Citric acid (also known as Citrate) is a weak organic acid naturally found in plants and animals, particularly in citrus fruits. It is known as a commodity chemical and most commonly used as a preservative and flavour enhancer. It has the chemical formula C6H8O7 and a molecular weight of 192.12 g/mol.
Citric Acid (Anhydrous) Benefits and Uses
Citric acid is commercially produced through mycological fermentation from a bacteria called Aspergillus niger. This weak acid is commonly used as a stabilizer and a preservative in packaged foods and pharmaceuticals.
Citrate – related to Citric acid – plays an essential role in the “citric acid cycle” or TCA/Krebs cycle, a metabolic pathway involved in the production of cellular energy. It consists of a series of chemical reactions which transform stored energy into useable energy (ATP) through the oxidation of nutrients.
Anecdotal evidence suggests that supplementing with Citric acid may enhance absorption of nutrients and minerals (e.g. Magnesium and Calcium) and increase energy levels.
Citric acid supplements are also known by a few different names, including:
- E 330
- Citric acid (anhydrous)
- 2-hydroxypropane-1,2,3-tricarboxylic acid
- Tricarboxylic acid
- 2-Hydroxytricarballylic acid
- 3-Carboxy-3-hydroxypentane-1,5-dioic Acid
- Monoglyceride citrate
Supplementing with this product is likely to be safe for adults at doses of 0.1g/kg of body weight per day. Further research is required to fully understand the significance of its benefits and adverse effects.
Citric acid may cause mild side effects such as an upset stomach and bloating, as well as skin or eye irritation when applied topically. There is not enough data to say whether Citric acid is safe for pregnant or breastfeeding women, or if it can be used by children.