Carrageenans is a food ingredient that is made up of groups of sulphated polysaccharides. These are primarily used in the food industry as a stabilizing and thickening agent that mainly improves the physical look of the food. This is the very reason why carrageenan is used widely by different sectors in the food industry, especially food manufacturing plants and restaurants as well.
Carrageenan accomplishes these feats because of its ability to bind to proteins. Its ability to combine with these proteins are the ones that makes it very useful in dealing with meat and dairy products, as well as with juices and infant formulas.
How Carrageenan Is Processed
These carrageenans originate from a specific specie of edible red seaweeds. These red seaweeds are harvested, dried, and are then baled. Once the first steps are done, these are then ground and are sifted. This is done so that the sand and other unnecessary sediments are removed.
The processed seaweeds are then put into an alkali solution that contains potassium hydroxide, which is then heated to separate the carrageenan from the red seaweeds. The cellulose of the seaweeds are then removed as it undergoes the process of filtration. Once it is done filtering, it then goes through centrifugation to further the purification process.
The processed solution is then dried up to remove the unneeded moisture. Once all of these are done, the carrageenan is then powdered and is further ground to the specification required by the purchaser.
The Health Benefits of Carrageenan
Carrageenan is known to have a very active antioxidant activity, making it a very useful form of antioxidant that makes the body healthier in almost all aspects. This is one of the many reasons as to why carrageenan is also used as a health supplement by some, and not just as a food ingredient. Carrageenan is also very effective in improving the processed of your digestive system as it makes the digestion more consistent and speedier.
If you want to be a healthy person, and at the same time to get to eat food that looks good and tastes delicious, then you must know that carrageenan is what you need. It not only improves your food’s taste, but it also helps you live a better life, adding more years into your life with every food present with carrageenan that you eat.