The chemical, Diacetyl, is a yellow liquid with an intense buttery flavor. It can be a by-product of fermentation and can be seen in some alcoholic beverages. In other cases, it is placed in some delicacies in a bid to improve the food’s flavor.
How is diacetyl bad?
Diacetyl may have a tasty buttery flavor to it, but it’s far from being healthy. Diacetyl is known to affect the eyes, throat, nose, skin, and lungs. Initially, you may not notice the symptoms until time goes on, and then it worsens.
Being exposed to diacetyl consistently force the nose to sting, the eyes to burn, and the throat to be inflamed. Diacetyl is so toxic that if it gets into your eyes, it can lead to burning, which requires emergency attention. Is that all? It’s just starting, as Diacetyl is known to cause rashes and irritate the skin greatly.
What of the respiratory problems that it causes like breathlessness, wheezing though you are not cold and persistent cough.
Once you are no longer exposed to it, one would think that the symptoms would fade out on its own, but that’s far from the truth. It could lead to irreversible damage in your lungs, and sometimes, may worsen the need for a lung transplant. If care is not taken, it could deteriorate to death.
How Does Diacetyl End Up In Products?
Since it has a buttery flavor, a lot of food manufacturers love to use it to give their refined foods a better taste. It is added to popcorn to add buttery flavor.
Manufacturers of butter flavoring, buttery flavored oil and margarine add diacetyl to give them the buttery feel; otherwise, they may be tasteless. No client wants to munch on tasteless foods. It is only naturally occurring in some alcoholic beverages, apart from that, the manufacturers put in there themselves.
Where Is Diacetyl Found?
Diacetyl is naturally occurring in alcoholic beverages. You can see the compound in the following:
In e-cigarette, Diacetyl is used to flavor the e-liquid, and those exposed to the vapor can be at risk of suffering from one of its ailments.
In alcoholic beverages
The level of diacetyl seen in alcohol is usually at low levels. That slipperiness feel of the alcohol on the tongue is caused by diacetyl. Once it is increased in alcohol, it can lead to the butterscotch taste.
A low level of diacetyl is sometimes allowed in beer, depending on the beer. If it is Scottish ales, English bitters or stouts, it is present there.
How Can You Recognize It on labels?
The law states that food or liquor manufacturers have to state if their products have diacetyl. You can check the label of the product for diacetyl.
Help, I need my popcorn fix
Don’t worry, I got you. Contrary to opinion popcorn kernels are wicked easy to make in the microwave and even the stovetop.
All you need is a microwavable bowl, preferably glass, some popcorn kernels, and a plate to cover the bowl. Simply add about 1/4 cup of popcorn kernels in a bowl, cover with a plate and set the microwave to about 4 minutes. This time will vary greatly depending on the microwave you have so the trick is to stop microwave when popping has slowed down.
There is no need for any butter, but if you need butter, you can quickly melt your own and drizzle on top of the popcorn. There is no need for fake butter used in microwavable popcorn.