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What Is Maltodextrin?

Should You Avoid Maltodextrin?

If you're obsessed with reading labels, then you've probably come across the ingredient maltodextrin. Sounds like some type of sugar, but is it safe to eat? It'll settle your mind to know that this common additive is an easily digestible carbohydrate made from rice, corn, or potato starch (celiacs, beware — it can also be derived from barley or wheat). It's made by cooking down the starch, and then acid and/or enzymes break the starch down even further.

Maltodextrin is a white powder often used in processed foods as a thickener or a filler since it's fairly inexpensive, as well as in pharmaceuticals as a binding agent. You'll find it in canned fruits, snacks, cereal, desserts, instant pudding, sauces, and salad dressings. Since it contains fewer calories than sugar, it's also found in sugar substitutes, such as Splenda or Equal.

Maltodextrin is usually used in such small amounts that it doesn't have a significant impact in terms of the amount of protein, fat, carbohydrate, or fiber that it adds to foods. Although maltodextrin is processed and it's not the healthiest thing to put in our bodies, at least we know it's made from real food, not some nasty chemicals.

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Ebony2445466 Ebony2445466 3 years

Maltodextrin is very harmful to us and is not safe to eat at all. This article needs to be more informative or taken down all together.

Ryan14827034 Ryan14827034 4 years
I try to avoid any substitutes, additives, preservatives, and even normal foods that have been stripped from the original plant or animal. It upsets the yin/yang of the plant which changes what happens to us when we ingest it. I believe that is why cancer rates are so high. If you strip a plant of it's protiens (for example) then the essessance of it is gone. Eating foods "whole" is the best answer. I avoid ("all natural") maltrodexrin for this reason.
MyEnglish-Slovakia MyEnglish-Slovakia 4 years
Avoiding maltrodextrin may not be as important as avoiding corn starch. Interesting information about modified starch may be found at this website. Modified starch contains too much amylase, but only a fraction of it can by digested. This is even worse in case of people with food allergies or intolerance. Modified starch (mainly corn starch) is frequently used in restaurants and fast foods for preparation of different sauces and may cause serious digestion problems. Based on a study conducted in Slovakia and thanks to the translation of this article from Slovak into English by, we would like to recommend people with food allergies that they strictly avoid corn starch.
gorgeousg93 gorgeousg93 4 years
thank you!
Laura14643777 Laura14643777 4 years
ps. MSG has been linked to migraines too.
Laura14643777 Laura14643777 4 years
Maltodextrin can and most of the time contains MSG. Xylotol is a lab made sweetener that can only be broken down by the liver. it doesnt need saliva, gaul bladder or intestines, therfore it is a toxin. Happy eating people!
BeckieC BeckieC 4 years
Response to those who notice pain, stomach ache, swelling, diarrhea, weight gain, Congestive Heart Failure, or Leaky Gut Syndrome. Yes, the smallest amounts of corn byproduct, MSG, manmade preservatives are causing your problems. I had to stop buying anything pre-packaged from the grocery store for corn starch and High Fructose Corn Syrup or Corn Syrup. I gained about 20 pounds without changing my diet. When I stopped eating HFCS, I lost 20 pounds in a coupld weeks. I switched to potato starch, start baking and cooking everything from scratch - even bread and pizza crusts. It took at least 2 years to expel the "chemical" stuff built up in my gut over the course of 10 years, I guess. Graduate schools do not teach after-effects of toxic foods and poisonous vaccines. Only sick people looking for solutions would know all about sickness of this magnitude. And I don't know of a single chemist, physician, or pharmacist who would know anything about poisoning by corn, either: I hope those of you having a good laugh get to have a good session in your bathroom - butt on toilet seat, head in trashcan liner. I suffer Gulf War Illness, which I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy. But then, I didn't make myself this sick. Serving my country caused sickness to this magnitude. The only professional exceptions are physicians who treat patients with multiple sensitivities and immune responses to specific foods. Researchers and compounding pharmacists usually understand the corn poisoning concept, too. Many of those physicians also suffer fibro or CFS, and also suffer sensitivities to food. My best supplement is any type of oral liver detox I can take to clear out any residual on any day I have unwittingly gotten into GMO food.
BeckieC BeckieC 4 years
Corn grown anywhere in the World has been genetically modified. Why? because corn must cross-polinate to produce a crop. As we know from the original Gulf War in 1990, depleted uranium and bio-weapons suspended in chemicals didn't just stay "over there". By wind, by ship and by Air Force, all that contamination came home to the U.S. "in our troops" and on all of our returning military equipment: None of which was decontaminated before it hit the ports of Texas. For those of us who suffer Leaky Gut Syndrome, Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, or Gulf War Illness (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome), none can tolerate any corn products at all. Not even boiled and strained. Once pesticides have penetrated the original crop, there's no fixing it. Unless grown in a giant greenhouse where no outside air or pollen penetrates. Perhaps those Colorado and Washington state marijuana manufacturers have exactly what all of us will need in order to eat anything without sickening repercussions. Some Alfalfa has also been genetically modified, so organic milk will be a thing of the past in less than 2 decades. What other crop can the ag industry make totally un-useable?
