Healthy Living

What is Citric Acid? A Hidden GMO?

September 8, 2013

What is Citric Acid

I have seen this ingredient in many products at the food store, including the organic section. Sometimes the list of ingredients looks perfect to me, until I get to the last one: Citric Acid.

That ingredient always gave me pause. So after looking at my thousandth organic salsa, organic hummus, and every other snack known to man – I became frustrated! What the heck is this weird ingredient? This is why I am writing this post, to see what’s the deal with this all-too-common additive.

In my head I picture lemon juice…and I wasn’t too far off, but my research also popped up a few things that are of interest.

What is Citric Acid?

Citric acid is found in so many things and is used in so many processes: from shampoo to soda to cheese to beer making to candy to medicine to varnish remover. Citric acid is derived from an acid found in many citrus fruits – it is quite tart, which is why it is used in sour candies and gummies to emulate the flavor of real sour lemon or lime. It is also used to balance the pH of food and preserve it for longer periods of time.

Citric acid is usually found as a white, powdery substance which has been described to taste similar to lemon juice.

So why is citric acid used? An article from the TLC website explains:

Citric acid, an organic acid found in many fruits, especially limes, lemons and grapefruits…increases the acidity of a microbe’s environment, making it harder for bacteria and mold to survive and reproduce. It can also be used to bind to and neutralize fat-degrading metal ions that get into food via processing machinery.” (source)

How is it Processed?

Okay, so it comes from fruit, right? I mean, that makes the most sense, right? I was mistaken and found it interesting that most citric acid used is made synthetically by the fermentation of glucose. Then I came across this tidbit:

“The ability of the mold Aspergillus niger to produce citric acid as a byproduct of metabolism was discovered by American food chemist James Currie in 1917. The process of cultivating A. niger and allowing it to metabolize sucrose or glucose to yield citric acid proved efficient and inexpensive. Once it was possible to produce a seemingly endless supply of citric acid, companies like Pfizer and Citrique Belge began producing it on an industrial scale. This same technique is used to produce citric acid today.” (source)

With a little digging, I came across many things that said citric acid can potentially be produced with the aid of GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms). The process of making this citric acid utilizes sugar beets and maize, which are some of the biggest offenders of Genetically Modified foods here in the States. Also, there are some genetically modified strains of A. Niger – but I am not sure to what extent these strains are being used to produce citric acid in our food suppy. But companies aren’t required to label that, even in USDA Organic Label foods. (source)

Citric acid is a part food science, only sometimes coming from the delicious grapefruit, lemon, or lime. Big companies are now using GM-products to get higher yields since extracting from the actual citrus fruit is too expensive. Here is a list from the Non-GMO Project sharing common additives made with GM-processes:

 “Common Ingredients Derived from GMO Risk Crops
Amino Acids, Aspartame, Ascorbic Acid, Sodium Ascorbate, Vitamin C, Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, Ethanol, Flavorings (“natural” and “artificial”), High-Fructose Corn Syrup, Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein, Lactic Acid, Maltodextrins, Molasses, Monosodium Glutamate, Sucrose, Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP), Xanthan Gum, Vitamins, Yeast Products.” (source)

Don’t know what GMO’s are? Read this.

Should We Consume Citric Acid?

I personally will avoid Citric Acid as much as possible, since it is not required to be labeled as being produced with GM-processes and products. But if you are interested in using or consuming citric acid (such as for cheesemaking), really do your research and find a non-GMO based citric acid.

Even if you buy organic, the citric acid in that organic food can be made with GM-products and processes unless explicitly labeled. When in doubt, call the company that manufactures that food and find out what they use. Or, better yet, make it homemade if possible!

The Take-Away

Due to some negative and downright extremely nasty comments from all over the internet, I have decided to add this part of the post to magnify the important take-aways (9/10/13).

Whether or not you agree that the end product of citric acid is anything but citric acid, the point of my post is that at least here in the States it is impossible to know what is in our food supply unless you grow it or raise it yourself. I personally think that people need to really start asking the tough questions, like “What am I putting into my body?” and “What the heck is in my food?”

Whether you believe the end product contains GMOs or not is irrelevant; our food industry is supporting Genetically Modified foods. They are messing with our food on a genetic level. I personally believe that God made our food the way it is on purpose, and I don’t need a scientist to splice it any which way.

This is another huge reason I avoid citric acid. I don’t want to support GMOs, and I’d much rather have a true, citrus fruit in my food.

Being educated about your food, is much different than being fearful of it.

Will  you continue to eat Citric Acid? Why or Why Not?

Sources: Citric Acid & What is Citric Acid, How Stuff Works: Citric Acid, TLC: Top 10 Most Common Ingredients in Fast Food, Non-GMO Project,,
This post is a part Thank Good It’s Monday, Homestead Barn Hop, Allergy-Free Wednesday, Fat Tuesday, Party Wave Wednesday, Real Food Wednesday, Thank Your Body Thursdays, Fight Back Fridays, DIY Linky.

PAID ENDORSEMENT DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only ever endorse products that are in alignment with Girl Meets Nourishment's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. You may read my full disclosure statements here.

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  • Reply Jane September 8, 2013 at 6:41 am

    We are teaching our 6 & 8 year old boys to read labels and have come across this many times. I also assumed it came from lemon juice and was fine, especially in the organic foods we buy. Thank you for posting this and we will be sure to watch out for it in the future.

    • Reply Katie September 8, 2013 at 10:05 am

      Thanks Jane!

      I was shocked when I was researching this, but I am glad to know now. Hopefully someday everything will be labeled explicitly, it would take a lot of the guesswork out of eating healthy.

      Best of health!

      • Reply Cathie February 18, 2014 at 6:52 pm

        I have been allergic or intolerant to citric acid since 2008 and perhaps longer. Immediately after eating anything with citric acid, ascorbic acid or any other chemical substitute for vitamin C- I get blisters in my mouth and vomiting and diarrhea until I get it out of my system. It is becoming more and more prevalent all the time and it has gotten to the point that eating is a real challenge. Please help fight against GMOs and encourage proper food labeling. Some of us are really suffering!

        • Reply sheila February 23, 2014 at 6:10 am

          Ladies I am at my starting point of being sick for the 7th week in a row. I jused ocean spray cranberry juice because I got a sudden bladder infection out of nowhere. Getting better so got 2nd bottle, it wasn’t ocean spray but the price was right and it was right beside ocean spray. I am legally blind, so was mad with myself for picking the wrong one, but thought, it’s the same thing right? I now have a very painful mouth and throat of blisters, spontaneous vomiting for no apparent reason and vicious d strips to the wc. Now I know why!I immediately looked at the label because nothing else was new in my diet and the only ingredient that glared at me was citric acid. I was dumbfounded. I am paying the price. I am in agony since last friday. Asthma is really bad, teeth are screaming at me and my tonsils? Yeah they are not happy with Momma! For valentines my partner brought Coca cola and fanta into the house, I couldn’t believe that for the first time it felt like I had a stomach ulcer after the C drink. So I switched to the f drink. Whoa! So sick. Looking back this a,m I realized this accumulation in me has been going on since 2007. I am SO sensitized to EVERYTHING now. What’s a girl to do? How do you detox and then start over? Thank you so much for this post. I have tears flowing down my face, the Drs tried to tell me nothings wrong I’m just one of THOSE (Nut job) patients with a simpering smirk. I knew damn fine I am not.

          • Katie February 25, 2014 at 9:51 am

            Hello Sheila,

            I am so sorry to hear about your discomfort and struggle! That sounds like no fun at all! I have a post here that I made for the new year that has some great detoxifying posts to get you started. It should arm you with what you need to take the first few steps. I hope that you feel better very soon!



          • Suzie Zenker April 12, 2014 at 5:59 am

            I understnd you pain…I just recently committed to laying down anything but organic goods for 30 days. This was a HUGE deal for me because prior to this I NEVER ate any vegetables and consumed pounds and pounds of sugar. By “accident” I met someone who’s doing a program called 30-days 2 Fit and decided to give it a whirl. I have nothing to lose and everything to gain…plus I figured I can do anything for 30-days. Amazing how much different I feel already, amazing!! For more information go to, watch the video and go to the “Changing Lives” tab. I wish you good health and awakening as I’ve had…

      • Reply KC October 23, 2014 at 8:07 pm

        http://www.differencebetw/ I was trying to look up the dif between citric acid and vit C and acsorbic acid…eeesh! A lot of criss cross info out there-confusion. also found one site that said citric acid is dried vinegar. wonder if vinegar is considered “man made”?

      • Reply Colette Tadi November 1, 2014 at 6:41 am

        I started a new Mediterranean food processing business a year ago called Murex Cuisine in Washington state. I do all the cooking myself, and that was the time when I started my research about food preservatives and I was shocked like you were when I found out about Citric Acid and what it is made of; so now I don’t use any preservatives in my food. I squeeze my own lemon juice, it is more expensive but at least I know I am using what god created for us to eat. I teach Mediterranean cooking, my number one campaign in my class now is about Citric Acid and the harm it causes to us and to our children. Can you imagine they even use it in canned baby’s food. This is criminal, someone has to do something about it. No wonder CANCER is spreading that fast in the United States. FDA approved citric acid as natural, “NATURAL” is when t hey can’t get an approval as organic, that’s how they can get away with it.
        Thank you Katie for spreading the word.

        • Reply Katie November 1, 2014 at 12:55 pm

          Thank you for sharing, Colette! :)

  • Reply Tiffany September 8, 2013 at 10:30 am

    I could have sworn that I’ve read that if a product is labeled Organic then it is supposed to be free of GMO’s. I’m curious about this loophole.

  • Reply Danielle September 8, 2013 at 10:44 am

    We try really hard to read labels and not consume citric acid. I use lemon juice instead of citric acid in all of our home canning recipes. However, I find it difficult to find food at the store that doesn’t contain citric acid. Items have to have it during preservation in order to have high enough acidity levels to be shelf stable. Unless I am capable of making ALL of our consumables (a goal we hope to someday reach, but impossible where we live) this is one I’m going to have to let go. I think there is a fine line between label reading and obsession, this one borders on obsession.

