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Formaldehyde, whose chemical formula is HCHO or CH2O, and whose molecular weight is 30.03, is a colorless gas with a special irritating odor that has a stimulating effect on eyes and nose. Formaldehyde can be obtained by dehydrogenation or oxidation of methanol under the catalysis of a metal such as silver or copper, or by a hydrocarbon oxidation product. It is widely used as a pesticide and disinfectant, as well as raw materials for phenolic resin, urea-formaldehyde resin, vinylon, urotropine, pentaerythritol and dyes. Industrial formaldehyde solution generally contains 37% formaldehyde and 15% methanol as a polymerization inhibitor with a boiling point of 101 ℃. On October 27, 2017, the World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer published a preliminary list of carcinogens, and formaldehyde was included.
The Harm of Formaldehyde to the Human Body
First, formaldehyde can cause cancer. High concentrations of formaldehyde can cause serious damage to human organs and even cause cancer. Long-term living in an environment with formaldehyde gas can cause great harm to human internal organs. At the same time, it is harmful to the respiratory system. Formaldehyde mainly enters the body through the breathing of the nose, and the most direct damage is to the respiratory system. If you inhale too much formaldehyde, it will seriously irritate the human respiratory tract, causing difficulty in breathing and even death. In addition, it can cause various diseases, such as chronic respiratory diseases, chest tightness, nervous system paralysis, low immunity, motor dysfunction, and a certain degree of damage to the sense of smell and vision.
Formaldehyde are also naturally occurring in foods. For example, the natural formaldehyde content of fruits and aquatic products can reach up to 30 mg/kg. The International Food Development Council stipulates that the formaldehyde limit in cheese is 25 mg/kg. The EU limits the formaldehyde migration limit of food packaging materials to 15 mg/kg. Generally, the formaldehyde content in candy is very low, and consequently brings almost no harm to the human body.
Source of Formaldehyde in Candy
Most formaldehyde is naturally occurring. Formaldehyde in natural foods is mainly derived from the physiological metabolism of cells during the growth of plants and animals. Amino acids, sugars, esters and other ingredients in foods are automatically oxidized or decomposed by natural factors such as light, or the action of microorganism form formaldehyde. At the same time, in the food production process, fat will undergo oxidative decomposition, chemical bond breakage of glucose fructose, and the Maillard reaction will produce formaldehyde. Of course, formaldehyde pollution caused by some food accessories and packaging containers is not excluded. Therefore, the source of formaldehyde in candy is multifaceted. We should consider many aspects, try to reduce the formaldehyde pollution from the source and ultimately alleviates the harm of formaldehyde to the human body.
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