<< back to food ingredients a-z
TBHQ Tertiary Butylhydroquinone (TBHQ) is an antioxidant approved by the Food and Drug Administration as a preservative. TBHQ is derived from animals and in fats or oils. It is most commonly found in fast foods, crackers, and chips. However, TBHQ is also used in pet foods, cosmetics, baby skin care products, varnish, lacquers, and resins. The purpose of using TBHQ is to stabilize possibly explosive compounds. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) put a limit of .02% maximum of TBHQ in the food product. Ingestion of 5 grams can cause death, while only 1 gram can cause alarming symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), delirium, etc. TBHQ is butane based, a main component of lighter fluid. Botes, Shona. "TBHQ - Why This Preservative Should Be Avoided." Independent News on Natural Health, Nutrition and More. 14 Feb. 2011. Web. 17 May 2011. . "TBHQ (Mixed Feelings) : Molecule of the Day." ScienceBlogs. 29 Mar. 2007. Web. 17 May 2011. .