    We have to eat. I can’t produce everything we consume, so I have to decide between feeding my family a small amount (generally a Tablespoon per quart) of potentially GMO product, or not feed them any preserved foods that I have not made myself. Unless we completely change our diet to eat all fresh foods (I don’t have that kind of time all the time), we are more than likely going to have to consume it every now and again in the small quantities it is served to us. I have to take that chance, and the amount is so inconsequential, I’m willing to take that risk for now….

    • Reply Katie September 8, 2013 at 12:31 pm

      Hi Danielle,

      The point of my post is bring attention to the fact that the citric acid that is in food, including organic, contains GMO products. I believe it is completely up to you to choose what you feed your family. My husband and I try to only eat whole, fresh foods and avoid canned and preserved products as often as possible.

      I personally do not think wanting to learn about what is in our food supply is obsession, considering that it is not labeled. I write these posts to help others who want to learn more about what is in their food.

      Best of luck!

      • Reply Danielle September 8, 2013 at 2:29 pm

        We try to eat whole unprocessed food as well. My point of calling it an obsession is that the amount is incredibly negligible. It is generally LESS than a teaspoon (1/2 teaspoon per quart, not the tablespoon I specified earlier). I don’t see us being completely self sufficient, self-sustaining people anytime soon. I try to preserve and can all of the food I may need for a winter myself, however, lets face it, that isn’t always possible. To say you are going to avoid it at all costs is borderline obsession in my opinion. I don’t like that I occasionally may consume GM food, but I’m not going to stop buying the occasional jar of salsa or pound of cheese or any other commercially preserved food just because I may consume an incredibly tiny amount.
        Learning what is in our food supply is important, but avoiding GM food is almost impossible, as you have noted. There are tons of loopholes for organically labeled foods. Obviously my point is moot and I will stop beating a dead horse but avoiding a negligible amount of food is obsessive.

        • Reply Katie September 8, 2013 at 3:11 pm

          We can agree to disagree, thank you for sharing and I do wish you the best in all your ventures. :)

        • Reply katherine January 27, 2014 at 8:04 am

          I agree with how difficult it is to find whole, clean foods and while the amount of citric acid in any one product may be a very small amount, when that small amount is consumed from many different products, it adds up to being more than a small amount. I’d still rather be informed than not :-)

        • Reply Cathie February 18, 2014 at 7:04 pm

          If it made you as sick as it does me you might have a different attitude. This I know…Six years ago when I started being intolerant to citric acid, ascorbic acid etc. there was very little on the internet as to what I was experiencing (mouth ulcers, swollen lips, vomiting and diarrhea, even swollen lymph nodes). Now I see many people experience a myriad of symptoms and it is certainly becoming more common. At this time reactions such as mine seem to be rare but I assure you- it will become more common. They are poisoning us with our food!

          • Megan February 19, 2014 at 9:56 am

            Msg/citric acid/free glutamates affect the body on a cellular level. If your body has difficulty contains the free glutamates, it isn’t necessarily about the quantity, although when you consider how many things contain it, one can get quite a load from ingesting several things in one meal. But as someone who has recently become aware of my issues with it, I can say that my health is much better now that I’ve learned how to avoid it.

          • Jocelyn February 19, 2014 at 10:16 am

            Cathie – I don’t have as extreme symptoms as you do, but mine have consistently worsened as I’ve gotten older. You may have the same allergy as I (and it looks like some others in this thread) do. I recently was tested and discovered an allergy to aspergillus – a strain of this mold (aspergillus niger) is used to make citric acid. It along with other strains of that same mold is also used to make (among other things) corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, light beers, soy sauce, sake, and a myriad of other soy-based products. What was alarming to me is that after discovering that aspergillus was the sole item I was allergic to, and after asking my allergist if it was possible for it to have gotten into my food, she said that I shouldn’t worry about going down that path. But my gut told me that my crazy, seemingly unconnected, food intolerances and frequent lifelong sinus issues might actually have something to do with this. So I ignored her and Googled it anyway. There is shockingly little info online, but what I have found confirmed that this mold is in practically everything that’s packaged or bottled. Another horrible discovery is that the citric acid made from aspergillus niger is used as a ripening agent for many cheeses — but the FDA doesn’t require it to be listed on the label, so I’m flying blind there. My groceries have become a little pricier, but I’m attempting a month long cleanse of all of the foods and juices that contain or may contain any of the ingredients I’ve discovered. I’m curious to see how I feel after 30 days, and I desperately miss cheese. (Wish me luck!)

            Still, this alerts me to a related issue. Why is it that even the medical community whose sole purpose is to diagnose and treat people with allergy symptoms (chemical, food, or otherwise) isn’t thinking outside the box when it comes to bioengineered ingredients that have been added to our food? How disturbing is that?! My allergist told me what I was allergic to, but Google has been far more helpful to me in trying to avoid it. And Google didn’t cost me a Specialist copay.

            Have I become, as a previous commenter noted, “obsessive” about aspergillus (citric acid, HFCS, soy, etc…)? Yes. Dear God yes. But I sincerely believe that the obsessive way with which I investigate this will ultimately allow me to lead a healthy, well-balanced life. And if any info I discover may be of use to someone else, that’s all the better.

          • Katie February 19, 2014 at 11:05 am

            Thank you for sharing, Jocelyn!

          • JP September 5, 2014 at 7:00 am

            As terrible as your experiences have been with citric acid, there is a very good chance that your body wouldn’t be able to tolerate it even if you made it completely organic. I too try to avoid GM products, but I think your body’s intolerance is associated with the acid.

    • Reply gmoprotectionleague November 10, 2013 at 7:26 am

      Danielle everyone has their own opinions however trying to avoid gmo’s is not an obsession though I do understand the spin you have put on it, that for some it seems excessive because it’s a tiny amount. Some of us really strive to keep our bodies 100% free of any/all types of gmos.

      To want to protect our bodies from a corn that is so heavily sprayed with pesticides and chemicals (and to boycott a seed produced by a company with a despicable track record of pollution and cover-ups and government influence) is never an obsession. We are paying the extra money for the organic label and should not have to be doing all of this detective work over this issue anymore, it’s friggen ridiculous. It’s stress and it doesn’t fare well with any of us. We are FED UP and the more we band together and stop supporting companies that add this non-necessary hidden gmo ingredient the sooner a change will come!

      For anyone else who cares and doesn’t feel its an obsession but a healthy concern, I can recommend Bionaturae and Eden foods for canned tomatoes that do not contain this citric acid ingredient. Keep searching for those companies who don’t add it, you can find just about anything without it if you search hard enough :)

      Be well :)

  • Reply Tracy September 9, 2013 at 8:36 am

    So what about foods that come under the special NON-GMO Project? Are they safe? I have been doing my best to only use those.

    • Reply Katie September 9, 2013 at 8:50 am

      Hi Tracy,

      Here is some more information on the Non-GMO Project – from my understanding they truly verify that every ingredient in the list is GMO-free and produced GMO-free. But if you ever have any doubts, I say call the food company and ask about the products they use. :)

      Thanks for stopping by!

  • Reply Kimberly September 9, 2013 at 8:46 am

    I agree with Danielle on this one. Sorry, but avoiding this ingredient would be almost impossible unless you ate only homemade preserved items and fresh food all the time. I am wonder woman, but I’m not a God. haha I make our own bread, jams, etc. but good lord…this is one of those things that I’ll wait on “voting with my dollars” until some other more gnarly stuff is taken out of our regular food supply. I won’t be avoiding citric acid the same way I avoid hydrogenated oils or high fructose corn syrup. If the volume of it were increased, then it might be another story. Hopefully I won’t be the one eating my words if they discover that this kind of citric acid is the cause of all the cancer we have nowadays! I can only hope.

  • Reply Amanda September 9, 2013 at 8:57 am

    I’ve noticed it a lot lately in several of the organic foods I purchase. Perfect world, when folks make food they claim to be healthy they would in fact be healthy. But I’ve learned that most anything you purchase out of a store will have something in it you wish wasn’t there. I’ve decided that you gotta live at some point and not worry too much. Worry is almost more dangerous. I try to eat homemade and fresh foods when possible. I try to avoid the citric acid, but if it’s there I’ll deal.

  • Reply Sharon September 9, 2013 at 2:14 pm

    I am highly allergic to citric acid and have been for 30 years – it causes my throat to close. I am also allergic to mold – so that makes sense after reading this article. It is in everything.

  • Reply Mepster September 9, 2013 at 2:24 pm

    Unfortunately, you don’t have the whole story and to spread information like it is truth is not a good thing. Not all citric acid is derived from GMO products. As a matter of fact, many of the manufacturers overseas, including Citrique Belge that you mention, does not use GMO’s in the manufacturer of Citric acid. They do use A niger and can ferment it with corn, beets, waxy maize, or cane. Not all of these product are GMO. Many of the beets and sugar cane or not GM. Nothing in the production process uses GM material. Hence, the citric acid is GMO free. I know this, because I sell Citric for many different manufacturers worldwide and many have independent agencies certifying their product does not use GM products in the process.
    As for organic. To the best of my knowledge, there are no organically certified mfg’s of Citric Acid. However, do to the organic certification process, and product can be classified as Organic compliant. Due to the process, production, and growing of the crops, the products can be classified as organic compliant. Does that make it as stringent as a true organic certification, no, but there have been reputable organic certifying agencies that have certified citric as organic compliant. If these strict agencies are ok with it and have done their homework, who of us is to say it shouldn’t be used or can go in organic products.
    Just want the full story to be revealed as I have nothing to gain.
    Be well,

    • Reply Katie September 9, 2013 at 4:13 pm

      Hello Mepster,

      I never said that Citrique Belge used GMO products in their production, that was a quoted source explaining the processing of citric acid. I also specified that not all citric acid is GM – however, at least in the states and from what I have found from a majority of sources, is that GM corn and sugar beets are used in the processing of citric acid. Also, the A. Niger bacteria can now also be genetically modified. I also never stated that there was organic citric acid available, only companies that specify that their citric acid is made without GMOs in the process. I believe it is up to the consumer to call the manufacture to find out how the ingredients in their food is prepared.

