Sodium alginate is a safe to consume emulsifier used in food production globally. In this post learn more on how sodium alginate is used and why it’s safe to consume.
We make Keto caramel sauce and it’s delicious. It’s an all natural product with a great shelf life but there’s been one issue we’ve had to deal with: separation. The fats separate and even though the product is perfectly fine to eat, it looks clumpy… we needed to find a healthy and effective solution.
Our caramel sauce solution had to be a high quality ingredient that acts as an emulsifier. However, many emulsifiers are not ideal for human consumption IMO.
What’s an emulsifier?
Emulsions are usually liquids (ingredients), like oil and water, which have been broken up into small droplets and mixed together. When ingredients don’t naturally stay mixed together an emulsifier is needed to help them stay “blended” in a product. An emulsifier helps to bind ingredients to form a stable emulsion “end product”.
All of our research on safe emulsifying ingredients ended with Sodium Alginate. Sodium Alginate is commonly used as a thickener and stabilizer in ice cream, custard, jelly, and other food products.
What is sodium alginate and is it edible?
Sodium alginate is a salt derived from the cell walls of brown algae. Sodium alginate is used as a thickening agent or emulsifying agent in consumable products. Sodium alginate is a very common ingredient used throughout the world in products like ice cream, sauces, custard, and more.
Is sodium alginate safe?
Yes, sodium alginate is perfectly safe to consume (even in relatively high amounts). However, the amount needed to serve as an emulsifier is very low. Meaning: it’s safe to consume much more than you’ll actually ever consume.
“The ingestion of sodium alginate had no significant effect on (a) haematological indices, (b) plasma biochemistry parameters, (c) urinalysis parameters, (d) blood glucose and plasma insulin concentrations, (e) breath hydrogen concentrations. No allergic responses were reported by, nor observed in, any of the volunteers. The study therefore indicates that the ingestion of sodium alginate at a high level for 23 days caused no effects other than those normally associated with a polysaccharide bulking agent; in particular, the enzymatic and other sensitive indicators of adverse toxicological effects remained unchanged.” – source
Is sodium alginate vegan?
Sodium alginate is a natural polysaccharide extracted from brown algae. Yes, sodium alginate is vegan.
How does sodium alginate work?
A “gel” forms by chemical reaction, calcium displaces the sodium from the alginate. The long alginate molecules bond together and thickening (emulsified ingredients) is the result. Heat is not necessary for this emulsifying or gelling to take place. The end product also does not melt and fail when heated.
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