Potassium metaphosphate, also called potassium polymetaphosphate or potassium polyphosphate, is a compound of several phosphates and appears as colorless and odorless crystals or powder. It is derived from monopotassium phosphate and could slowly dissolve in water. In food industry, it often used as fatter emulsifier, humectant, sequestrant, texturizer, thickener and texture modifier mainly in seafood flavors.
It is a gluten free additive that adds sour taste to processed food. It could stabilize, thicken and regulate the acidity and moisture in foods, therefore it often used in soft and alcoholic drinks, fresh and canned meats, process meats like sausages and ham, dried vegetables, chewing gum, chocolate products, cereals, candies, dairy products and baked goods. Basically, potassium could be find in almost all food, especially in meat products.
In general, potassium metaphosphate is safe for most people within approriate amount. However, it could be absorbed by the body quicker than those naturally found in foods, therefore, people with kidney disease who need to control the phosphate level might want to be more careful and get doctor’s suggestion before choosing the food or supplements containing potassium metaphosphate.
What worth people’s attention is that too much phosphorus intake could increase the probabilities of heart disease and morality, even in people who have normal kidney function.
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