      I would love to see some sources as to better understand your point-of-view and the manufacturer you work for.

      Here are two more journal articles that talk about the use of citric acid with GM A. Niger and yeast:

      I never post articles with the intention of claiming it to be 100% my way or no way – I always encourage my readers to dig into and research things on their own. This is the research that I have done. All I am trying to do is find the truth behind what is in the American food supply.

      I appreciate you taking the time to share,

      • Reply Mepster September 9, 2013 at 5:35 pm

        You may not have said all in your statements, but you did insinuate that the products are GM. Following is your text:

        “So guess what this means? It is produced with the aid of GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms). The process of making this citric acid utilizes sugar beets and maize, which are usually Genetically Modified. But companies aren’t required to label that, even in USDA Organic Label foods.
        Citric acid is now a food science, no longer coming from the delicious grapefruit, lemon, or lime. Big companies are now using GM-products to get higher yields since extracting from the actual citrus fruit is too expensive. ” Produced with the aid of GMOs, utilizes…which are usually GM, Big companies are now using GM-products to get higher yields–each of these statements make it sound like fact–when in reality it isn’t. Plus your title, “What is Citric Acid.?.. a hidden GMO”– makes it sound like fact.

        As for the A. niger being used, yes, there is some GM A. niger but it is not the commercially used material. The websites quoted were for very specific applications, not your normal usage for most fermentation applications. In most cases, A. niger is grown in large commercial petri dishes and is used widely to make many different products. A very beneficial fungus.

        I don’t believe I said you said Citrique product was GMO. I stated that Citrique along with other overseas mfg’s don’t have a GMO product. You are correct in that many of the domestic mfg’s of citric use GM corn to make their product so they don’t claim GM free. I agree with you in that it is difficult for a consumer to know if they are getting ingredients that are GM. There are many that are GM, but there are many that are not. And the listing on Non GMO project is not accurate. Some of those ingredients can be GM but many are not. It is a matter of having all the facts not just various “soundbites” from the internet.

        I didn’t say you said there was organic product available. I was just making you aware what is available and how manufacturers of organic food items can use citric acid in their organic products. Also, as an aside to your readers, citric hasn’t been made commercially using citrus fruit for well over 75 years.

        My knowledge comes from selling Citric Acid for 28 years from sources all over the world–from the USA, Belgium, China, Brazil, Indonesia, and Thailand, to name just a few countries. I have visited a number of Citric plants and we keep thorough documentation on all the products we sell and most plants utilize 3rd party audits for process certification as well as their own internal audits. I am sorry to say, but I can not list those companies or their documents. But rest assured, the facts are accurate and spoken with much knowledge.

        • Reply Katie September 9, 2013 at 6:26 pm

          Hello again Mepster,

          Thank you for taking the time to lend your thoughts to this discussion. The fact that even some of the companies that manufacture citric acid use GMOs in any form leads me to believe that some of the citric acid in our food supply is genetically modified. We have agreed that there are ways to source citric acid from manufacturers that ensure it is not GM (as I mentioned in my post). However what give me pause is the fact that the companies that are not GMO-free are not required to label it as such. I feel confident that my readers will make a decision that is right for them and their families on this subject.

          One of the points of this post, that I feel very strongly about, is the fact that the foods (at least here in America) are not labeled honestly. And I hope and pray people will stand up and take responsibility to know what they are putting into their bodies.

          I do appreciate you taking the time to add to this discussion and I wish you the best in all your future ventures,

          • Timhole October 30, 2014 at 12:28 pm

            Acid can’t be genetically modified because, acid doesn’t have genes to modify.

          • Katie October 31, 2014 at 11:30 am

            You are missing the point of my post, I believe.

      • Reply Maddy October 4, 2014 at 2:51 pm

        It might only be a mistake on your part, but one that, if you knew your stuff, you’d not make: A. niger, as it says in your original post, is a mold, i.e. a fungus, not a bacterium. The distinction may not be important to you, but to biologists, it is massive. Fungi are eukaryotes; bacteria are prokaryotes. Their metabolism is massively different.
        To identify a chemical like citric acid as GM because the raw materials it is made from *may* be GM, and the organism used to produce *may be* GM (but isn’t), and therefore of concern, is misleading. What, about citric acid molecules, could possibly be of concern? Do you feel they would be somehow tainted by the organism that has produced them through their own metabolic processes? Those GM sugarbeets and maize will also, while carrying out photosynthesis, be generating a fair bit of oxygen that is then put into the air. Is this oxygen, because it has been through a GM organism, of equal concern to you? Will you be stopping breathing in order to avoid it? Probably not. How about the carbon dioxide or water molecules generated by the respiration of these plants?
        As noted elsewhere, the critic acid cycle a.k.a. the Krebs cycle is a process carried out by all living things, and highly unlikely to have been interfered with or changes in any way byt whatever the sugarbeet or maize may have been GMed to do.
        Maybe your concern is not about the molecule itself posing any hazard, but the idea you might be encouraging the growing of GMOs by consuming a product potentially made from them. As you cannot confirm what proportion of the sugarbeets or maize used to make citric acid are GM, be aware you may also be penalising the growers of non-GM sugarbeets and maize by avoiding this compound.

        • Reply Katie October 4, 2014 at 4:53 pm

          Thank you for comments, Maddy.

  • Reply Misty September 9, 2013 at 3:45 pm

    I just wanted to thank you for all the research that you do and sharing that info with us. I know you spend a lot of time and love sharing you findings. I love reading your findings and enriching my understanding. Thanks again :)

    • Reply Katie September 9, 2013 at 6:01 pm

      Thank you so much, Misty! I really needed to hear that tonight. <3

      • Reply Harry Phillips October 4, 2014 at 5:44 pm

        Please enlighten us on this “research” that Katie has done. Katie, if you could link to the papers on any related topic to this blog it would be great.

        I suspect however that like all pseudoscience people when you say “research” you actually mean “reading stuff without any evidence”

        • Reply Katie October 4, 2014 at 6:02 pm

          My sources are at the bottom of the post and throughout the post in links. Thanks.

          • Harry Phillips October 4, 2014 at 6:12 pm

            So that is a No to the research and a yes to the “reading stuff”, got it.

          • Katie October 4, 2014 at 6:26 pm

            Yes. I did read research articles, Harry. Not all of the sites may be peer-reviewed articles – but I did my research, thank you. I have found all of your comments incredibly rude and insensitive – not only directed at me, but also other readers. Bullying is not okay. If you think you are going to win an argument by belittling people whilst hiding behind a keyboard, I think you are mistaken. If you want to have a “conversation” about this topic, that is fine. If you want to just be rude, I will stop approving your comments. Here is the link to my comment policy:

  • Reply Lisa September 9, 2013 at 6:35 pm

    I would like to know your opinion on carrageenan. I try to make my own almond or rice milk, but sometimes I need to purchase it when we are traveling. From what I read, carrageenan is not healthy. Do you know of any dairy free, organic, non GMO products that do not contain carrageenan? I appreciate your hard work and dedication to bringing us this information.
    By the way, I know you did not type out the words “WTF” and I am sure you were trying to make a point, but I did take offense to it, especially since I encourage my teenage daughter to read your articles. I think you could have left that out and still got your point across. Thanks again.

    • Reply Katie September 9, 2013 at 6:46 pm

      Hello Lisa,

      I will definitely consider writing a post on carrageenan, I’ve heard some not so pleasant things about it as well and I would love to delve into it more. This page is a great resource for looking for brands without carrageenan: I have heard the organic 365 Whole Foods brand has no carrageenan in it.

      I am sorry about the “WTF” since in my house it means “What the Frick” – but I completely understand. I went ahead and changed it out with something more PG, and will keep that in mind for future posts.

      Thank you for stopping by and for the support,

      • Reply Nancy August 29, 2014 at 5:08 am

        I have been struggling with mouth ulcers for years that really got out of hand a year ago. Food allergy testing helped but did not include carrageenan. I recently eliminated carrageenan from my diet. Carrageenan is found in most dairy free products. Much better!
        Thank you for the information on citric acid. Corn (and sugar cane) are included on my list of allergies. I started cooking any legumes from scratch – it takes time and planning, but it is worth it.

  • Reply sasha September 9, 2013 at 7:39 pm

    THANKS for the article. my son has a corn allergy and we avoid citric acid anyways. I didnt even think about the gmo aspect even if we were not avoiding because of an allergy I would have started to reffuse purchasing thses items. as consumers the choices we make can impact the food industry. we need to get back to the basics on a larger scale if not for our health then for the generations that follow. I look forward to more info and can’t wait to findnout more about carregeenan as well.

    • Reply Katie September 9, 2013 at 7:58 pm

      Thank you, Sasha! You really made my night! :)

  • Reply Mama's Lebanese Kitchen September 9, 2013 at 11:49 pm

    Thanks for shedding the light on the use of GMOs in citric acid. I’ve been trying to find a source for high quality citric acid that is made from citrus, or from non-GMO sugar. I know those will be much more expensive but for occasional use in cooking it should be ok. If you happen to know of such sources I’d appreciate sharing. Thanks, ed

    • Reply AnnaOna November 12, 2013 at 1:11 am

      I like the article. I really want to do my home made organic mozzarella cheese and one of the main ingredient is citric acid. I did a research and couldnt find organic citric acid. Probably it does not exist. I’d like to find a high quality citric acid that is made from citrus? Can anybody suggest one?
      thank you

  • Reply Deanna September 10, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    Thank you so much for all the information you share! It’s been a long process educating my husband on real food and the dangers associated with GMOs…he’s finally starting to “get it” and not want those products in the house…and every day I’m learning more about how many products contain GMOs or awful additives. Can’t wait to be growing my own and having my own animals!!!!