911truthseeker 911truthseeker 4 years
If its made from Corn Starch, then in the US where 90% of our corn product is Monsanto's poisonous BT Corn, then Maltodextrin is poison!!!! OK Chemist prove me wrong. My hemorrhoids increase to golf ball size (from nothing) and bleed profusely after each bowel movement until the BT Corn poison has left my system. This happens when I consume any product that contains an American corn by product like Corn starch, corn sugar, modified sugar, modified starch, high fructose corn syrup. If its American corn its likely poison because Monsanto is a terrorist organization.
LeRoy2669285 LeRoy2669285 5 years
This is good news ; it is a natural product that can be digested.\u00a0 Thought that you wou like to know.
glamoured glamoured 5 years
This might be the funniest thread I've read in a while. Poor Maltodextrin being blamed by the angry mob for every malaise known to man... migraines, diarrhea, cancer and even - horror of horrors - making you fat! Amused, I am.
sparklyeater sparklyeater 5 years
Migraine sufferers, beware!  I'm pretty sure maltodextrin is a trigger for migraines. I was getting migraines from Starbucks frappuccinos. The only suspect ingredient in the recipe was maltodextrin.  I cut out the frapps (bummer!) and stopped the migraines from that source. I subsequently learned a migraine expert, Dr. David Buchholz ("Heal Your Headache") that maltodextrin is a one of many variants of MSG.
clpatrick clpatrick 5 years
Reading the comments below, I can see we're in need of a chemist. Fortunately, I have a chemistry degree so I can dispel any rumours!Maltodextrin is perfectly safe. It's a polysaccharide, which means they take plant starch, which is made up of hundreds and thousands of MONOsaccharides and divide it into smaller pieces, called POLYsaccharides. You're probably eating it in its naturally occurring forms anyway, so I don't see how you wouldn't notice "explosive diarrhea" more often. It does not cause diarrhea. It is ABSOLUTELY NOT a mycotoxin; these are toxins produced by fungi that attack corn - these molecules don't even belong in the same class as maltodextrin!! It does not give you cancer at all. Whoever told you this is seriously misled. Xylotiol is completely different - it's a sugar ALCOHOL (NOT polysaccharide). It does cause gas/diarrhea because it is fermented in the gut and sucks water into the bowel (instead of the bowel sucking all the water out of the waste). I think we need to be very careful with things like this. Food safety has never been better! Only 200 years ago, people would die from unsafe foods: bakers would cut flour with talc, farmers would fertilize their soil with heavy metals because it would kill the bacteria. Need I go on? We are so fortunate to have so many shelf-stable, nutritious foods and we shouldn't nit-pick over something that is completely safe. I hate seeing the word "chemical" used with such a bad connotation. Fitsugar, you are guilty of this!  " least we know it's made from real food, not some nasty chemicals" What a terrible thing to say! WATER is a chemical! Oxygen is a chemical! In fact, I'd rather take synthetic chemicals over naturally occurring ones. Why?  Because in a lab, we can guarantee the product that we want, we can purify it and test it and make sure it's 100% pure. With natural extracts, there is only so much purification we can do so in fact, "natural" products are inherently more impure! 
SaraNoH SaraNoH 5 years
Me thinks Anonymous is a troll >.>   Interesting stuff, though I wouldn't worry about this at all. It's far too easy to get hung up on ingredients, instead of enjoying the food.
Tymon Tymon 5 years
Celiacs really don't need to beware.  There is so much processing of the wheat that most of the protein is removed, so it becomes gluten free.
okayjpg okayjpg 5 years
I want to clarify a few things. @ the bleach comment, Bleach is not an enzyme or an acid, it is a base solution. The enzymes and acids are naturally occuring. @ the digestive issue comment, There are two effects Maltodextrin have on your digestive system. 1. Certain natural bacteria in your intestinal tract become very active when breaking down carbohydrates. As I'm sure you know, that's what Maltodextrin is. 2. Maltodextrin is a short chain carbohydrate, allowing your body to utilize it with minute effort. This, in a sense, makes your digestive system a bit lazy. When it comes time to digest something a bit more complex, your body may have trouble, as it is now accustomed to the easily digested additive, and hello digestive problems.
foofairy87 foofairy87 9 years
Does this ingredient give you cancer? I thought i heard it did, and it is also found in some artificially sweetners.. do you know if it's true?
suzanne suzanne 10 years
Hey, anyone else out there using Xylitol? I'm loving it as a sweetner, but don't hear much about it except that it might cause diarrhea, which is def not a problem with me... :? I feel like I found the miracle sweetner, but wonder why everyone else is not into it??? Am I missing something here?
the-clam the-clam 10 years
better for you than melamine or diethylene glycol
craving_vintage craving_vintage 10 years
This is in just about everything. Good to know! Thanks!
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