Food additive E150a: what is it in cognac, composition, effect on the body

Medications and supplements

Food additive E150a is a special substance obtained as a result of the heat treatment of sugar. In food production, it is used as a natural caramel coloring agent. It has been widespread since the second half of the 19th century.

What is E150?

Food additive E150a is essentially burnt sugar. According to its chemical structure, it belongs to the category of natural heteropolymer pigments. The dye is also called caramel or sugar coloring. It is in the form of a powder or a viscous liquid of a dark color. The food additive does not change its properties when exposed to sunlight or when heated. The taste of E150a in its pure form is bitter. It easily dissolves in alcohol and water. In an oil environment, the dye practically does not change its structure. The most common sources of E150 are considered to be sugar beet, corn starch, and cane.

The food additive is made by heating sugar. It can also be made at home. Citric acid or juice is used for this purpose. The mixture is put on the stove. The longer it is left on the fire, the darker it becomes. The taste of the substance also depends on this. The dark brown additive will have a characteristic bitterness. The lighter variation E150a has a milder flavor.

The dye and emulsifier E150 are classified according to the complexity of their manufacture. Food additive E150a is a simple caramel. E150d is manufactured using ammonia-sulfite technology. E150b is a caramel manufactured using an alkaline-sulfite process. And E150c, in turn, is produced with a focus on the ammonia principle.

Composition of Sugar Coloring
On an industrial scale, the food additive E150a is produced from sucrose, glucose, fructose, or malt syrup. The dye can have a powder or liquid structure. A distinctive feature is the characteristic smell of burnt sugar. In addition to the main ingredient, the following substances may be present:

  • ammonium alkali;
  • potassium;
  • acetic, citric, and sulfuric acids;
  • calcium;
  • sodium.

Note! The food additive is also used in small quantities in the manufacture of medicines.

Is sugar kohl harmful?

The dye E150a is approved for use in all countries. As it is manufactured from natural raw materials, the risk of harmful effects on the human body is minimal. The exception is cases of excessive consumption of products containing it. Uncontrolled intake of food additives in the body can provoke digestive disorders and flatulence.

Because of its high melanin content, E150a may help to spread the tan better. In addition, the additive can protect the body from radioactive radiation. In narrow circles, the substance is considered carcinogenic, but there is no official confirmation of this information.

For diabetics, the harm of the substance is to stimulate the growth of glucose. In addition, meals containing sugar tint have a high caloric content. For this reason, their excessive consumption contributes to weight gain. This is especially dangerous for people who are obese, and those who are predisposed to it.

Whether or not the food additive E150d is dangerous

Food additive E150d uses ammonia salts in its production. Due to this, the addition of the substance during the production allows you to give the product a characteristic caramel color. There is an opinion that this kind of sugar coloring can provoke the growth of malignant cells. But the results of many years of research refute that theory. The only danger could lie in the residual salt content. For this reason, it is advisable to choose foods that contain E150a rather than its derivatives.

In moderate intake, the food additive E150d has no detrimental effects on human health. Despite this, it is not recommended for allergic people and diabetics. In the case of metabolic disorders, it can provoke a deterioration in health. For people who abuse sweets, the presence of an additive in the composition can end in obesity.

In the case of individual intolerance to the substance, the following symptoms may appear:

  • skin rash;
  • Quincke’s edema;
  • itchy sensations;
  • lacrimation.

If an allergic reaction develops, it is necessary to take an antihistamine immediately and consult a doctor. It is equally important to eliminate the product containing the food additive from the diet.

Where and why do you add sugar coloring?

Sugar coloring is one of the oldest and most widely used food colorings. The additive E150 is found in almost every type of food product (dough, beer, black bread, buns, chocolate, cookies, spirits and liquors, creams, fillers, potato chips, desserts, and many others).


The food additive E150a has no health hazards when used in moderation. It is widely used in food production. The main advantages of the colorant and emulsifier include their natural origin.



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