    • Reply Harry Phillips October 4, 2014 at 5:50 pm

      Can you enlighten us on what there is to “get” Deanna? Saying “GMO is bad” is like saying “hammer is bad”, GMO is simply a tool.

      How about that corn that produces an enzyme in the leafy humans don’t eat it parts to stop insect attacks. Less insect attacks = LESS chemicals the farmers have to spray, you are in favour of that use right?

      • Reply Katie October 4, 2014 at 6:02 pm

        Please respond more respectfully in the future. Thank you.

  • Reply Eddna September 10, 2013 at 8:31 pm

    I buy organic roasted tomatoes, it says naturally derived citric acid. So I assumed it was non gmo.
    Now I wonder is it?

    • Reply Kris November 28, 2014 at 6:32 pm

      I also noticed that on my Organic Roma Tomatoes from Costco. I emailed them to see if their “naturally derived’ citric acid is GM Free. I have my doubts. Email the company and find out! The more that companies know consumers are concerned, the more they will look to eliminate GMOs.

  • Reply Susan Asselin September 11, 2013 at 9:11 am

    Hi Katie, thanks for the info on citric acid. I don’t have any doubt that most of the citric acid in foods today is GM modified, as is nearly everything and I would put money on it that 99% of it is derived from Monsanto’s GM corn! I already read years ago, when trying to find organic infant formula without citric acid, that it rapidly destroys the enamel on your teeth. We too in Australia are lied to about the ingredients in our foods, probably just the same as in the USA. Thanks for your time and effort in researching this important information to educate others. Knowledge is power xo

    • Reply Katie September 11, 2013 at 12:37 pm

      Thank you so much for your support, Susan!

    • Reply Harry Phillips October 4, 2014 at 5:55 pm

      Yes Susan, in REALLY REALLY high contractions citric acid will damage the enamel on your teeth.

      Dose matters, did you know that water in high enough doses can kill you? Did you know in low enough doses that people have the number one neurotoxin (Botox) safely injected into their face?

      Yes dose really does matter. If you have evidence that dose in baby formula does any damage please show us.

      • Reply Katie October 4, 2014 at 6:02 pm

        Please respond more respectfully in the future. Thank you.

  • Reply JJ September 11, 2013 at 8:43 pm

    When any fungus metabolizes glucose regardless of its source it is completely Brocken down and is no longer recognizable as the original product.
    Yes I’m well aware of GMO’. s I’ve written a few papers on them. No I’m not a fan at all, they hold to many health risks. But we are talking about a basic organism that can completely convert the glucose..
    Are you saying there is some genetic carry over from the original food source to our plates by way of the citric acid?
    And the gm A.niger is it modified through years of manipulation or by viral gene insertion.?

    No vegetable or fruit you eat is in its original form. Throughout time people have selected the best of the best and breed them to produce the desired results. They are all genetically modified.
    Which is fine..

    Now if you’re talking about gene insertion through a viral carrier that delivers animal and insect genes into our food to change its fundamental gene sequence. This is not ok at all..

    The year following the introduction of viral produced GMO’s. the food allergy rate increased by 256% that alone is evidence of how wrong they are for our body.
    Thanks for your time…

    • Reply Harry Phillips October 4, 2014 at 5:57 pm

      JJ, corellation does not equal causation. Seeing as you have ZERO clue about that I doubt you have even read a scientific paper let alone wrote one.

      • Reply Katie October 4, 2014 at 6:01 pm

        Please respond more respectfully in the future, Harry. Thank you.

  • Reply Dawn @ Peeling Back the Onion Layers September 13, 2013 at 7:43 am

    What an interesting article! I’d love it if you would share at our Healing With Foods blog hop! Hope to see you there!

    • Reply Katie September 13, 2013 at 12:59 pm

      Sounds great, I will try to hop over there soon! :)

  • Reply chris September 13, 2013 at 10:21 am

    Mepster sounds like he works for the government…..”trust me” he says……yeah…not happening. Like you said Katie the only way to be sure is to make it yourself, grow it yourself and raise it yourself. Well said!!!

    • Reply Katie September 13, 2013 at 12:58 pm

      Thanks, Chris! :)

  • Reply Lisa Lynn (@lisalombardo5) September 14, 2013 at 6:04 am

    Drat. I just bought citric acid to use in my canning recipes. It is from Frontier Herbs, so it might be a non-GMO product. I’ll have to look into that. Thanks for the info!

    I’d love to have you share your talent on The HomeAcre Hop on Thursdays! Stop by The Self Sufficient HomeAcre to join the fun…and our giveaway!

  • Reply Scott September 14, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    Here is information from research I’ve done that bolsters your research…

    If people think trace amounts of GMOs do not affect them, they are dead wrong. The threat GMOs pose are invisible to a large portion of the human population due to how GMOs interact with their bodily functions and because the most devastating GMOs are microscopic bacteria. Everyone is affected differently because everyone is genetically different.

    Fortunately for me, I’ve discovered that GMOs are responsible for causing my chronic illness. Within one hour of consuming a food product with GMO contaminants, my chronic illness manifests. Laboratory testing for GMOs isn’t a silver bullet because if only minor tweaking of the bacteria on the genetic level was performed, it may not register as GMO and pass under the radar for labeling. For someone like me, I don’t need to run a highly expensive laboratory test to identify whether or not a food item is contaminated. My body tells me via blatant symptoms manifesting like a fire alarm going off. It is unfortunate for others, but their body is probably producing cancer etc. as a response, which is a silent alarm.

    Now why do GMO bacteria pose such a huge threat? Well, despite popular belief, diet isn’t as important as people think. For example, an apple contains essential vitamins and nutrients for your body. But ask yourself, how does the body absorb and utilize the vitamins and nutrients to begin with? It does so through the naturally occurring micro-flora in your digestive tract, the bacteria. If there is an imbalance in the micro-flora of your body, then your body will not effectively uptake the vitamins and nutrients. The primary focus should be on normalizing the micro-flora in your body, and then on the vitamins and nutrients you intake. A surplus of unnatural enzymes and unnatural bacteria will cause an imbalance, causing the specific foods eaten for dietary purposes completely irrelevant if the correction has not been made. The bacteria in our bodies are critical and responsible for making sure that the cells in our body receive adequate nourishment. The enzymes produced by bacteria play a key role in brain chemicals, which affects how we think etc.. This is how pharmaceutical medications function. So yes, food is medicine.

    I’m not obsessed about not eating GMOs… it is a matter of life and death for me. Also, do not worry about GMO labeling because that only provides a false sense of security. Even though I have first-hand experience in the real threats GMOs pose, I personally don’t care about GMO labeling. Growing your own food really is the only option you have. If anything, the research Katie has done shows this due to the surprise about modern day Citric Acid’s origin. In addition to not consuming Citric Acid, a recommendation is to not eat any dairy products. They possess the highest concentrations of GMO bacterias and enzyme by-products from GMO bacteria. I’m a cheese lover, but will not and cannot eat the poison.

    Relevant facts you may not know:

    Some of the bacteria in our mouths create an acid that dissolves the enamel on our teeth. Fluoride makes our teeth white by killing these bacteria, thus preventing the acid by-product. You can put two and two together to figure out what Fluoride does to the naturally occurring micro-flora in our digestive tract if we consume Fluoride laced water.

    Lactobacillus is a highly beneficially bacteria. Pasteurized milk is milk that has been super heated to destroy all bacteria. There is no point in consuming something if its beneficial properties have been erased. If anything, it may be harmful to consume a food items devoid of bacteria.

    Plants will uptake antibiotics if it is present in the soil. Simply eating a food deemed organic may not be adequate if the soil has been contaminated. It would take some time for contaminants to work their way out of the ecosystem.

    • Reply Harry Phillips October 4, 2014 at 5:58 pm

      Scott, can you link me the publication and the paper of your “research” ….. or do you mean you searched Google and did a few minutes of reading.

      • Reply Katie October 4, 2014 at 6:04 pm

        Please respond more respectfully in the future, Harry. Thank you.

  • Reply Sunday Snippets September 14, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    […] What is Citric Acid? A Hidden GMO from Girl Meets Nourishment. Interesting — did you know this about citric acid?! […]

  • Reply Thank Goodness It's Monday - Nourishing Joy September 16, 2013 at 12:18 am

    […] What is Citric Acid? A Hidden GMO from Girl Meets […]

  • Reply Thank Goodness It's Monday #36 - Nourishing Joy September 16, 2013 at 12:19 am

    […] What is Citric Acid? A Hidden GMO from Girl Meets […]

  • Reply farmer liz September 16, 2013 at 5:58 pm

    Great post Katie, this is something I have been wondering about and never got around to looking up myself. As a chemical engineer I know that no chemical can be 100% purified, so there will be traces of other chemicals apart from ctric acid, no matter how it is produced, so it does really matter where it comes from, and apart from that I don’t want to support the GMO industry at all. I use lemon juice or vinegar to create acidity in anything that I preserve.

    • Reply Katie September 17, 2013 at 5:04 pm

      Thank you so much for sharing, Liz! I appreciate your insight!

  • Reply Jessica Wood September 18, 2013 at 6:35 pm

    Oh no! Not another ingredient. LOL. I just got done researching Carrageenan and Gellan Gum and am avoiding it. I really thought citric acid was “natural”. DOH!

  • Reply Debbie Alexander September 20, 2013 at 10:11 am

    Great post! I do not think it’s an obsession to try to elimnate products with citric acid from one’s diet given the GMO issue.

    • Reply Harry Phillips October 4, 2014 at 6:00 pm

      What issue? The one where if we do not use GMO the world will not be able to feed all the people?

      All those brown icky people in countries that nobody cares about, yeah too bad for them huh?

      • Reply Katie October 4, 2014 at 6:04 pm

        Wow. Please respond more respectfully in the future, Harry. Thank you.

