Crouton Benefits + Side Effects

By Adriane Marie •  Updated: 03/12/22 •  10 min read
crouton benefits and side effects

HEALTH

Energy: crouton side effects may include energy spikes and crashes, dehydration
Longevity: crouton side effects may include high cholesterol
Appearance: crouton side effects may include obesity, weight gain

Croutons are…

a kids book about plant based eating
Teach Kids Where Food Comes From. Look Inside!

ENVIRONMENT

Water footprint: likely low, it takes 1,608 liters of water to produce 1 kilogram of wheat bread / 193 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of wheat bread

Carbon footprint: likely low, 0.83 kg CO2e to produce 1 kilogram or 2.2 pounds of bread, a car driving equivalent of 2 miles or 3.25 kilometers

Destruction: low, crouton production is moderately sustainable and depends on what ingredients are used, be sure to buy Non-GMO/organic, as toxic, chemical pesticides contaminate air, water, soil, etc.

Croutons are…

ANIMALS

Kills: none, crouton production does not require any animals to be killed

Harms: cows, calves if butter is used mother cow and calf distressed due to separation within 24 hours after birth, male calves slaughtered for veal, female calves fed artificially, locked in tiny cages, cows genetically modified to grow so obese that many become lame (unable to walk) shocked with electric prods, shackled with chains and dragged, beaten, prods poked up rectums, live last few months in crowded feedlots with hundreds or thousands of others, without pasture, often without shelter, must stand in mud, ice and their own waste, dairy cows eventually slaughtered for beef once milk production has ended

Indirectly kills or harms: male calves if butter is used, in most cases the dairy industry sells “unwanted” male calves to be slaughtered for veal, as pregnancy must occur for female cows to lactate and produce milk | wildlife and ecosystems, habitat contamination (water and soil pollution), wildlife habitat destruction (deforestation/land clearing), wolves and coyotes killed to prevent predation on livestock

Croutons are…

LABORERS

Health and safety: varies, overall, agriculture continues to be one of the most dangerous industries, farmworkers may be subject to dehydration, heat stroke, unprotected exposure to harmful, toxic chemicals and pesticides, unsafe machinery and clean drinking water may not always accessible

Living conditions: varies, laborers are often exploited, they may face tough working conditions including long hours in the sun and heat performing physically exhausting tasks, labor laws and rights may or may not be in place, even if worker protection exists, employer violations may go unreported, refugees and migrant workers are especially vulnerable to abuse and mistreatment, fearing consequences of job loss or deportation

Wages: varies, generally farmworkers earn meager wages, there are many cases of underpaid agricultural workers, wage theft and no overtime payment or benefits

Croutons are…

Are croutons healthy?

No. Croutons are typically high in sodium and provide little to no nutritional benefit.

croutons are acidic.

acidic foods and alkaline diet benefits that improve ph levels

Are croutons alkaline or acidic? Croutons are acidic.

When you eat food, it breaks down to an ash residue that can be neutral, acidic or alkaline. Minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium, zinc, silver, copper and iron produce an alkaline ash; whereas sulfur, phosphorus, chlorine and iodine, which are in meat, coffee, dairy and alcohol, leave an acid ash.

Going alkaline easier than ever with this: Acidic and Alkaline Foods List

croutons contain gluten (unless specified otherwise).

glutinous foods have side effects but a gluten free diet can help

Are croutons gluten free? No, croutons are not gluten free. Croutons are made with wheat flour and therefore contain gluten.

While celiac disease may not be as rampant as many marketing trends lead us to believe, you may have a gluten sensitivity…

Celiac and gluten sensitivity symptoms are similar and may include:

There are hundreds of potential symptoms, many of which are also symptoms of other conditions.

Going gluten-free easier than ever with this: Gluten and Gluten Free Foods List

croutons contain common food allergens: wheat and milk.

side effects of common food allergens like milk, wheat, soy, fish, tree nuts, peanuts, eggs and crustaceans

Are croutons a common food allergen? Yes, croutons contain common food allergens: milk and wheat. Many people experience allergic reactions to ingredients found in most croutons.

A group of the eight major allergenic foods, AKA the Big-8, include:

These foods account for about 90% of all food allergies in the United States.

Severe food allergies can be life threatening. Following ingestion of a food allergen, a person with food allergies can experience a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. 

Persons may still be allergic to and have serious reactions to foods other than the eight foods identified by the law.

Be aware of common dietary restrictions and food allergens with this: The Big 8 Most Common Food Allergens List

croutons likely have a low water footprint.

water footprints of food and products

Do croutons have a high or low water footprint? Croutons likely have a low water footprint compared to most foods.

What is the water footprint of croutons? It takes 1,608 liters of water to produce 1 kilogram of wheat bread / 193 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of wheat bread.

Did you know that water is a finite, non-renewable resource?

We must do what we can to conserve fresh water and a major way to reduce needless water consumption is to change the way we eat. That’s not to say we need to reduce our water intake….quite the opposite. It’s important for our health to drink lots of water and eat foods that hydrate. The kind of water conservation we’re talking about here is behind the scenes.

How much water does it take to produce an apple? A serving of rice? A steak dinner?

We need to be aware of “water footprints”. That is, the amount of fresh water utilized in the production or supply of goods we consume. As it turns out it takes significantly more water to yield foods that come from animals than foods that come from plants. Imagine how much water a cow needs to consume to generate a piece of beef. Not only how much water a single cow drinks, rather all the water that went into producing the crops that the cow ate.

Find out how much water your food consumes with this: Water Footprints of Foods and Ingredients List

croutons likely have a low carbon footprint.

carbon footprints of food and food emissions

Do croutons have a high or low carbon footprint? Croutons have a low carbon footprint compared to most foods.

What is the carbon footprint of croutons? It takes around 0.83 kg CO2e to produce 1 kilogram or 2.2 pounds of bread, a car driving equivalent of 2 miles or 3.25 kilometers.

Food not only has a water footprint but also a carbon footprint, known as CO2e, which stands for carbon dioxide equivalent. Since carbon measurements are a bit more difficult to comprehend, it is common to equate CO2e to the distance which a car drives in miles or kilometers.

When calculating carbon emissions, some factors may include…

There are a number of steps we can take to reduce energy output. According to Oxford Martin School researchers, if the world went vegan, eliminating animal-derived products, it could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by two thirds and avoid climate damages of $1.5 trillion.

But that’s not all!

It’s best to keep the following in mind when grocery shopping:

Find out how much carbon your food emits with this: Carbon Footprints of Foods and Ingredients List

croutons are moderately sustainable.

sustainable shopping, for eco friendly brands and products good for the environment

Overall, are croutons eco friendly? Are croutons sustainable?

Crouton production is moderately sustainable depending on what ingredients are used. Most croutons are made with milk ingredients such as butter which is unsustainable. Be sure to buy Non-GMO/organic, as toxic, chemical pesticides contaminate air, water, soil, etc. when using regenerative practices.

A 2018 Oxford University study – which is the most comprehensive analysis to date of the damage farming does to the planet – found that ‘avoiding meat and dairy is the single biggest way to reduce your impact on Earth’ as animal farming provides just 18% of calories but takes up 83% of our farmland.

Consuming animal products and byproducts is not environmentally friendly and is one of the worst things for the Earth. Not only is meat production wasteful, it causes enormous amounts of pollution. The industry is one of the biggest causes of climate change.

A 2010 United Nations report said that a global shift towards a vegan diet is vital to save the world the worst impacts of climate change.

croutons are typically not vegan.

benefits of vegan food to eat on a vegan diet which helps save animals

Are croutons vegan? Typically, croutons are not vegan. Croutons often contain milk or butter, which are dairy ingredients, the byproducts of a cow, therefore making it an animal-derived food. A mother cow’s milk must be used in order to produce croutons that use milk and/or butter. 

Animals of factory farming are suffering. They live in horrific conditions that often include confinement, physical abuse and unnatural environments…so much so that they need to receive antibiotics to keep from getting ill or spreading disease. Growth hormones allow all kinds of animals to become fatter faster and live short lives.

Because we cannot see for ourselves how these animals live and what they endure does not mean it isn’t happening. The meat, poultry and dairy industries do everything they can to distance us from knowing how our food comes to be in order to keep us in the dark about what we support each time we buy animal derived products and byproducts.

Go vegan for animals!

It’s the best way to help animals and it’s not as difficult as you may think. Speak for animals with your actions, for they cannot speak at all.

Going vegan is easier than ever, at a glance with this: Vegan and Non Vegan Foods List

croutons may have labor issues and human rights concerns.

benefits of buying fair trade, labor rights, human rights and workers rights issues

Are croutons a product that has known labor issues? At this time, there are no known specific reports of worker mistreatment regarding wheat farming but that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening. Croutons may or may not have labor issues.

Did you know the single largest employer in the world is agriculture? The labor involved behind each and every product cannot go unrecognized. 

Sadly, many labor concerns exist around the world in both developed and developing countries. We must be vigilant to ensure what we buy is not contributing to industries that are unfair to their valuable workers. Some known problems include workplace health and safety, child labor, gender inequality, inadequate pay, wage theft and exploitation. Workers can even experience harassment, humiliation and violence and unfair employers often fail to provide laborers with access to shade, drinking water, restrooms and breaks. Consequently, laborers can face nausea, dizziness, heat exhaustion, dehydration and heat stroke -the leading cause of farmworker death! 

Such mistreatment is like modern day slavery. Workers are often afraid to report issues because they fear it will result in losing their jobs or deportation. 

Fair trade organizations fight to ensure better social, environmental and economic standards. 

We can improve people’s lives with foods we eat every day simply by buying products that are certified fair trade.

Sources:

Croutons, plain – FoodData Central

Adriane Marie

Self-proclaimed Grocery Guru, Material Maven and all around Conscious Consumer Connoisseur. I organize ethical info for us to comprehensively see how purchases impact people, animals and the planet. I hope you find HEALabel helpful and use it for personal and global improvement and empowerment.

Keep Reading