Carrageenan: Linked to Gastrointestinal Inflammation and Colon Cancer
- Cornucopia’s guide to avoiding carrageenan in your food
- If you cut carrageenan out of your diet and noticed improvements in your digestive health, please fill out a questionnaire to help us and medical researchers better understand the impact of carrageenan on public health.
Research links the controversial food ingredient carrageenan to serious gastrointestinal inflammation and colon cancer.
Yet it is still found in many foods, including some certified organic foods.
At the USDA’s National Organic Standards Board meeting in May 2012, Dr. Joanne Tobacman, a physician-scientist at the University of Illinois School of Medicine and the nation’s foremost independent expert on carrageenan, presented her research and urged the NOSB to remove carrageenan from organic foods.
The carrageenan trade lobby group fought back hard, and found allies in companies like Group Danone (Stonyfield), CROPP (Organic Valley), Dean Foods (Horizon and Silk), Hain Celestial (Earth’s Best, Rice Dream and Westsoy) and Smucker’s (Santa Cruz Organics and R.W. Knudsen).
Their lobbyists convinced enough corporate-friendly NOSB members, including employees of Whole Foods, Organic Valley and Driscoll’s, to ignore the disturbing findings of dozens of independently funded and peer-reviewed studies, including several that found higher rates of colon cancer in lab animals given a diet containing food-grade carrageenan.
Cornucopia developed a guide to help consumers avoid foods with carrageenan.
And given its effect on gastrointestinal inflammation, Cornucopia urges anyone suffering from gastrointestinal symptoms (irritable bowel syndrome/IBS, spastic colon, inflammatory bowel disease, chronic diarrhea, etc.) to completely eliminate carrageenan from the diet for two weeks.
If you have eliminated carrageenan from your diet for at least two weeks in an effort to find relief from gastrointestinal symptoms, please let us know the results by filling out a questionnaire developed in collaboration with medical researchers.
Your participation in this questionnaire will help scientists better understand the severity and degree of carrageenan-related gastrointestinal disease in the general population. Experimenting with a carrageenan-free diet has already resolved uncomfortable conditions for many, so if you suffer from gastrointestinal symptoms, cutting out carrageenan is certainly worth a try.