Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Citric Acid - E330

You will have noticed that I've mentioned citric acid(E330) (and it's avoidance) several times on this blog. It is commonly used in manufactured goods as a preservative and, while it is produced naturally in the body and is present in a number of fruits and vegetables, for commercial use, it is manufactured by feeding a type of mould on sucrose, so it's best avoided by anti-candida dieters on two counts.

What really irritates me is that it really doesn't seem necessary. Why is it that Sainsburys, for example, uses citric acid as a preservative in its jars of green olives, but the Co-op doesn't? It appears to me that it is often used arbitrarily by food manufacturers, without real necessity (perhaps a chemist would care to comment?!). It's so damn frustrating to think you've found a 'friendly' pasta sauce or tin of tomatoes, only for it to be ruled out by the insidious presence of citric blinking acid!

It's the bane of my life!

Rant over... normal service will be resumed shortly. :)

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Why does it upset you so much? Citric acid is a good natural preservetive, would you rather them use something unnatural and possibly harmful?

Chemist.

Djinn said...

Well, Chemist. As I explained in my post, much of the commercially-produced citric acid used as a preservative in food stuffs is not derived from citrus fruit as one might imagine, but from the by-product of feeding a type of yeast with sugar. Yeast and sugar are the two potential allergens associated with candida overgrowth. Hence, it seems sensible to avoid citric acid, although I recognise that a lot of the advice given to those following an anti-Candida diet is anecdotal. Either way, my real concern is focused on whether preservatives (citric acid or otherwise) are really that necessary, when it is quite possible, for example, to buy canned tomatoes with NO preservative (whereas as most brands include citric acid).

Anonymous said...

My opinion is that preservatives are not always necessary, but large companies would rather be safe then sorry. And I apologize for my ignorance, I was unawre of why citric acid could be potentailly dangerous for people with such conditions.

Chemist.

Leslie said...

I get hideous multiple-day migraines from even tiny amounts of citric acid. These have been diagnosed and confirmed by medical professionals, including MDs. Because citric acid is so ubiquitous, this sensitivity has a profound effect on my ability to eat in public or rely on "normal" packaged foods. And I agree with this blogger -- it so often seems to have very little purpose. Very frustrating. And I'll bet I'm not the only one. Lots of people struggle for years to figure out what's causing their migraines. Bet this is more common than we know...

Djinn said...

That's interesting Leslie. A friend of mine has regular migraines and is trying to identify what triggers her's at the moment. I'll mention citric acid to her.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for trying to explain these things, it's difficult to get the information you need when you start searching.

Djinn said...

No probs Anon!

Erica said...

I figured out 5 months ago that citric acid was causing my migraines of 15 years. Because it is in EVERYTHING it was practically impossible to figure triggers out from elimination diets. Cutting out citric acid has changed my life! When I have it I get a migraine within 20 minutes. I hate that it is used as a preservative so much.

Erica said...

I figured out 5 months ago that citric acid was causing my migraines of 15 years. Because it is in EVERYTHING it was practically impossible to figure triggers out from elimination diets. Cutting out citric acid has changed my life! When I have it I get a migraine within 20 minutes. I hate that it is used as a preservative so much.

Robin said...

UGH This makes me so frustrated! i am already not eating everything else and now citric acid! im about to give up on this whole thing! I WANT A SANDWICH FOR CRYING OUT LOUD! with mayonaise and crunchy lettuce on my favorite bread.... oh poor me

Jonathan F said...

Hi, after many experiments on myself I too can confirm that citic acid causes migraines. I also believe the citric acid present in fruits is why I get migraines from their consumption also.

I wonder if the citric acid prompts candida, or some other organism present in my gut to produce a chemical that causes the migraines? I find it strange that such as diverse set of triggers, chocolate, cheese and citric acid for instance, can trigger the same response.

Jonathan