soo annoying that it's so often added it to heavy cream. grrr. i see it in coconut milk too.
i know it's a thickener. i think it's plant-based, but that doesn't make me feel better.
thoughts? deleterious effects? how about guar gum?
o lord. here is an overwhelming article which admittedly i have not yet read in it's entirety. sometimes the head, it spins.. http://raypeat.com/articles/nutrition/carrageenan.shtml i merely googled - i know nothing about that guy.
and eden foods positive slant: http://www.edenfoods.com/articles/view.php?articles_id=82
i do avoid it, was hoping maybe i could relax. i used to drink lots of soymilk with it, but so many things have changed in my diet, i can hardly pinpoint carrageenan as a troublemaker.
just looking for more anecdotes, elaborations. actually would be nice if it were a non-issue.
carrageenan is not only used as a thickener but also as a taste enhancer like MSG. It contains tons of free glutamic acid in unnatural amounts after factory processing. It is found in MANY packaged foods.
"The most common problem for MSG-sensitive people in dairy products appears to be the use of a food ingredient identified on food labels as "carrageenan." Carrageenan may interact with the milk protein in dairy products or may act independently, resulting in some processed free glutamic acid (MSG). Carrageenan is found in most whipping cream, chocolate milk, buttermilk, cream cheese, cottage cheese, sour cream, and ice cream."
Listing all the "hidden names" for MSG: http://www.msgmyth.com/hidename.htm
Video about MSG, aspartame and "excitotoxins": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CQQGkMhjWig
The Joint FAO/WHO expert committee on food additives states that, "based on the information available, it is inadvisable to use carrageenan or processed eucheuma seaweed in infant formulas". There is evidence from studies performed on rats, guinea pigs, and monkeys that indicates that degraded carrageenan (poligeenan) may cause ulcerations in the gastro-intestinal tract and gastro-intestinal cancer. Poligeenan is produced from carrageenan subjected to high temperatures and acidity. The average carrageenan molecule weighs over 100,000 Da while poligeenans have a molecular weight of less than 50,000 Da. A scientific committee working on behalf of the European Commission has recommended that the amount of degraded carrageenan be limited to a maximum of 5% (which is the limit of detection) of total carrageenan mass. Upon testing samples of foods containing high molecular weight carrageens, researchers found no poligeenan.
A recent publication indicates that carrageenan induces inflammation in human intestinal epithelial cells in tissue culture through a BCL10-mediated pathway that leads to activation of NFkappaB and IL-8. Carrageenan may be immunogenic due to its unusual alpha-1,3-galactosidic link that is part of its disaccharide unit structure. Consumption of carrageenan may have a role in intestinal inflammation and possibly inflammatory bowel disease, since BCL10 resembles NOD2, mutations of which are associated with genetic proclivity to Crohn's Disease.
Carrageenan is reported to interfere with macrophage activity.
I'm going to avoid it.
The fact of the matter is, manufacturers do not have to add extra ingredients to a label if it is under a certain percentage of the product in many foods. Real coconut milk separates when cooled just like coconut oil goes from liquid to solid when cooled. If you want cheap and true coconut milk, make it yourself.
Carageenan does not sit well in my stomach. My stomach makes a lot of noise after eating something that has it. Now I just try to avoid it.
Aroy-D brand coconut milk doesn't contain carageenan, guar gum or any other additives. Many people following the Paleo lifestyle like this brand. It's a Thai brand, and is usually available in Asian supermarkets (I used to buy mine in Chinatown in Toronto). It's available canned or in tetrapacks. The tetrapacks are ultimately the best for you, since the cans are still lined with BPA-containing plastic.
Now, I personally don't like the flavour of Aroy-D coconut milk. After wasting 2-3 cans of the stuff, I started making my own coconut milk. It's really easy, and it's cheaper than most of the canned/boxed options out there.
Here's how you do it:
Start out with a cup of shredded (unsweetened) coconut. Boil one cup of water
After the water is boiling, dump both the coconut and boiling water into a blender and blend for 5 minutes. Strain the milk (in cheesecloth, nut milk bag, unbleached coffee filter, etc). and voila! You have homemade, gut-irritant-free coconut milk.
Notes: make sure you boil the water first. It helps melt the fat in the coconut, and it makes the milk creamier.
I store mine in a jar in the fridge and enjoy it in my coffee in the morning. You can always add more/less water depending on how thick you like it.
West soy original unsweetened soy milk does not have carrageenan in it. Yeah !! I want to have a coconut milk that does to have it in it. Anyone know of one Drinking coconut milk not cooking.
Based upon my recent research, carrageenan (the chemically processed form, NOT the actual natural component found in red seaweed) has been linked to colon cancer. In some studies of carrageenan with small rodents, colon cancer was the result 100% of the time.