  • Reply Debbie McKay September 24, 2013 at 1:53 pm

    Hi Katie,

    Thanks so much for all the research you do on the behalf of your fellow humans. It is much appreciated. I have had trouble with citric acid and avoid it at all costs. When I use liquid soap with citric acid (and it’s impossible to find it without it), I break out in a rash. I avoid all processed foods and eat only whole foods. The containers alone are enough to make me run the other way. Plastic that is leaching BPA and phthalates, can liners that do the same, I refuse to buy into the trend of ingesting poisonous products. I have known that citric acid was dangerous, but never took the time to research very thoroughly. Thanks for the news.

    • Reply Katie September 24, 2013 at 5:33 pm

      Glad to help, Debbie!

      Be well,
      Katie :)

    • Reply mmztcass February 22, 2014 at 6:34 pm

      Tropical Traditions does not use citric acid in their soaps, both the bars and the liquid. So grateful for that.

      • Reply Katie February 25, 2014 at 9:52 am

        Good to know! :)

  • Reply A Few of My Favorite Things: September 2013 » Healy Real Food Vegetarian September 29, 2013 at 3:41 pm

    […] What is citric acid? It can sometimes be derived from GMOs. […]

  • Reply Monthly Link Love: September 2013 : Real Food RN September 30, 2013 at 4:01 am

    […] What is Citric Acid? A Hidden GMO by Girl Meets Nourishment […]

  • Reply Things I Love from September | The Nourished Life September 30, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    […] What is Citric Acid? […]

  • Reply Dave November 14, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    Your worries are for naught. Citric Acid is one of the safest things you can consume. Not so good for the teeth, but a NATURAL PRODUCT. I have worked for 2 different citric manufacturers. I am an EXPERT in Citric Acid technology. I can guarantee you that citric in the USA is made from NON GMO organisms. There could be GMO corn that made the citric acid, but the manufacturing and isolation process results in a VERY PURE citric acid. No GMO worries with Citric.

  • Reply B. December 7, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    People with severe corn allergies are living proof that citric acid produced by fermentation is not completely isolated from the growth medium. I have a throat closing, epi pen worthy reaction to citric acid from corn sugar but can tolerate citric acid from tapioca sugar. There are many many others who react to one and not the other.

    • Reply Edna December 7, 2013 at 7:08 pm

      Wow that is scarey! Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply Sally December 9, 2013 at 2:27 pm

    SOme of the comments seem to reflect a confusion about citric acid and lemon juice, saying they want to avoid the former, so they use the latter. But lemons can be as much as 8% by weight citric acid, so that is not a way to avoid it.

    Also, the writer is not saying that citric acid is a GM product, but rather that it theoretically could be. That should not raise the same level of concern as knowing it was prepared by a GMO (genetically modified organism).

    Finally, one should think more carefully about what risk GMOs bring. The organisms we interact with every day are all GMO, that is, they have had genetic modifications over time, and continue to have them. Even we humans have changes occurring in the genes of many of our cells every day, so we could be considered “GMOs”. The concern about GMOs, while there are cases where this might be rational, is really out of proportion to the risk. It is like someone who has heard that an infection with the HIV virus can cause (after a long time) acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) and thus becomes phobic about all viruses.

    • Reply Gameover Canary December 9, 2013 at 6:26 pm

      Actually, the operative word in “Genetically Modified Organism” is modified. Nothing is naturally modified because it is impossible for oranges to cross-breed with fish etc.. You are getting selective breeding and/or natural selection mixed up with genetic modification.

      Most of the current genetic modification is in splicing the DNA of bacteria into plants. A little research about how vital a balanced microflora is for the human body is very telling as to how extremely hazardous GMOs are to our health. Would you be okay with Zoloft or Adderall being mixed in with your food or water? No you wouldn’t be.

      Don’t think GMOs affect you like medications do? Think again. Common sense and research dictate otherwise.

  • Reply Katherin December 31, 2013 at 12:04 am

    Wow thank you for sharing!!!
    I know a lady who went citric acid free and gluten free and now she doesn’t have Migraines anymore!!! :)

  • Reply kingdmrle January 13, 2014 at 4:58 pm

    Please watch:
    “forks over knifes”, “Genetic Roulette”, “king Corn”, “Frankensteer”, “Food Inc”
    You will learn all about our food supply. Dont trust what the FDA says they are liers. Do not trust any food other than a plant based diet of organic. If you do eat meat…make sure its grass fed only! Always read the labels but the best thing to do is make your own food!

    Thanks for this post about Citric acid!

  • Reply Deber January 17, 2014 at 3:22 pm

    From God’s lips to Katie’s ears? How does she know that things are just like it was at creation?

    • Reply Katie January 19, 2014 at 12:31 pm

      Hi Deber,

      I am speaking of citric acid made in a factory – definitely not naturally made.

      Thanks for stopping by,

  • Reply Kendra January 23, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    I’m allergic to asperilligus niger, the mold used to make citric acid. I have no problem finding food in grocery stores I can eat. The only thing that’s changed, is that I go to more grocery stores now. Another thing to consider is hidden citric acid. A lot of pre-packaged vegetables are washed in citric acid and it doesn’t have to be on the label.

    • Reply Jocelyn February 4, 2014 at 12:10 pm

      I just found out I’m allergic to it too! All strains of aspergillus actually. Kendra & Katie – have you been able to narrow down specific cheeses that aren’t made with citric acid? I’ve been trying to figure it out, but since FDA doesn’t require it on the label, it makes it pretty difficult.

      • Reply Katie February 5, 2014 at 8:41 am

        I haven’t yet, it is so tricky! If there is a cheese you love, try calling the manufacturers number on the packaging to ask if they process there cheese with Citric Acid. I am sorry it’s such a pain and I am not of more help!

  • Reply Megan Howard January 29, 2014 at 10:40 am

    I have another reason not to consume products containing citric acid. It contains free glutamates, otherwise known as excitotoxins. Most people know this as MSG, and would avoid it, if it were not disguised by so many different names. It is a huge industry, and our foods are full of it. Read the book by the neurosurgeon Russell Blaylock, “Excitotoxins the Taste That Kills”, for more information. People are finding links to autism and auto-immune diseases from its consumption. I had a number of foods that either gave me arthritis or stomach issues, and couldn’t find a common link until I found out about free glutamates. Now that I know to avoid them, it is absolutely shocking how many things they are in.

    • Reply Katie January 29, 2014 at 11:42 am

      Thank you for sharing, Megan!

  • Reply "Everything in moderation?" | Homemaking With Style February 17, 2014 at 12:09 am

    […] 2)  When I said citric acid was another name or form of high fructose corn syrup what I was really saying was, by leaving citric acid on the list of ingredients after removing high fructose corn syrup, they might as well had left the high fructose corn syrup because the citric acid these companies are using is also made in bulk in a lab using the same genetically modified corn that is used in high fructose corn syrup.  Instead of pulling my own data, I decided to link to a blogger who did this research already explaining even more in depth about the citric acid being used in many of the labels we are seeing in a great post entitled What is Citric Acid? A Hidden GMO. […]

  • Reply Katie March 7, 2014 at 2:23 pm

    I appreciate your article. I was just recently diagnosed with citric acid intolerance but suspect that I have had it for many years. My GI and Allergist don’t have a lot of information because at this point there is not a lot of research. I have extreme bloating and abdominal pain when I have ingested CA. Being able to find information such as this and where people share their symptoms, avoidances, etc really helps. Thanks a lot.

  • Reply Karen March 20, 2014 at 9:34 am

    I have a mold allergy and after years of suffering finally figured out it was the citric acid in processed food.

  • Reply Jerk Pork Tenderloin - The Eat More Food Project March 22, 2014 at 5:02 am

    […] a risk that the ingredients used to make citric acid could come from GMOs, which you can read about here. If you would rather avoid citric acid or you can’t find Walkerswood Jerk Seasoning, […]

  • Reply Reality March 31, 2014 at 2:13 am

    Clearly science has no friends here. Citric acid caused your mold allergy? Sigh.

    Please educate yourselves with actual science and not junk science you read from someone’s blog.

    • Reply Katie March 31, 2014 at 8:15 am

      Please cite some sources and we will gladly review. I do not appreciate the way you presented your comment, I have read up on my resources on citric acid found in food products and I am trying to provide information so consumers can use this as a jumping off point and start asking themselves, what is in my food? You can choose to agree with me or not, as well as you can choose to read and/or comment on my blog or not.

      • Reply Timhole October 30, 2014 at 12:22 pm

        But there is no getting through to you. What source do you need to tell you that citric acid is the same formula, e.g. the same chemical no matter where you extract it from? Your whole article is based around the fact that you don’t like the sound of how citric acid is acquired.

        • Reply Katie October 31, 2014 at 11:29 am

          Exactly. That is the point of my post, Timhole. I think a lot of my “critics” truly do not get the jist of what my post is truly about.

          I also do not appreciate the condescension in your responses.

    • Reply Jocelyn March 31, 2014 at 9:06 am

      Hi “Reality”,

      I’m not sure how you came to the conclusion that anyone was saying citric acid caused their mold allergy, but allow me to explain it to you with “science.”

      Aspergillus niger (a strain of the mold aspergillus), is fermented in the industrial production of several food additives and enzymes. One of these is citric acid. This is not the same as the citric acid naturally present in fruit such as lemons. This is the citric acid produced in a lab, and it is the only citric acid that is required to be present on U.S. nutrition labels. (i.e…. If something contains citric acid from a lemon and not the mold, the ingredients will just list “lemon.”)

      Those of us who already had an allergy to the mold (aspergillus) now have several unpleasant reactions when we consume foods that list “citric acid” on their nutrition labels. I will not go into detail here as it can be quite gross, and at times, extremely painful.

      Incidentally, other food additives that are made from the fermentation of various strains of aspergillus include: corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, and glucoamylase. It is also used in the production of some wines; high-alcohol, low-dextrin beers (light beers); soy sauce; Japanese alcoholic beverages; and several shampoos, facial cleansers, moisturizers, and laundry detergents. Additionally, it is used commercially to make “lactase” the active ingredient of “Lactaid,” so anyone experiencing allergic reactions to processed foods that list citric acid may also want to take a look at their diets and eliminate other trigger ingredients.

