Alginic acid, also called algin or alginate, is an anionic polysaccharide distributed widely in the cell walls of brown algae, where through binding with water it forms a viscous gum. Its colour ranges from white to yellowish-brown. It is sold in filamentous, granular or powdered forms.



  • Alginate absorbs water quickly, which makes it useful as an additive in dehydrated products such as slimming aids, and in the manufacture of paper and textiles. It is also used for waterproofingand fireproofing fabrics, as a gelling agent, and for thickening drinks, ice cream and cosmetics.
  • Alginate is used in various pharmaceutical preparations such as Gaviscon, Bisodol, and Asilone. Alginate is used extensively as an impression-making material in dentistry, prosthetics, lifecastingand occasionally for creating positives for small-scale casting. It is also used in the food industry, for thickening soups and jellies.
  • Alginates are allowed and used in organic farming as a fertilizer and in organic food production as a food additive.
  • Calcium alginate is used in different types of medical products, including burn dressings that promote healing and can be removed with less pain than conventional dressings.
  • Also, due to alginate’s biocompatibility and simple gelation with divalent cations such as Ca2+, it is widely used for cell immobilization and encapsulation.
  • Alginic acid (alginato) is also used in culinary arts, most notably in the Spherification techniques of Ferran Adrià
  • Due to its ability to absorb water quickly, alginate can be changed through a lyophilization process to a new structure that has the ability to expand. It is used in the weight loss industry as an appetite suppressant.
  • In March, 2010 researchers at Newcastle University announced that dietary alginates can reduce human fat uptake by more than 75%


  • Alginic acid binds all toxic metals inside of the body. When a person consumes unhealthy foods or is exposed to toxins, the alginic acid allows the body to eliminate the toxins.
  •  Alginic acid combined with an antacid is used for rapid relief of occasional GERD symptoms. Alginic acid acts as a barrier on top of stomach acids, preventing contact between the acids and the esophagus. It may help prevent reflux when you sit or stand.


  • Do not use Alginic acid if
    • you are allergic to any ingredient in it
    • you have alkalosis (too little acid in the body) or low blood levels of calcium or chloride
    • you are vomiting
    • you are also taking citrate salts (found in some calcium supplements, antacids, and laxatives)

    Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.


Other names

alginic acid/aluminum/magnesium/sodium bicarbonate





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