Yes, But Would You Eat It? “X” is for Xanthan Gum

Welcome to the Blogging from A to Z Challenge! Each day in April (except Sundays) I’ll be posting about unusual and exotic foods.

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I don’t even have to ask you if you’d eat it (even though I will), because odds are you have ingested xanthan gum. It’s in some toothpastes. It’s in some salad dressings. It’s in some wallpaper paste. Yes, xanthan gum is a plant-based food thickener. So where does it come from? Well, it’s made from bacteria that infect numerous plants. So yes, it’s plant-based. And the finished product doesn’t contain any viable bacteria.

Some studies have found that xanthan gum, when added to foods, may help lower blood sugar. It may lower cholesterol. Because it helps to bind water, it can be used for its laxative effect. It has no nutritional value.

I’ll ask it anyway – would you eat xanthan gum?