      This makes life hard for those of us with an allergy to aspergillus. And I do not appreciate your attitude towards us. The links supporting my statements above are listed below. I’ve also included information on some of the many other enzymes this mold is used to produce. Happy reading.

      • Reply Katie March 31, 2014 at 10:59 am

        Thank you, Jocelyn! Great response!

      • Reply Timhole October 30, 2014 at 12:11 pm

        The citric acid produced naturally from lemons is exactly the same as the citric acid extracted from mould. The reason the ingredients would say lemon is because there is lemon in it, if it contained the juice of a lemon, it would say lemon juice. This is because lemons and lemon juice don’t contain pure citric acid (they wouldn’t taste nice if they did). If the citric acid in your packet contained aspergillus niger like you’re suggesting, then it would be required to be on the label.

        All of these articles are carbon copies of each other with not a shred of scientific understanding.

        • Reply Katie October 31, 2014 at 11:31 am

          Timhole, you don’t have to agree with what I wrote – but you also don’t need to be rude about.

        • Reply Jocelyn October 31, 2014 at 12:47 pm

          Hi there. I’m going to scoot past the rude tone because I am legitimately interested if you have an alternative explanation to offer me.

          I was allergy tested for a crap-ton of things less than a year ago and discovered a single allergy to aspergillus. I’m not allegic to anything else. I also diaried all of my food intake, weather conditions, sleep patterns, etc. for a period of 6 months and the singular thing that emerged from all of this was that if I ate anything that contained “citric acid” on the ingredients label, I experienced a severe allergic reaction. Additionally, I discovered that citric acid is not required by the FDA to be listed on the ingredients list for cheese if it is used in the ripening process. So I contacted local farmers and tried various cheeses that were not made using citric acid. I have been eating those regularly now for months and have experienced zero allergic reaction to them, wheras when I eat any of the block cheeses available at the grocery store (I don’t touch the preshredded crap), I frequently experience a reaction. I have not had any success hearing back from big manufacturers about whether or not they use citric acid, but my hunch is that they do.

          At the same time, I can eat any fruit which naturally contains citric acid with ZERO allergic reaction.

          So riddle me this: If I have an allergic reaction to citric acid when it’s manufactured using the mold that I am allergic to, but don’t have an allergic reaction when I consume citric acid via a lemon or a lime, and you’re saying that it is impossible for it to have anything to do with how the citric acid is made – then what is your explanation for why I am having an allergic reaction?

          • Cat November 1, 2014 at 2:05 pm

            Sounds like you are not allergic to citric acid since you can consume it in fruits.
            Aspergillus is in A LOT of things, although there are over a 100 different strands. My guess is you are getting more Aspergillus from the packaging itself because it sits in a warehouse where Aspergillus can get on it, then it is transported 1000s of miles where it can pick up more Aspergillus. Then it sits in the store where it can get more Aspergillus.

            Whereas when you buy local you tend to already be accustomed to any forms of Aspergillus in your area. Also, local products don’t travel as far & typically don’t sit as long, thus, less likely to pick up Aspergillus :)

            Since you are allergic to Aspergillus, wash hands after handing anything, including food packaging (especially the commercial stuff). Hope this helps :)

          • Jocelyn November 3, 2014 at 8:24 am

            This is actually a reply to Cat – but for some reason the site isn’t letting me reply under her post.

            Thanks for the tip! I knew I wasn’t allergic to citric acid itself, and that it was definitely to do with the presence of aspergillus, but I hadn’t considered packaging. I also have similar reactions when I have any processed soy (edamame in the shell is fine), as well as when I have anything that contains corn syrup (or HFCS). I still feel like the fact that aspergillus is used in the making or processing of those ingredients is the key factor for me though. I hadn’t considered packaging before, but now that I think about it – I don’t have an allergic reaction when I eat prepackaged, processed foods that don’t contain any of the above ingredients. Lays makes a plain potato chip that doesn’t contain any additives on my no-no list, and there are a few boxed crackers that fall into that category as well. Nope, for me, the common denomenator has been when citric acid, corn syrup, or soy are on the ingredient labels. There are several other additives that are made with aspergillus, but typically, if I am already looking to eliminate foods with the heavy hitters, I cover those other ingredients as well.
            It should be noted that several local dairies also use citric acid in their cheeses, and when I eat those I have a huge reaction, but as I previously said, when I eat the cheese ripened with something other than citric acid, I experience no reaction at all. (except excitement at the fact that I can eat cheese again!) :)

          • Cat November 3, 2014 at 10:24 am

            I’m glad what you are doing is working for you.

  • Reply Paivi April 3, 2014 at 3:46 pm

    I read a Swedish article about this and they said a. Niger and bensen is used to produce citric acid. The corn or maize is fermented with this. Bensen is highly cancerous. Is A.Niger same as black mold?

  • Reply Walter C. April 3, 2014 at 8:38 pm

    Let me begin by saying that I am very concerned about the prevalence of GM ingredients in so much of our food. Research about the subject is, in fact, what led me to this page. I think it raises important questions that we should all be asking about the food/ products that we put into/ onto our bodies. So I most definitely am in support of the same cause- avoiding products containing GM ingredients or produced using GMOs whenever we possibly can.
    I am, however, a little confused regarding mold allergies being triggered by consumption of citric acid, and I don’t think anyone who has posted here yet has actually “explained the science” behind any of it. Before I continue, I assure you that I’m not trying to argue specifically for or against citric acid, or with anyone about their allergies and the suffering they undoubtedly cause. I truly feel for everyone who is being poisoned by something that is packaged and sold as edible. Additionally, I personally avoid products with citric acid because I do not agree with the GM ingredients that are, in most cases I’m sure, used to produce it.
    It is my understanding that regardless of the production method citric acid itself is a weak organic acid with the chemical formula C6H8O7. So even if it’s produced using A. niger (GM or not), that’s fed a form of sugar that is derived from a GM source, the mold is then removed from the equation altogether and citric acid is isolated. From Wikipedia: “After the mold is filtered out of the resulting solution, citric acid is isolated by precipitating it with lime (calcium hydroxide) to yield calcium citrate salt, from which citric acid is regenerated by treatment with sulfuric acid.”
    That, to me, would suggest that there is no longer A. niger present and what you’ve got is pure citric acid which should in theory have the same chemical formula as citric acid derived from citrus fruit. Perhaps you end up with some residual amounts of other chemicals used in the process. Now of course, I am not a scientist, and I could be WAY off the mark here but it doesn’t seem like there’s mold present in citric acid. Perhaps it’s in another ingredient? Or the citric acid causes an allergic reaction similar to one triggered by A. niger? Or maybe the mold isn’t actually completely separated in the production process after all? I don’t have the answers, perhaps someone does…
    I guess the bottom line is if something makes you sick, regardless of the science behind it, you should probably avoid it. And even though I personally experience no allergic reaction to citric acid, I’ll be avoiding it on principle, before I do!

  • Reply Josie April 5, 2014 at 2:46 pm

    Well that is discouraging! (but such good information) We have always specifically looked for citric acid made from beets due to my son’s orange allergy. Is there a process that you know of to make citric acid at home? I’ve looked around since reading this, but can’t seem to find anything. :)

    • Reply Katie April 7, 2014 at 9:48 am

      I am not sure how to make citric acid at home, but I am big fan of just using a squeeze of lemon or lime in place of it. :) Sorry I can’t be of more help!

  • Reply Evgenia April 7, 2014 at 6:38 am

    Hi Katie,
    Thank you for the post!
    I generally avoid any packaged foods that contain anything that sounds like a chemical e.g. citric acid, sodium benzoat, sodium nitrate etc. I did not realize that cheese is made with citric acid though.
    Do you think most of imported cheeses are made with citric acid that is not GMO?
    If I buy local cheese I usually do it at Farmers Markets (I live in NYC). But I don’t know if farmers are aware of where their citric acid is coming from. What are your thoughts?
    Thank you!

    • Reply Katie April 7, 2014 at 9:54 am

      It’s tough to tell sometimes as to what products contain what kind of citric acid, I have found the only way to truly know is by calling the company and asking them specifically about what kind of citric acid they use, if they use it at all in their products. I would ask the farmers at your market, there should be a few educated farmers there who really care about the ingredients they put into their cheese. It might take some time to find a good source, but once you do you’ll be happy you did! Hope this helps and good luck!

    • Reply Cat November 3, 2014 at 10:33 am

      Citric acid is a natural substance whether it is in a lemon or grown and then extracted from mold, this is also how probiotics are made. Think of how kefir or yogurt is made – by allowing them to ferment which allows this good bacteria to grow. The bacteria is what makes kefir and yogurt thick.

  • Reply Gail Mowatt May 7, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    Here are the guidelines for citric acid in a certified organic product. An organic processed product can have up to 5% non-organic ingredients for it to make a certified organic claim. Citric acid can be a non-organic ingredient classified as a food additive in organic processed foods in Canada according to the Canadian Organic Regime (COR). Its origin must be from fruit and vegetable products. Additionally, the manufacturer of the citric acid must confirm and provide documentation that their product is non-gmo. It is forbidden to use any material and products produced from genetic engineering in certified organic products as these are not compatible with the general principles of organic production and therefore are not accepted under Canadian Organic Standard. (The only exception allowed is for vaccines for livestock that have been grown on genetically engineered substrates but are not themselves a product of genetic engineering, as specified In the standard). So, if you are purchasing a certified organic product, the citric acid or any non-organic ingredient must meet this requirement before the whole product can make an organic claim. The certification body verifies that the documentation is in place to ensure that this product meets this requirement for the general public.

