Dog Food Ingredients A to Z: Xanthan Gum

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We continue our Dog Food Ingredients A to Z series with the letter “X”. Today’s ingredient is Xanthan Gum.

 

What is Xanthan Gum?

Xanthan gum is a polysaccharide (sugar like compound) produced by bacterial fermentation of a sugar-containing medium.  Nutritionally speaking, it is a carbohydrate with about seven grams of fiber per tablespoon.

 

Common names for Xanthan Gum

The most commonly used name is xanthan.  Other names include xantham gum, corn sugar gum and bacterial polysaccharide.

 

Why is Xanthan Gum included in dog food?

Xanthan gum is used as a thickening and suspending agent in wet or canned dog foods.   It has little nutritional value.

 

Is Xanthan Gum a commonly used ingredient in dog food?

Xanthan gum is starting to gain in popularity and is in a little over 6% of all dog foods. It has a low glycemic index and can be marketed as ‘gluten free’, which could be the reason why it is gaining popularity with pet food manufacturers.

 

Common benefits or risks of Xanthan Gum

Several studies have shown that xanthan gum is  ‘safe’ in normal doses, for humans and pets.  That said, xanthan gum requires a ‘medium’ to grow and often the medium of choice is a carbohydrate like corn, soy, dairy, or wheat, all of which are potentially allergenic substances, especially if fed over long periods of time.

 

Miscellaneous facts about Xanthan Gum

Xanthan gum is used to stabilize and bind cosmetic products.

In human foods, xanthan gum is most often found in salad dressings and sauces because it helps to prevent oil separation.

 

slimdoggy frownSlimdoggy Ingredient Comfort Level

Xanthan gum gets the Slimdoggy Sad Face due to its lack of nutritional value and because it has the potential to facilitate allergic reactions in some pets.

 

Sources and further reading

http://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2013/04/15/xantham-gum.aspx

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9763683

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0041008X73901786
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We’re joining the Tasty Tuesday Blog Hop sponsored by Sugar, the Golden Retriever and Kolchak from Kol’s Notes:

 

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14 Comments

  1. We didn’t think you could do X.

    O, we of little faith.
    jan recently posted…It’s called curling…My Profile

  2. So after Z, do you start with numbers…then you could go on forever 😉 This X gum stuff brings to mind a point Mom is always making. Someone needs to develop gum for dogs. She figures if she gave Bailie a piece of “dog gum” when we walk, she wouldn’t need to try to eat everything on the road as her mouth would already be busy. We just need a developer for our idea.
    emma recently posted…What’s Your Routine? | GBGV | Tasty TuesdayMy Profile

  3. Wow didn’t know this was in some dog foods. I love the sad face don’t know if I saw Slimdoggy sad face before. We don’t want Slimdoggy to be sad. Lets remember since we see a gum package that xylitol is toxic to dogs so don’t let your doggys get into your sugarfree gum.
    Sand Spring Chesapeakes recently posted…Tuesday Tail’s~RoxyMy Profile

  4. I came by to also see the X 🙂 Awesome info about xanthan
    Ruckus the Eskie recently posted…Kuchen Meister Liqueur Cake Trap!My Profile

  5. I didn’t realize this was even in dog food! Sad face from Slim means sad face from our pack!
    Happy tasty Tuesday!
    ((husky hugz))
    Jenna,Mark “HuskyCrazed” Drady recently posted…Husky vs bananaMy Profile

  6. X-cellent entry for X, and x-cellent information. I hope Y turns Slimdoggy’s frown into a smile. 🙂
    Miss Harper Lee recently posted…I Died and Went to HeavenMy Profile

  7. Thank you for another interesting dog food ingredient post! That does deserve a frowning sad face. Good job on getting the attention of Lab enthusiasts! It is so cool that you can make a difference!
    M. K. Clinton recently posted…PetBox and Tuesday’s TailsMy Profile

  8. I think the Slimdoggy face looks more pissed off than sad! LOL….that’s OK, he should be po’d when they put nasty stuff in his food!
    I know I have heard of this one, but I’m not sure if I’ve seen it on my pet food labels or my own salad dressing or something….but I’ll definitely be looking for it now!
    Thanks, as always, for such great information!
    Jan K recently posted…Monday Mischief – More Snow GamesMy Profile

  9. Good job on finding an “x”. Sounds like this is one ingredient to be cautious about.
    2 brown dawgs recently posted…Wordless Wednesday–Sun And ShadowMy Profile

  10. I love the Slim Doggy sad face. Please tell me they will be part of the new human nutritional labeling.
    Pamela recently posted…Dog World Problems – No Puppy InsuranceMy Profile

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