The Truth About Carrageenan


Amy Chappell, Editor and Host of Dr. Coldwell Opinion © 2013

Does it come to anyone’s surprise that the FDA is allowing a scientifically proven dangerous chemical in our foods? These days, that’s not really a surprise.

We all know a box of twinkies is without a doubt a risk to your health, but would you suspect an Organic, non-GMO, Almond Milk to contain dangerous chemicals?

Meet an emulsifier, thickening agent, and stabilizer named Carrageenan.
Carrageenan is derived from red seaweed. One may think since it is derived from a natural plant, it is safe. Think again! Upon my research, I found that this widely used additive is known for many health problems from colon cancer, to anaphylaxis, to gastro-intestinal ulcers.

Carrageenan is used in many dairy and non-diary products like nut milks, yogurts, cheeses, jellies, ice cream, but also in toothpastes, and fire fighting foam. It is used to give the product a smooth texture and enhance the flavor. The following quote from http://www.wisegeek.org/what-is-carrageenan.htm will explain how this additive is derived.

“Carrageenan is produced in two forms: refined and semi-refined. To produce the refined form, the algae is cooked in an alkaline solution for several hours, then the solid parts of the seaweed are filtered out. The carrageenan is concentrated and removed from the solution, then dried. This method for extracting the substance has been used for hundreds of years, although it is slow and expensive.
To produce the semi-refined form, the algae is cooked in an alkaline solution that contains potassium hydroxide. The potassium prevents the carrageenan from dissolving in the solution, but allows most of the other parts of the algae — like proteins and carbohydrates — to dissolve. The algae is then removed from the solution, washed, and dried. What is left is carrageenan and cellulose, which is ground into a powder. Because it does not gel with potassium, the lambda class cannot be produced with this method.”

Wow! So, in essence, the seaweed is soaked in a caustic solution and is somehow fit for human consumption?! It is actually just the opposite! Chemists actually use the carrageenan gel to carry microbes and immobilize cells. According to Dr. Russell Blaylock in his book “Health and Nutrition Secrets that can Save Your Life”, carrageenan is used in animal experiments to induce intense inflammation, and is classified as a tumor promoter. Dr. Blaylock also states carrageenan is an additive that may even contain MSG. Not only does it promote tumors, but carrageenan also can cause ulcerations and malignancies in the gastro intestinal tract in animal studies. According to Dr. Joann Tobacman, M.D. , “…carrageenan is taken up by the intestinal cells rather easily, but the cells are unable to metabolize it. As carrageenan accumulates in cells, it may cause them to break down, and over time this process could lead to ulceration.

In the past I came across information that carrageenan was an emulsifier and it caused the pores in the intestinal tract to become larger; permitting larger molecules of undigested food to enter the bloodstream.
This would cause a burden on the lymphatic system, whose main function is to clear out “foreign invaders” from the bloodstream”

Many of us know that optimal health starts in the gut, so carrageenan looks like it can be the culprit to many health problems and organ malfunctions. If the pore sizes in the intestinal tract are increasing, this allows larger amounts of toxic waste into the bloodstream and potentially to the point to where the lymph system cannot clean out the blood. Ultimately, that would lead to having a lot of “sludge in the system”, fatigue, and toxemia.

Why would the FDA allow things in our food that would make us sick? It is very simple. The Food industry and Drug industry are under one administration, hence the “Food AND Drug Administration.” The more illness inducing foods the FDA allows, the more the Pharmaceutical/ Drug industry can profit from the illnesses. Anyone can see that these two industries go hand in hand. The most stunning part of this is that the FDA openly ignores the dangers of ingredients like carrageenan.

“Yet in the case of carrageenan, an ingredient found in a wide variety of food products, the FDA sided with the food industry by ignoring the vast body of publicly funded scientific literature pointing to serious harm from consuming carrageenan. Rather than act on the citizen petition by the nation’s preeminent publicly funded expert on food-grade carrageenan, the FDA denied the request to remove carrageenan from our food supply.”

It is very clear that the FDA does not care about our well-being and is instead only interested in making money from our sicknesses. When I learned of this dangerous and toxic ingredient, I immediately cut it out of my diet. The most prominent product in my diet with carrageenan was Tempt HempMilk. I am coffee and tea addicted, so I HAD to find a solution! I will from here on out make my own nut milks and do a complete full body cleanse. I only trust the BePure cleanse, which is available at www.mybepure.com.
I was actually very surprised to find out how easy it is to make my own Hemp Milk. I get my hemp seeds from http://www.greenpolkadotbox.com/invite/id/12080/ as well as most other foods.

Here is my simple Hemp Milk Recipe:
½ Cup Hemp Seeds
3 Cups water
2tbs Raw, Local Honey (can also use dates or maple syrup)
1tbs Vanilla
Blend the hemp seeds and water together until smooth. I don’t have a Vitamix, so I blend this for about 2 minutes on high.
Once smooth, add in the honey and vanilla. Blend until mixed well.
Voila! You have fresh hemp milk with no harmful additives or synthetic vitamins!

Thank you to our friend and contributor
Editor of Dr. Coldwell Opinion© 2013
Amy Chappell
If you have any questions please email me at amy@drleonardcoldwell.com

9 responses

  1. Wow…you just can’t get away from the stuff huh?! I am from the south and most people use flour as a thicken agent but that may contain Carageenans also plus if its white as most bleached flour is that’s a whole other issue. Sidebar, what is coconut water good for exactly? I do take and use coconut oil but the water seems like it might make me gag…anyhoo do elaborate please…. :)

  2. Okay thanks! I will review this info and see how I can apply it to my cooking and grocery shopping. This one was a bit harder just because there are so many foods we love with this in it. When I feel overwhelmed by different foods having bad things in them, I just apply the rule of moderation. Works for me! lol

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