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New Method for Assessing Effect of Preservatives on Human Body
June 23, 2017 08:30

The study shows that common additives, such as sorbic acid, sodium benzoate and potassium sorbate decrease the activity of pancreatic enzymes by 25-50 percent.
Researchers from the Biophysics Institute at the Krasnoyarsk Scientific Center and the Siberian Federal University have developed a new method for assessing the effect of food additives on the body at the molecular level with the help of enzymes. Institute's researcher Elena Esimbekova told details about it.

In particular, experts have already established that the sorbic acid used by food producers inhibits enzymes responsible for digesting proteins at a concentration of less than 1percent of the permissible standard.
"We are offering a new approach in the field of toxicology of nutritional supplements - the evaluation of the preservatives’ effect on the human body based on the change in the activity of enzymes-biomarkers. Food supplements are tested mainly on laboratory animals, but this does not show us the effect of preservatives at the molecular level. We are now creating a set of tests, which will include key enzymes of various metabolic pathways - responsible for the exchange of carbohydrates, ethanol, lactic fermentation, conduction of nerve impulses, etc. This will provide for more accurate assessment of which systems are inhibited when preservatives enter the body”, - Elena Esimbekova said.
In particular, scientists have already established that common additives, such as sorbic acid (E-200), sodium benzoate (E-211) and potassium sorbate (E-202) reduce by 25-50 percent the activity of pancreatic enzymes that help digest proteins.
“According to Russian regulations, the content of these preservatives in foods should not exceed 300 mg per liter. We have found out that sorbic acid inhibits the enzymes responsible for protein digestion by 50% at a concentration of only 2 mg per liter (about 0.7percent of the maximum allowable). Out of the three additives, enzymes are least affected by sodium benzoate” – Elena Esimbekova said.
The research work has been published in the international edition of Food Chemistry.


Author: Vera Ivanova


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