FYI THURSDAY

WHAT IS CARRAGEENAN?

What is carrageenan?  I’m glad you asked. 🙂 It is a setting agent used in desserts, puddings, ice cream, gelato and things that need a creamy consistency.  It is considered natural because it is derived from red and purple seaweed. But its’ side effects are anything but natural and not good for you.

Here is a list of uses for carrageenan that I found on Wikipedia:

Food and other domestic uses[edit]
Desserts, ice cream, cream, milkshakes, yogurts, salad dressings, sweetened condensed milks
Sauces: to increase viscosity
Beer: clarifier to remove haze-causing proteins
Pâtés and processed meats (e.g., ham): substitute for fat, increase water retention, increase volume, or improve slicing
Toothpaste: stabilizer to prevent constituents separating
Fruit Gushers: ingredient in the encapsulated gel
Fire fighting foam: thickener to cause foam to become sticky
Shampoo and cosmetic creams: thickener
Air freshener gels
Marbling: the ancient art of paper and fabric marbling uses a carrageenan mixture on which to float paints or inks; the paper or fabric is then laid on it, absorbing the colors
Shoe polish: to increase viscosity
Biotechnology: to immobilize cells and enzymes
Pharmaceuticals: used as an inactive excipient in pills and tablets
Soy milk and other plant milks: to thicken
Diet sodas: to enhance texture and suspend flavors
Pet food
Personal lubricants
Vegetarian hot dogs

My, my.  It is used in things from desserts to air freshener gels to fire fighting foam. Needless to say, carrageenan is a highly processed form of seaweed.

Oh, and the side effects that I mentioned earlier, how about these:

it has been shown to add to the inflammation of your body
it has a negative impact on diabetes by creating a negative impact on insulin sensitivity
there is a chemical link between carrageenan and cancer
it has been known to contribute/cause leaky gut

As always when I am giving you information – do your own research.  Find out for yourself if carrageenan is a natural additive that you want in your food or not.  Me?  I believe there is enough evidence that I will not buy any food that has carrageenan in it.  But that’s just me. 🙂

Bye for now,

Debbie

 

 

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