Is Potassium Sorbate Bad for You?

Is Potassium Sorbate Bad for You?
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Is the preservative used to prevent mold growth in foods such as cheese, yogurt, wine, dried meat, pickles, apple cider, and many herbal dietary supplements harmful for humans?

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Previously, we’ve looked at the safety of the preservative sodium benzoate. But what about potassium sorbate, commonly used to prevent mold growth in cheese, yogurt, wine, dried meat, pickles, apple cider, and many herbal dietary supplements? Harmful, harmless, or helpful?

Well, it’s been found harmless to Syrian hamsters, but toxic to Chinese hamsters. Then, they discovered it’s actually harmless to Chinese hamster ovary cells, just toxic to Chinese hamster lung cells—but harmless to mouse lung cells. Now rats are a whole ‘nother story.

But what about human cells? Took us until now to find out: “Does potassium sorbate induce genotoxic or mutagenic effects in lymphocytes [human lymphocytes, white blood cells]?” The paper concludes: “Based on our…results, consumers should be made aware that [potassium sorbate] should be considered a genotoxic and mutagenic compound.”

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Peter Mellor.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Previously, we’ve looked at the safety of the preservative sodium benzoate. But what about potassium sorbate, commonly used to prevent mold growth in cheese, yogurt, wine, dried meat, pickles, apple cider, and many herbal dietary supplements? Harmful, harmless, or helpful?

Well, it’s been found harmless to Syrian hamsters, but toxic to Chinese hamsters. Then, they discovered it’s actually harmless to Chinese hamster ovary cells, just toxic to Chinese hamster lung cells—but harmless to mouse lung cells. Now rats are a whole ‘nother story.

But what about human cells? Took us until now to find out: “Does potassium sorbate induce genotoxic or mutagenic effects in lymphocytes [human lymphocytes, white blood cells]?” The paper concludes: “Based on our…results, consumers should be made aware that [potassium sorbate] should be considered a genotoxic and mutagenic compound.”

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Peter Mellor.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to www.justfinewine.caQuinn Dombrowski / Flickr, and www.innocentenglish.com.

Doctor's Note

Be sure to check out all my other videos on preservatives

For more context, check out my associated blog post: Should We Avoid Titanium Dioxide?

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