Wednesday scientists revealed research related to inflammatory bowel disease, ulcerative colitis, and Crohn’s disease. If you use margarine instead of butter, buy packaged bread, or like to have an ice cream cone once in a while, you won’t like this.

After tests were completed using mice, scientists came to the conclusion that emulsifiers used for texture and to extend shelf life of foods are the root cause of intestinal related diseases as well as obesity. The emulsifiers change the composition of bacteria and cause inflammation.

The tests were conducted using the two most widely used emulsifiers, polysorbate 80 and carboxymethylcellulose. The next step is to perform tests on humans and test other emulsifiers.

In mid-twentieth century scientists began to question the use of emulsifiers as an increase in inflammatory bowel disease and metabolic syndrome was discovered. The timing perfectly paired the two as manufacturers began to use increased volumes of the additive.

Although it has long been an assumption by the scientific community that the parallel of increased disease and the use of emulsifiers were linked, they needed to rule out non-genetic and environmental factors before they released their conclusion.

One researcher said that although they had been previously suspicious of the link, they were not prepared for the dramatic results.

By James Turnage


Laboratory Equipment


Photo Courtesy of m01229

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