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Glucose oxidase sources, health risks

Thursday, November 02, 2017 by

Glucose oxidase is a food preservative derived from the fungus, Aspergillus niger. The compound is typically used in breads and pastries. The World Health Organization (WHO) has listed the substance to be generally safe but has noted that improper manufacturing can cause impurities. These, in turn, can contribute to disease.

The process in which glucose oxidase is made will not be covered in this introduction. It is assumed that food manufacturers understand the dangers of incorrect handling. What will be discussed are the potential hazards impure glucose oxidase can bring.

As a final precaution: Take the extra diligence to ensure that the products you consume use only food-grade glucose oxidase.

Harmful effects that can be caused by glucose oxidase

Glucose oxidase is labelled as a relatively dangerous substance. Severe overexposure to the compound can result in injury or death. Those who handle it are encouraged to follow industrial hygiene practices, least of which is always wearing protective equipment such as gloves and safety goggles.

Glucose oxidase is irritating to the eyes and skin. Typical symptoms include redness, swelling, watering of the eyes, and severe itching. In case of contact, immediately flush the eyes with water for at least 15 minutes. Seek medical attention. For cases where the substance interacts with the skin, wash the affected area with clean water and visit the local hospital’s emergency unit. Contaminated clothes should be washed thoroughly before reuse.

If you should so happen to ingest glucose oxidase, induce vomiting by sticking a finger in your throat. Loosen tight clothing. It is highly recommended that you see a doctor afterwards to determine if some tissues were damaged. This may involve a few medical tests.

Glucose oxidase can damage the lungs and respiratory system if inhaled.

Body systems harmed by glucose oxidase

Remember that glucose oxidase’s mommy is a fungus. That in itself should give you an idea of how healthy it can be if taken incorrectly. Health groups highly regulate the substance and say that it is safe if manufactured properly. Nevertheless, glucose oxidase is an irritant and can damage the skin, eyes, lungs, and stomach.

Where to learn more


Glucose oxidase is used as a food preservative in bread and pastry products. It is derived from a fungus and is believed to be safe when manufactured correctly. Improper use of the compound can cause harm to the skin, eyes, and lungs.

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