What Is Carrageenan and Why Is It Used?

Carrageenan can be found everywhere you look. You will notice that almost every natural food store is full of this product. You will find it in tofu, organic yogurt, and also in the cold cuts of nitrite-free turkey.  It is actually derived from red seaweed and is to be found in numerous health foods.

What is it?

This is a product which is obtained from red seaweeds or algae. It is being used since 1930. It is being used for the treatment of gastrointestinal problems like constipation. An alkaline method is used for processing this substance in order to obtain what is known as a natural food. However, if you prepare it in an acidic solution then you will get something that is known as degraded poligeenan or carrageenan. This has inflammatory properties and is used for trials of drugs for inducing inflammation and various other diseases in the animals of the lab.

What Is It Used For?

If you want to know what this element is, you need to understand the purpose that it serves. Take a look at two important use of this element.

Traditional Medicine: It is an active ingredient present in a solution that can be used for treating everything starting from intestinal problems to coughs. It can also decrease swelling and pain. As a matter of fact, it is known that the acidic form of this ingredient is used as a laxative for the treatment of peptic ulcer.

Food Additive: Although this ingredient has no nutritional value of its own, the chemical structure of it makes it incredibly useful. It performs the role of a thickening agent, binder, and also a stabilizer in different kinds of food items. This property also makes it an important ingredient in toothpaste.

However, before you take it, it is better to talk to your healthcare provider.


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