TBHQ stands for tertButylhydroquinone, a light brown powder that is used as a preservative for processed foods. Although it acts as an antioxidant, consuming it is not healthy. TBHQ is used to increase the shelf life of a produced food. It is generally used for foods high in iron as well as other preservatives such as BHA (Butylated hydroxyanisole) and BHT (Butylated hydroxytoluene). Large amounts of TBHQ is harmful for consumption as it can cause liver disease. Read more about How many TBHQ can kill you?
How much can kill?
According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), there cannot be more than 0.02 percent of TBHQ in edible oils. That’s not to say that foods with TBHQ above 0.02 are unsafe. The FDA has put a safety bar on them, that’s all. In 1999, the World Health Organization determined that the average intake of TBHQ in the United States was 0.62 mg/kg body weight, but the actual intake was 1.2 mg/kg, which is 180 percent of the acceptable intake
How TBHQ affects our body?
Any substance in low amounts can be functional for the body, but chronic exposure to high levels can become dangerous. It causes the formation of precancerous gastric tumors, especially in animals. When TBHQ is consumed in a high proportion, it can induce carcinogenicity in humans. A carcinogen is something that can induce cancer in humans. Not only that, but TBHQ can also cause a weakened immune system, which makes you vulnerable to various other diseases. This substance is called an immunotoxin. Other possible effects include hypersensitivity, chronic inflammation, immunosuppression (the body’s inability to fight infections), and autoimmunity (the body’s inability to recognize its cells and then destroy them.). TBHQ can also cause enlarged liver, neurotoxic effects, seizures, and paralysis
How will TBHQ kill?
As mentioned above, it is normal to consume 0.62 mg of TBHQ without worrying about its harmful effects. For science, suppose you have consumed one gram of this poisonous substance. To begin with, you will experience nausea and ringing in your ears, which will then turn into a feeling of suffocation, after which you will probably pass out. Now consider consuming five full grams of TBHQ. All of your symptoms will eventually get worse, killing you, so here is 5 grams of TBHQ is the amount that can kill you. So far, there has been no record of anyone dying of overeating. Although it is highly unlikely that you will consume 5 grams of TBHQ at one time, it is still important to know what you are eating to stay in control. Chronic exposure can also show similar signs.
How to stop using TBHQ?
If you are in countries like Japan where TBHQ is already banned, you don’t have to worry about it. But TBHQ is not banned everywhere for several reasons. If you are in such a place, the only thing you can do is to find out what and how much you are eating. To do this, simply search for TBHQ in the list of ingredients or nutritional values. If the amount of preservatives is greater than recommended, you have the option of changing brands. This way, you can be sure that you are not consuming an excess of this harmful substance.
TBHQ, tertButylhydroxyquinone is a popular chemical used as a preservative (sometimes along with BHA and BHT) to extend the shelf life of foods and is harmful when consumed in large amounts. TBHQ is used when cooking or sprinkling on foods to help keep them fresh. It has been shown to induce carcinogenicity and weaken their immune systems, making them prone to many other diseases. According to the FDA, 0.02% of TBHQ in edible oils is normal. In another study, it was learned that while one gram of TBHQ can cause nausea and choking, five grams of TBHQ can be fatal. Chronic exposure to TBHQ can cause enlarged liver, seizures, and paralysis. Knowing what you are consuming can help you keep track of your consumption and prevent poisoning.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
1. What are the alternatives to TBHQ?
A: BHA (Butylated hydroxyanisole) and BHT (Butylated hydroxytoluene) are good preservatives with fewer toxins that can be used as an alternative. A popular natural preservative that offers better heat stability than TBHQ is oil-soluble green tea extract.
2. What types of foods is TBHQ found in?
A: TBHQ is usually found in fats, vegetable oils, or animal fats. And since many processed foods already contain fat like crackers and frozen noodles, they contain TBHQ.
How do I know if I’m being poisoned by TBHQ?
A: Check the symptoms first. If you constantly feel nauseous and have difficulty catching your breath, contact your doctor immediately and ask for the toxin test, which will help you understand your condition better.