Carrageenan and Its Widely Used

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According to the Google, carrageenan is a family of linear sulfated polysaccharides and it is extracted from red edible seaweeds. Carrageenan is widely used in thickening, gelling, and stabilizer and in some of the food industries. Although many people claimed the carrageenan dangers, the fact is this substance is safe for human to consume. Some people may get misconception between carrageenan and poligeenan. Those are two different types and have a different function too.

More Benefits than the Weakness

Carrageenans are large and have high flexible molecules. Those molecules are curled forming helical structures. Carrageenan is widely used in the food and other industries as thickening and stabilizing agents. This substance gives them ability to form a variety of different gels at room temperature. The three main commercial classes of carrageenan are Kappa, Lota, and Lambda. Kappa forms strong and it reacts with dairy proteins and sourced mainly from Kappaphycus alvarezii. The second is lota. Lota forms soft gels in the presence of calcium ions and it is produced mainly from Eucheuma denticulatum, and the last is Lambda, which is not gel, and it is used to thicken dairy products.

Carrageenan contains a chemical that could decrease the stomach and intestinal secretions. The large amounts of carrageenan seem to pull water into the intestine and it could explain why it is tried as a laxative. In addition, carrageenan also might decrease pain and swelling or inflammation. In common life, carrageenan is found in non-dairy milk like almond milk and coconut milk. Since it has widely used in medication, the research of this substance becomes a popular thing to do. Since many researchers said about carrageenan and claimed that this substance is safe, carrageenan is a versatile fiber used in a variety of foods and personal care products. Dietary supplements and pharmaceutical products are also using this substance.

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