What is BHA?

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BHA or butylated hydroxyanisole is a substance derived from isobutylene and 4-methoxyphenol. This substance is commonly used as a food preservative. Its main action is to prevent food from spoiling by means of its anti-oxidant properties. Food will naturally spoil and have bad odors when they are stored for long periods. By adding BHA, the rancidification process of food will be stopped and no foul smell will result. BHA is also able to control free radicals that are common in the fat content of many food items.

The chemical BHA is preferred when preserving food with fat content. This substance is also fat-soluble making it ideal in preserving fat. Meats and butter for example contain lots of fat and many of them can be preserved with BHA. Through BHA, the food item will remain to have a pleasant color and small. Food flavors are also preserved through the action of BHA or butylated hydroxyanisole. Other food items that may contain BHA include baked food items, junk food, and even beer.

BHA is also a chemical that is used in other industries besides the food industry. The manufacture of plastics and petroleum processing for example also use BHA. With these uses in other industries, many experts have warned the health effects of this chemical ingredient in food items. This substance is even banned in many countries when it comes to its use as preservative for food products. This chemical substance is considered by many as a health concern and even carcinogenic. Exposure to this substance is said to partly cause various respiratory illnesses. BHA has also the reputation of being bad for the body’s vital organs like the liver and kidneys. There are studies that show BHA’s alarming health risk to animal subjects. This substance is often labelled as highly toxic and carcinogenic in high quantities.

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