What it Thaumatin? – Uses and Side Effects (Diabetes?)

Thaumatin (also known as E957 in the European Union) is a food additive, acting as a flavor enhancer and sweetener, it is a natural product extracted from the husks of katemfe fruit’s seeds, growing in the Thaumatococcus daniellii bush, in West Africa.

The fruit contains 1-3 black seeds surrounded by a gel and capped with a membranous sac, the aril, which contains the sweet material.

It is, in fact, a compound of proteins which are formed in the fruit when it suffers from an attack by pests. These fruits were used by local people as a flavor and flavor enhancer and less as a sweetener.

E957 extraction began in 1970 and during the next two decades, there have been many studies on its properties and qualities. It is purified by selective ultrafiltration, but small amounts of organic non-protein impurities remain in the commercial product.

Sweeter Than Sugarsugar alcohol avoid

As a sweetener, it is 2000 times sweeter than sugar, but its sweetness has a different taste, is not immediately perceived and has a very long persistence.

For instance, in some citrus fruit products, this sweetener has been shown to be useful in masking the bitter elements of natural flavors from the fruit. Therefore, it is used in numerous products such as yogurts, juices, and other desserts.

Good for Your Teethsmile teeth tooth

Bacteria in the mouth cannot break it down, so it doesn’t affect teeth. It is very stable at high temperatures (hence, is suitable for processed foods and for cooking) and acidity and has no calories.

It is used in amounts of 50 mg/kg in confectionery containing cocoa or fruit without added sugar, and in amounts of 400 mg/kg in dietary supplements based on vitamins or minerals.

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In addition, it is also used in small quantities as a flavor enhancer in water-based flavored drinks and various desserts. To adjust taste, it is combined with other sweeteners.

The sweetener is used in amounts of 50 mg/kg in confectionery containing cocoa or fruit without added sugar, and in amounts of 400 mg/kg in dietary supplements based on vitamins or minerals.

It is also used in small quantities as a flavor enhancer in water-based flavored drinks and various desserts. To adjust taste, it is combined with other sweeteners.

Thaumatin Sweetener Precautions And Side Effects

In the US, this sweetener has GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) status as a flavor enhancer and as a sweetener.

The daily dose is not limited and the quantities from foods don’t usually cause side effects. However, there are some people who are allergic to E957. This additive is not allowed in foods for infants and young children.

Type 2 Diabetes

Moreover, according to some studies, artificial sweeteners actually cause type 2 diabetes Mellitus, heart disease, metabolic syndrome, and strokes.

For these reasons, the American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association give artificial sweeteners a cautious thumbs-up.

More importantly, data from the Nurses’ Health Study concluded that risk for diabetes was considerably amplified for individuals consuming at least one drink with artificial sweeteners per day.

Tip – type 2 diabetes is a chronic health condition that affects more than 34 million Americans, according to the CDC. It is more common in Latinos, African Americans, Asian Americans/Pacific Islander, and Native Americans. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over 80,000 deaths occur every year due to type 2 diabetes in the United States. 

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Interestingly, there are countries, such as United States, Japan, Israel, and the European Union, that have approved it as a high-intensity sweetener and flavor enhancer.

Note

Artificial sweeteners have some bad and some good properties, however, you should have the facts to make an informed decision about which (if any) you might want to consume.

References

https://academic.oup.com/chemse/article-abstract/15/4/457/360624?redire
https://academic.oup.com/chemse/article/26/2/167/276325
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6686588

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2 thoughts on “What it Thaumatin? – Uses and Side Effects (Diabetes?)”

  1. I unknowingly consumed Thaumatin in a beauty supplement called Beauty Dust. After two sachets, I found that it had triggered a drug reaction that I get to artificial sweeteners and stevia, namely an itchy burning rash on my lower legs. This usually lasts for a number of weeks when triggered. This one has also another nasty side effect that I have never had before, the nasty bitterness is lingering and won’t go away and it is making me incredibly thirsty. I usually sleep well, but also now have insomnia. As soon as I began to get the symptoms, I stopped using the product and checked all the ingredients. The only ingredient that I was unfamiliar with was Thaumatin. When I looked it up I wasn’t surprised to see that it was an artificially modified natural sweetener and the culprit of my reaction!

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