Bixin sources, health risks

Wednesday, October 18, 2017 by

Annatto is a colorant that has an orange-yellow color. The chemical name for annatto is bixin. It is extracted from the seed coats of a tropical tree called achiote or Bixa orellano. The leaves of the tree are shaped like a heart. It also has small pink to white flowers that bear pods, and when they mature they contain hundreds of rust-colored seeds. Bixin is sourced from the rust-colored resinous material surrounding the seed.

Bixin is sold in the market in oil-soluble and water-soluble forms, depending on the method of extraction and subsequent preparation into dilutions, suspensions, mixtures, emulsions, and powders.

It has been used as a colorant in moderately acidic food and beverage systems, such as ices, hard candies, fruit flavors, fruit-based beverages, and other carbonated drinks. Moreover, it is used in dairy products, margarine, fats, popcorn oil, butter mixes, baked goods, icings, snacks, ice cream, salad dressing, and yogurt. In addition, it is used in hair and skin care products, and pharmaceutical products such as compression tablets, tablet coating, and gelatin capsules.

Harmful effects that can be caused by bixin

There are several harmful effects that bixin can cause in the body. It was found to cause headaches in both adults and children, headbanging in children, irritability, restlessness, inattention, and sleep disturbance in adults and children.

Body systems harmed by bixin

Particles of bixin that come in contact in the eyes may irritate the eyes. It can also cause skin irritation when in contact. If inhaled, it can be toxic and may cause irritation in the respiratory tract.

Where to learn more

Summary

Annatto is a colorant that has an orange-yellow color, with a chemical name bixin. It is extracted from the seed coats of a tropical tree called achiote or Bixa orellano. When its small pink to white flowers that bear pods mature, they contain hundreds of rust-colored seeds. Annatto is sourced from the rust-colored resinous material surrounding the seed.

Bixin is sold in the market in oil-soluble and water-soluble forms. It has been used as a colorant in moderately acidic food and beverage systems, such as ices, hard candies, fruit flavors, fruit-based beverages, and other carbonated drinks. In addition, it is used in hair and skin care products, and pharmaceutical products such as compression tablets, tablet coating, and gelatin capsules. It can cause headaches, irritability, restlessness, inattention, and sleep disturbance. It can also cause irritations in the skin, eyes, and respiratory tract.

Sources include:

ColorMaker.com

FedUp.com.au

PubChem.NCBI.NLM.NIH.gov



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