meat and turkey bacon - are they safe? they have no preservatives


I bought nitrate and nitrate and preservative free hot dogs and bacon (turkey, beef, and pork kinds) and they all made me dizzy… just not as dizzy as the real heavy laden stuff. Bummer. I find in general that I actually cannot even eat much pork period and read somewhere that some people don’t do well with the pork proteins much less nitrates/nitrites, etc. Bummer again.

ive bought turkey bacon and turkey hot dogs and deli meat that is nitrate free - haven’t noticed any additional dizziness - it seems to come and go when it wants :frowning: