Carrageenan Safety

Q: Can carrageenan trigger intestinal issues and even most cancers, as I’ve learn on the Web?

A: The security of this meals additive is hotly debated. Derived from seaweed, carrageenan is used to enhance the feel of many meals, together with:

  • ice cream
  • cottage cheese
  • puddings
  • soy milk
  • salad dressing
  • processed meat
  • chocolate
  • some toddler formulation
  • beer
  • dietary supplements
  • prescription drugs
  • toothpastes

The Meals and Drug Administration (FDA) and different well being businesses around the globe contemplate carrageenan protected, although some advise sure restrictions on its use.

A decade in the past, nevertheless, a College of Iowa evaluation of animal research set off alarm bells. It linked carrageenan, significantly a “degraded” kind that could be produced throughout meals preparation and digestion, to gastrointestinal ulcerations and tumors in mice. Degraded carrageenan is assessed as a attainable human carcinogen by the Worldwide Company for Analysis on Most cancers. A number of lab research since then have proven that each food-grade and degraded carrageenan could cause irritation and elevated cell loss of life in human colon cells.

Different scientists have disputed the analysis’s implication that persons are in danger, stating that the animals in research have very completely different intestinal programs than people. They are saying there’s no proof that carrageenan breaks down right into a dangerous kind in individuals.

Extra human research are wanted. We don’t suppose it’s essential to keep away from carrageenan, however if you wish to err on the facet of warning, examine the components listing. The additive is commonly present in processed meals that aren’t significantly healthful anyway, comparable to pudding and whipped cream. Different thickening brokers which can be thought-about protected embody guar, locust bean and xanthan gums.

In 2007 the Joint Meals and Agriculture Group of the United Nations/World Well being Group Knowledgeable Committee on Meals Components suggested in opposition to the usage of carrageenan in toddler system; it’s now banned in toddler system in Europe.

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