What is Citric Acid?
Citric acid is a substance that can naturally be found in citrus fruits. It is considered a weak and inorganic acid that easily mixes with a variety of liquids. Because of its dissolving properties, citric acid is commonly used in the food and softdrinks industry. It gives off the characteristic sour or acidic taste in food items and softdrink products.
Much of citric acid can be found on lemon and lime varieties of fruit. Other citrus fruits and some vegetables also contain significant amounts of citric acid in them, but lemons and limes are considered the most abundant sources of this substance. It is even said that as much as 8% of the fruit’s weight is from its citric acid content.
Citric acid is typically produced in a white powder form which may be a monohydrate type or an anhydrous type. Monohydrates are those that result from crystallization using cold water while anhydrous type involves the use of hot water in the crystallization of citric acid.
There are many uses for citric acid especially in the food and beverage industries. It is most commonly used as food additive or flavoring to softdrinks, beer, and other juice preparations. But aside from serving as flavoring, citric acid also has other properties that make it valuable as environmental cleaners. Citric acid is also widely used in the manufacture of dietary supplements. Because of its bonding properties with other minerals, many supplements use the help of citric acid to help improve absorption of these minerals in the body. Other uses of citric acid are in the making of bath products like soaps, detergents, and shampoo. Citric acid is also used in the manufacture of skin creams, lotions, and other beauty or skin-care products. These products are also often marketed as natural and healthy as Vitamin C in general is a powerful anti-oxidant.