Transglutaminase Uses in the Culinary
Transglutaminase can improve the texture and appearance of processed meats, dairy products and baked goods.
Transglutaminase can be found in many food, like sausages, etc. A study found that adding transglutaminase to chicken sausages can improve texture, water retention and appearance. Chefs in high-end restaurants even use it to make novel dishes, such as pasta made with shrimp.
Since transglutaminase is very effective at fusing proteins together, it is also often used to make multiple pieces of meat into one piece of meat. It is also used to make cheese, yogurt and ice cream. In addition, adding to baked goods can improve the stability, elasticity, volume and water absorption of the dough.
There are several problems with the use of transglutaminase, including increased risk of bacterial contamination and foodborne illness.
With nicknames such as meat glue, it is not surprising that the use of transglutaminase in food has safety issues.
But the main problem with meat glue is not necessarily the ingredient, but the increased risk of bacterial contamination of the food that uses it.
When multiple pieces of meat stick together to form a piece, it will increase the chance of bacteria entering the food.
More importantly, if a piece of meat is assembled from several different protein sources combined with transglutaminase, it is difficult to determine the source of the bacterial outbreak.
Another problem is that it may negatively affect gluten sensitive or celiac disease patients
Transglutaminase may increase the permeability of the intestinal tract, causing the immune system to produce a higher burden of allergies, thereby aggravating the symptoms of patients with celiac disease.
It has even been suggested that the surge in the number of people diagnosed with celiac disease may be related to the increased use of transglutaminase in food.
However, there is no scientific research directly linking transglutaminase to increased disease risk, although research in this area is ongoing.
Should We Avoid Transglutaminase?
Although it can’t be proved that transglutaminase is associated with increased health risks, it is understandable that many people want to avoid it.
For people with weak immune systems, food allergies, digestive diseases (such as Crohn's disease), and those who are sensitive to celiac disease or gluten, it may be wise to avoid foods containing transglutaminase.
If you want to avoid foods that contain transglutaminase, it is best to choose unprocessed foods as much as possible.