Types of food additives
Food additives are categorized into different types as some additives have certain effects.
Some types of food additives are as follows:
Humectants: This food additive locks the moisture in the food products.
Raising agents: This food additive increases the volume of the food with the help of gases.
Anti-caking agents: This food additive prevents the ingredients in the products from becoming lumpy.
Thickeners and vegetable gums: This food additive improves the consistency or the texture of the food products.
Food acids: This food additive maintains the appropriate acid level in the product.
Gelling agents: This food additive changes the texture of the food to gel form.
Artificial sweeteners: This food additive enhances the sweetness in food products.
Preservatives: This food additive prevents the microbes from increasing or spoiling the food product.
Emulsifiers: This food additive prevents the fats from piling up together.
Flavors and flavor enhancers: This food additive enhances the flavor of the food item.
Stabilizers and firming Agents: This food additive maintains the balance of food dispersion.
Bulking agents: This food additive increases the volume of the food without making any major changes in the present energy of the food.
Foaming agents: This food additive uniforms the aeration of the gases present in the food.
Flour treatment: This food additive enhances the baking quality of the food products.
Mineral salts: This food additive improves the flavor and texture of the food products.
Glazing agent: This food additive protects the food and improves its appearance.
Propellants: This food additive aids in propelling the food from the container.
Functions of food additives
The food additives used in food products serve five major functions and are as follows:
Food additives maintain the wholesomeness of the food products by using preservatives that prevent the spoilage of the food by the germs and keep the vegetables and fruits fresh when exposed to air.
It provides a consistent and smooth texture to the food products by using different food additives like anti-caking agents, stabilizers, and emulsifiers.
It controls the balances of acid and base levels in the food products and provides leavening, which helps the baking items to rise.
Food additives are commonly used to enhance the color and flavor of food products, which eventually improves the appearance of the food.
It also mainly preserves and improves the nutritional value of the food products or fortifies the essential nutrients in the basic food products.
Commonly used food additives
Different types of food additives perform certain functions of their own. But not all types of food additives are used in peopleâ€™s daily lives. The food additives commonly used are as follows:
Monosodium glutamate (MSG): It is the most common food additive which individuals use to improve and intensify the flavors of savory dishes. MSG is safe to use by people in control.
Artificial sweeteners: It is used in beverages mostly to enhance its sweetness and lower the number of calories in the food item.
Carrageenan: This acts as an emulsifier, a thickener, and preservative in different food products like cottage cheese, ice cream, almond milk, and coffee creamers.
Artificial food coloring: It enhances the appearance of the food item, but overuse can also cause allergic reactions or promote hyperactivity in children.
Guar gum: It is used to thicken the food items or bind them together. In food items like sauces, ice creams, and soups, guar gum is applied.
Sodium nitrate: It is found in processed food items like meats to prevent it from growing bacteria and adds a salty flavor to it.
High fructose corn syrup: It is used as a sweetener made out of corn and used mainly in snack foods, breakfast cereals, sodas, juices, and candies.
Sodium benzoate: It is used as a preservative in carbonated drinks and acidic food items.
Yeast extract: It is added to savory food products like soy sauce, cheese, and salty snacks to enhance their flavors.
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