Maltol: A Flavoring Agent with Antioxidant


Maltol: A Flavoring Agent with Antioxidant

Well-known for its distinguishing and unique aroma, Maltol is widely used in the field of culinary arts as a flavoring agent. It is also used in the field of cosmetics and perfumery as it has a unique sweet aroma which is close to, but not necessarily similar to that of caramel and cotton candy. Cakes and breads usually contain relative amounts of Maltol, but with the rising issues on the risks of using the compound, many individuals have raised caution on the use of Maltol in the field of culinary arts, as well as in the perfumery and health supplement manufacture fields. Experts say, however, that the risks of using Maltol may only arise if it is taken in excessively high doses. Also, the risks associated with Maltol use are not as severe as they usually involve manifestations of gastrointestinal tract upset. Some symptoms which may indicate Maltol side effects include abdominal pain and discomfort, diarrhea or constipation and flatulence. There are, however, some other benefits of using Maltol.

What is Maltol?

Maltol is a naturally-occurring compound which is useful for various purposes in many industrial fields. Although it may be isolated and derived from many fruits, vegetables and other food sources, it may also be developed synthetically through advanced laboratory procedures. Relative amounts of Maltol may also be found in dairy products such as milk and butter. Maltol in generally may not be necessarily beneficial to health but there some derivative compounds of Maltol are useful improving wellness. Studies are also being conducted on Maltol and its other uses in various fields of study. As a prime flavor enhancer, the use of Maltol is extensive all over the world. However, persons who are suffering from certain problems in metabolism may not take Maltol without recommendation of their physicians.

What are the benefits of using Maltol?

The benefits of using Maltol include the following:

  • It may have antioxidant properties

In one study, experts have come up with a conclusion that Maltol and its other derivative compounds may possess antioxidant properties. This means that it may help prevent cancer cell growth and development in the early stages of the disease process.

  • It may help improve the body’s detoxification process

Maltol may also help detoxify body cells, as a direct presumption which can be established by the fact that it has antioxidant properties. However, this claim is still to be proven.

  • It may reduce effects or toxins in the body

Toxic compound accumulation in the body cells may result to cellular mutations and other dangerous effects. This may be prevented with Maltol supplementation, as claimed by some experts.


Although it is claimed to be beneficial, there are still dangers of using Maltol in excessively high doses. It must also be taken with caution among certain patient groups.

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