E210 Benzoic Acid

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Benzoic Acid, Flowers of Benzoin, Phenlycarboxylic Acid and Carboxybenzene.



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Whilst occuring naturally in many edible berries, fruits and vegetables it is available commercially by chemical synthesis from Benzoin, a resin exuded by trees native to Asia

It is used as an antibacterial and antifungal preservative in acid mediums. It is excreted from the body as hippuric acid between 9 and 15 hours of consumption.

Can be found in beer, coffee essence, dessert sauces, soft drinks, flavouring syrups, fruit juice, pulp and purée, jam, margarine, marinated herring and mackerel, pickles, salad cream and dressings, fruit yoghurt, baked goods, cheeses, gum, condiments, frozen dairy, relishes, soft sweets, cordials and sugar substitutes. Also used in cosmetics, as an antiseptic in many cough medications and an antifungal in ointments.

Best avoided by people with allergy reactions as it can cause a rash similar to nettle rash with large quantities also causing gastric irritation. When combined with Tartrazine (E102) it provokes a very high hyperactive response in children. Can cause asthma, especially in those dependent on steroid asthma medications, is also reputed to cause neurological disorders and to react with sulphur bisulphite (E222)

Not recommended for consumption by children.

The Hyperactive Childrens Support Group belive that a link exists between this additive and hyperactive behavioural disorders in children.


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