  • Reply Juice Truths: If You Dare - Drink Your Juice May 27, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    […] you dive into the actual ingredients. A flag isn’t raised until we look at citric acid. See this link to learn why. Then, we explore “natural flavors”. What are natural flavors and where do […]

  • Reply fiona May 31, 2014 at 7:01 pm

    I just wanted to Thankyou For putting this Out there on the Web for people researching Citric Acid!
    I Personally Have a Serious Problem w/ Fungis/ Candida .. And When I began Treatment with my doctor she also sent me to a nutrientist to set me up with a special diet, Citric Acid was on A huge laundry list of foods etc that I would have to avoid completely, i never new about citric acid until then. My doctor was also trying to figure out what was going on with an issue with my stomach ( I had extreme Stomach pains and wasn’t able to eat practically anything i normally was, My doctor was checking for ulcers, h.plyri etc etc) Subsequently when I had quit eating citric acid My stomach and other issues/pain went away after years. She determined I was allergic/hyper-senstive/intollerant what have you to it. It is nasty nasty stuff to those who know. It is in EVERYTHINGGG! aghhhh Shampoo, face cream, lotion, makeup etc etc…and all the foodddds i used to love :( … My hair even used to fall out when i used shampoo with it in it and breakout with the face wash and creams / makeups i used…. anyhow just wanted to comment , share and let people know and thank you for writing a piece on it! Take Care!

  • Reply Juice Truths: If You Dare | Drink Your Juice May 31, 2014 at 7:43 pm

    […] you dive into the actual ingredients. A flag isn’t raised until we look at citric acid. See this link to learn why. Then, we explore “natural flavors”. What are natural flavors and where do […]

  • Reply Rosy June 9, 2014 at 10:20 am

    Hi Katie,

    Thank you for writing such an informative post! It was much easier to read than having to do all this research myself!

    I wanted to quickly get your opinion on something. I recently purchased a new “amazing all-natural msg-free” spice mix. I was super excited to try it until i saw that to achieve the lemon flavor it promises it contains citric acid. Not even lemon peel! What are your thoughts on this? Should I stay away from it? It’s sad that something that is supposed to be so “healthy” contains this ingredient. And it was a whopping $9!

    Your input is appreciated!


    • Reply Katie August 13, 2014 at 7:49 am

      Hello Rosy,

      I would recommend calling the company to see what kind of citric acid they had used, and by which process it was made. But another thing to think about, is if you aren’t using it all the time and you enjoy it – then enjoy the spice mix! A little citric acid won’t be bad unless you are allergic. Do what you are comfortable with! :)

      Hope this helps,

    • Reply Timhole October 30, 2014 at 11:43 am

      Where else would you get a lemon flavour but the very thing that causes it? You thank this person for their research despite their complete lack of understanding of what an acid actually is.

      • Reply Katie October 31, 2014 at 11:31 am

        Timhole, you don’t have to agree with what I wrote – but you also don’t need to be rude about.

  • Reply Sandra Miller June 29, 2014 at 9:05 am

    my husband is 68 and had allergic reactions to citric acid, natural or not, since a child. it is not a common allergy, we are told after he was diagnosed in early 1970s. we have been reading labels constantly. it is insidious, used to wash out beer brewery tanks and as preservative for the solutions used in allergy tests (he was literally tested as allergic to everything, then they discovered it was the citric acid solution that was the common factor). it requires vigilance to live with this challenge.

  • Reply Natural Living Experiment | “Toxic” Free NOT “Chemical” Free July 1, 2014 at 10:33 am

    […] what for? It’s ACID! (Visit Is Citric Acid Truly Safe?, USDA Report on Citric Acid Pg. 9, What is Citric Acid? A Hidden GMO for more on laboratory made citric […]

  • Reply Ellen McGuffie July 2, 2014 at 1:00 pm

    Now Foods makes a citric acid that is not derived from corn, which is important to me as I am allergic to corn, or, rather, corn triggers my celiac disease. And yes, it is very difficult to avoid citric acid.

    Now Foods also makes a vitamin C powder that is safe for me, meaning it isn’t made from corn. I forget what they use, but what was important to them (from what they told me, I think, if I remember correctly) was that they wanted to avoid GMOs. Call to make sure, but I think that’s what they said.

  • Reply Melissa July 3, 2014 at 8:31 am

    Thank you! Well said, especially the Take Away :)

  • Reply Leigh July 9, 2014 at 9:56 am

    hi, I just wanted to say thank-you for the post. I have sensed I have issues with citric acid for some time, but I was always confused because lemons, tomatoes etc are no problem. But I *am* very, very allergic to mold! I had no idea this was a common way to produce it.

    I also appreciate the GMO discussion. I started trying to avoid GMOs, and learned quickly the online discussions about them get super aggressive and angry really fast. I am not prone to conspiracy theories but I would not be surprised if the monsantos of the world have people hired just to troll around and yell at people who are just exploring their POV and navigating/discussing information. The vitriol I came up against made me back out of it becoming a ’cause’ in social media – so I guess they got their way :-(. In any case, I want to avoid GMOs due to the pesticide load. I have a lot of headaches and random ailments and pure eating helps a lot.

    Someone commented on carrageenan – that’s my other big no-no because it makes me SO sick!

    Anyway thank you for posting a POV that is smart and, I don’t know, normal vs. radical.

    • Reply Katie July 15, 2014 at 8:49 pm

      Thank you for sharing, Leigh! :)

    • Reply John October 9, 2014 at 8:10 am

      The cittic acid produced by the fungus is chemically identical to the citic acid found in citrus fruits which is chemically identical to the citric acid in EVERY cell in your body (ALL aerobic organisms make energy from food via the citric acid cycle).

      Being allergic to mold has nothing to do with whether the citric acid came from a lemon or a fungus.

  • Reply Juice Truths: All Natural is Not Organic | Drink Your Juice July 28, 2014 at 1:26 pm

    […] dive into the actual ingredients. A flag isn’t raised until we look at citric acid. Click this link to learn why. Then, we explore “natural flavors”. What are natural flavors and where do […]

  • Reply Judy August 14, 2014 at 6:01 am

    Katie, thank you so much for all the info you provide on your website. I can confirm that after many years and much research, all of my skin, stomach, and physical distress has been caused by a sensitivity to citric acid. My question is: does cooking the food that contains citric acid destroy it?

    • Reply Common Sense August 14, 2014 at 3:29 pm

      Since you are so certain that you can confirm citric acid causes all your skin, stomach, and physical distress why don’t you cook food containing citric acid and then eat it? If you have a reaction, then obviously cooking food that contains citric acid does not destroy the chemical.

      This is how I know what is and isn’t toxic. Just saying…

  • Reply Judy August 17, 2014 at 7:06 am

    To “common sense”: I find your response to be insensitive and short-sighted. I recently became short of breath and broke out in hives by “testing” dried fruit which, incidently did not have citric acid listed on the package. The reaction lasted 4 days. I am asking others if they have any information on whether cooking or boiling food will destroy it. Thank you.

    • Reply Katie August 17, 2014 at 11:30 am

      Well said, Judy!

    • Reply Common Sense September 7, 2014 at 11:35 pm

      I’m insensitive for pointing out that citric acid isn’t the only thing you have a reaction to, or that it may not even be citric acid? Really? I’m not insensitive, I’m hypersensitive.

      When I have a reaction, I get extremely sleepy and cognitive impairment within 15 minutes. My resting heart rate rises from 70 beats per minutes to 100-110 points per minute. It lasts for roughly 4 days if I am even slightly exposed to the contaminants. I practice what I preach and do precisely what I recommended.

      Everyone is affected differently due to differences in DNA, however all are still affected all the same. GMO citric acid is the least of your concerns as should be obvious to you since you had an adverse reaction to foods that didn’t contain citric acid. The reaction lasted 4 days because it takes 4 days for the bacteria (microflora) in your body to normalize.

      Did you grow and dry the fruit yourself? Probably not. They add sugar to dried fruit. That sugar is produced by genetically modified bacteria. It is a by-product of the bacteria, which the bacteria is genetically modified in order accelerate production. Time equals money, which genetically modified bacteria maximizes profit.

      To answer your question, cooking or boiling food will not destroy the toxins. I know because the toxins are in almost everything as almost everything is toxic to me. Due to it being near impossible to prevent intake of the toxins, I instead try to minimize their intake and make sure to eat specific foods containing bacterias/enzymes that will flood my system and counteract the rogue bacterias/enzymes.

      Do you have any clue what it is like being forcefully sedated all the time, suffering a severe inability to concentrate to the point that dementia-like symptoms begin manifesting, the feeling of a million tiny knives painfully stabbing into your brain causing a bleeding sensation, each breathe becoming more and more exhausting to the point that it would be so much easier to just stop breathing? I do know. It is like being condemned to Purgatory. Others don’t. They are too busy “living”. Little do they know they’re being suckered like everyone else before them, and their predecessors. Shortness of breath and hives? People take sooo much for granted.

      One thing I know for sure, everything is a lie.

      DNA. Disease. Medicine. Everything.

  • Reply JP September 5, 2014 at 11:42 am

    The biggest issue here for me is that of food safety. In order to safely can foods for the off seasons, citric acid or bottled lemon juice or lime juice is required to protect from bacteria. I avoid these bottled juices because they contain sodium benzoate, sodium metabisulfite, sodium sulfite, etc. Of course, freezing is another alternative, but they don’t keep as well, there is the risk of freezer burn and it is even suggested to reheat at high temperatures to kill potential bacteria before serving. The bottom line here is that the choice is between health and health risk.

    At any rate, the FDA has mandated many of these different kinds of additives for public safety. And that is to say nothing about the threats of lawsuits from contaminated food that has encouraged manufacturers’ use of such preservatives. Today, if I wanted to sell some canned tomato juice or what have you, at the local farmer’s market, I must abide by these guidelines. So, to really do something about this as a problem, laws need to be passed to protect the producers and the consumers.

    • Reply ellen September 5, 2014 at 6:23 pm

      I have no idea if just using fresh lemon or lime juice would suffice, but I would very much like to know. I have celiac disease that is cross-sensitive to corn and corn-derived products, and most citric acid these days is made from corn and does trigger my celiac disease. So I do not eat anything with citric acid in it. And when I do, I do get sick. So…. Can we use lemon or lime juice instead?

