HPMC, also known as hypromellose, an increasingly popular alternative to gelatin and gluten.



HPMC is a chemically modified cellulose polymer that is off-white in color and considered safe for human consumption.

  • Alternative to Gelatin: It serves as an alternative to gelatin because of its vegetarian source and its physical similarities to gelatin. This is extremely useful if you need to make your own supplements since it can help vegetarians and those with dietary restrictions consume supplements and medications.
  • Alternative to Gluten: It is also a very good replacement for gluten in gluten-free food. In baking bread, it limits “both the diffusion and the loss of water from the bread crumb and the interactions between starch and protein macromolecules,” which results in softer gluten-free bread and reduces staleness during storage.

Other uses: It acts as a thickening agent, coating polymer, binder, and bioadhesive in pharmaceutical, food, and industrial manufacturing.


Agricultural Research Service scientists are investigating using the plant-derived HPMC as a substitute for gluten in making all-oat and other grain breads. Gluten, which is present in wheat, rye and barley is absent (or present only in trace quantities) in oat and other grains. Like gluten, HPMC can trap air bubbles formed by the yeast in bread dough, causing the bread to rise. Although it has not been widely studied, it is predicted that whole grain breads made with HPMC will have cholesterol-lowering effects.


  • Blurred vision
  • change in vision
  • decreased vision
  • loss of vision

Less common:

  • Pain in the eye
  • redness of the white part of the eye or inside of the eyelid
  • sensitivity of the eye to light
  • tearing of the eye
  • throbbing eye pain


  • Pooling of a whitish fluid visible on the colored part of the eye



None known.

Other names



Source:  Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypromellose

Drugs.com, https://www.drugs.com/sfx/hydroxypropyl-methylcellulose-ophthalmic-side-effects.html

Labdoor, https://labdoor.com/article/what-is-hydroxypropyl-methylcellulose


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