      • Reply JP September 8, 2014 at 7:57 am

        Ellen, after doing more research I discovered this very good article,

        Evidently, freshly squeezed lemon juice and lime juice contains the minimal amount of acid that the FDA requires of the bottled lemon and lime juices. I have no idea why all of the canning books and university extensions state “bottled” juice as the requirement for safe canning. I’ve already begun using fresh juice for my canning.

  • Reply JP September 5, 2014 at 1:54 pm

    I know this article isn’t specifically dealing with the issue of canning, but I did come across an interesting article that I am sure many people will find very helpful. It turns out, the acid that is promoted by the FDA in bottled lemon juice is the equivalent to freshly squeezed lemon juice. Therefore, for those who are hoping to find a better, more healthier alternative can do their preserving without the commercial acids.

  • Reply Moa September 10, 2014 at 9:21 pm


    Thanks for your post. I totally agree with you about being careful with citric acid.
    I have been sucessfull in reducing citric acid in food, but my problem is finding schampoo and conditioner without citric acid. Can you recommend any product? Keeping my fingers crossed that there is a product out there : ).

  • Reply didda October 4, 2014 at 11:03 am

    I am just wondering if you stumbled across the Krebs cycle, at all, in your ‘research’? if you have successfully removed all citric acid from your life, how are you alive? can you explain your secret? also, how is fermentation ‘bad’, if kefir grains and sauerkraut are supposed to be the single best things to eat for allergies?

    • Reply Katie October 4, 2014 at 4:55 pm

      I did, Didda. I think you may be missing the point of my post though. Thanks for your comments.

  • Reply Harry Phillips October 4, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    So the insulin produced by GMO bacteria so that diabetics can lead a normal life, you against that as well?

    I have two vials of citric acid, one is from fruit, the other from GMO source, how do I tell them apart?

  • Reply Kevin October 4, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    You really have no clue, do you? SMH…

  • Reply John October 9, 2014 at 7:06 am

    “I personally believe that God made our food the way it is on purpose”…

    Nearly every fruit and vegetable you eat, even the organic ones, in no way resembles what those plants looked like when God made them. Tens of thousands of years of genetic modification by humans (by means of breeding) have given us the produce we eat today.

    You wouldn’t even recognize, much less eat, a wildtype banana or apple.

    • Reply Katie October 13, 2014 at 9:06 am

      We can agree to disagree, John. :) Thank you for your comment!

        • Reply Katie October 14, 2014 at 8:10 am

          Harry, breeding fruits and vegetables with others is MUCH different than genetically-modified ingredients.

          • Harry Phillips October 14, 2014 at 3:22 pm

            The original claim was “God made our food….”
            The clam by John was that ALL food has been altered by humans.
            You disagreed with John.
            I linked to show you the difference between the “God” designed fruit and the human selected fruit
            Now you switched claims that there is a difference between the breed fruit and GMO’s

            I still have these two vials of citric acid, one I know is GMO citric acid. This thrust of this article is that somehow the GMO produced citric acid is different. Please tell me how.

          • Katie October 14, 2014 at 4:08 pm

            I have never switched claims, nor did I even mention hybrid fruit in my post. I have always believed that fruit that is naturally a hybrid is not hazardous (i.e., pluot, a plum and an apricot). And I believe that you have misinterpreted the point of my post. I understand that you are pro-GMO. I am not for GMOs.

            By now, I realize you do not agree with my post. You have made that very clear. Your point is made. I would appreciate it if you moved on now.

          • Harry Phillips October 14, 2014 at 4:13 pm

            So let me ask you this, do you think those “beliefs” about GMO’s are founded in anything that resembles the truth? If you think they are the truth then I would like to see what make you think they are.

          • Katie October 14, 2014 at 4:26 pm

            Do you work for a GMO-company (i.e., Monsanto)? Or have they hired you?

            I am curious about the resurgence of comments such as yours with the GMO-labeling issue that is so prevalent in so many states right now.

          • Harry Phillips October 14, 2014 at 4:40 pm

            So that is a “No” to the evidence.

          • Katie October 14, 2014 at 4:54 pm

            So that is a “yes” to my question.

          • Harry Phillips October 14, 2014 at 5:07 pm

            No actually, I am passionate science advocate, I work as a DB specialist for a World Wide company that provides ticketing solutions for public transport. I am in no way associated with any company that has any involvement with GMO’s.

            Since I have answered yours, what makes you think that GMO’s are in any way harmful or different than any other food. Show us all why you hold that belief and lets examine if it is any where near the truth.

          • Katie October 14, 2014 at 5:29 pm

            I appreciate that you are passionate about something. I think that is very important. I am also passionate about what I believe. That is why I feel like this conversation is becoming redundant. I have made my beliefs available in the past, this isn’t a “new” topic for me. I do not have the time to rehash information I have already.

            I am totally, 100% okay with you eating GMOs (or foods that contains them) – go for it! That is your right and personal choice. I have made a personal choice to not do so. And it is my right to do so; it is also my right to know if Genetically Modified Organisms are in the foods I choose to put into my body. Same as if I choose to drink a light, medium, or dark roast coffee in the morning.

            I have consumed GMOs in my life already. I am still alive. I am very well aware of that. I also have taken the time over the past few years to look into things, and it has raised a few questions to me. It’s not just about GMOs, it’s also about the amount of pesticides and herbicides we put into our bodies. I try very hard to not to shove my opinion down people’s throat. I personally do not like when people do that to me. Instead, I want to provide people with free information that provides them an opportunity to think and ask themselves if they are okay with this or not. I just want people to be aware of what they put into their bodies. And they can do with the information what they choose. I am not trying to convert you, I am not your enemy.

            I really feel that at this point in this conversation that we are “beating a dead horse”. I have read and researched information on both sides of the argument, and I have made a choice to question GMOs. And who knows in twenty years what other research will come out. But at this point in time, this is where I stand. I see where you stand. Let’s acknowledge that, and both walk away in acceptance that it is OKAY for other’s to have differing opinions. The world is still spinning, and I bet that you and I probably like a lot of the same things; except this one thing.

  • Reply Cat October 27, 2014 at 7:42 pm

    There are good fats (olive oil, Omega-3) and bad fats. There is bad sugar and good sugar (fructose, lactose). There is bad salt and good salt (pink salt, sea salt). There is good acid and bad acid. Are all GMOs bad? Those with CKD, prone to kidney stones, have IC, Vulvodynia, among other ailments have problems with oxalate. Oxalate is in a lot of good for you food. They can genetically modify it to remove the oxalate. Meaning, the “bad” part can be removed & help people.

  • Reply Timhole October 30, 2014 at 11:21 am

    Citric acid is exactly what it is and only that. It’s chemical formula is always C6H8O7 no matter whether it’s extracted from a fruit, or other organism. Once the acid is extracted, it’s just C6H8O7 (citric acid), nothing else. If you want to be more aware of what you eat, I suggest learning a little more about how chemistry and biology work.

    • Reply Katie October 31, 2014 at 11:34 am

      Timhole, you don’t have to agree with what I wrote – but you also don’t need to be rude about.

      From now on, if you continue to respond in the manner you have been, I reserve the right to not publish any addition comments from you via my comment policy which you can read here:

  • Reply Marilyn Jones November 9, 2014 at 3:30 am

    Hello, I just wanted to tell you that I’m allergic to citric acid. My allergy is so bad that it can kill me. I recently discovered that I also have to check to make sure there isn’t any citric acid in any medications given to me by my doctors. If they can’t tell you what’s in a drug or don’t know if citric acid is in a particular medication they can contact the manufacturer of that medication and find out. I recently found out that I have Lupus and I’m concerned about the medications that will be prescribed for me because of citric acid. (I found that citric acid is one of the ingredients used in some glue or cream used to put the patches on your head for sleep tests). I do know that I will be demanding that they find out if citric acid is an ingredient in any of those drugs because taken on a daily bases I will not live a week ingesting citric acid.

  • Reply Sarah November 15, 2014 at 1:14 am

    My daughter is almost 6 and is still not fully night trained. About 18 months ago she became gluten free and 9 months ago corn free. I have cut out so many things from her diet and Halloween just passed and there was almost nothing in her bucket that she could eat. I bought her surf sweet gummy bears. Before Halloween she had more dry night then wet which was amazing. She started eating the gummies and was wet every night… Yup they have citric acid. I guess it affects her more then I thought.

  • Reply dave meeks December 3, 2014 at 1:00 pm

    To Jocelyn:

    Loved your post re citric acid. Very balanced and thoughtful. I agree something may become an “obsession” if that’s what it takes to learn the truth. It’s what you do after you have the knowledge that’s important. I used to believe it was ok to eat “crap” if it was in miniscule quantities. No longer.

    I’ve gone 90 days on nothing but fresh fruits and veggies, and felt great. Then to add taste to the veggies I started using canned salsa with citric acid. No oil or sugar but citric acid as its only questionable ingredient. An “insignificant” amount, right? Yet my food cravings came back, almost immediately. I don’t get that with my homemade salsa.

    I believe if our bodies are in state of disrepair from years of past abuse, even with a “good” diet,
    there’s no such thing as an “insignificant” amount.


  • Reply Jane December 11, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    great article and comments, lots of food for thought. ended up here by goggling if citric acid was a fermented ingredient. recently became aware that ferments are a problem for me, even probiotics. had meat and potatoes for lunch w some jarred roasted organic peppers(last ingredient was citric acid). The funny thing is I chose the expensive organic peppers over Wegmans Brand conventional peppers which had NO citric acid. anyway I’m a mess and I had been doing so well all week. major gas from both ends and so much bloating. I’m committed to figuring this all out.

  • Reply Skin Lightening Products and Treatments for Pigmentation Marks December 18, 2014 at 11:43 am

    […] applying citric acid to your skin twice a day, the outer layer of your skin, which consists of dead skin cells, will be […]

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