What is the difference between Sodium Nitrite and
Nitrite has the chemical formula NaNO2
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It is also
used in manufacturing diazo dyes, nitroso compounds, and other
organic compounds; in dyeing and printing textile fabrics and
bleaching fibers; in photography; as a laboratory reagent and
a corrosion inhibitor; in metal coatings for phosphatizing and
detinning; and in the manufacture of rubber chemicals. Sodium
nitrite also has been used in human and veterinary medicine as
a vasodilator, a bronchodilator, an intestinal relaxant or a laxative,
and an antidote for cyanide poisoning.
Nitrite as a Food additive
As a food
additive, it serves a dual purpose in the food industry since
it both alters the color of preserved fish and meats and also
prevents growth of Clostridium botulinum, the bacteria
which causes botulism. In the European Union it may be used only
as a mixture with salt containing at most 0.6% sodium nitrite.
It has the E number E250. Potassium nitrite (E249) is used in
the same way.
chemical will prevent the growth of bacteria, it can be toxic
for mammals. (LD50 in rats is 180 mg/kg.) For this
reason, sodium nitrite sold as a food additive is dyed bright
pink to avoid mistaking it for something else. Cooks and makers
of charcuterie often simply refer to sodium nitrite as "pink salt".
of using this as a food additive have been suggested and researched
concern is the formation of carcinogenic N-nitrosamines by the
reaction of sodium nitrite with amino acids in the presence of
heat in an acidic environment.
has also been linked to triggering migraines. http://www.fda.gov/FDAC/features/1998/398_pain.html
have found a link between high processed meat consumption and
colon cancer, possibly due to preservatives such as sodium nitrite.
have also found a link between frequent ingestion of meats cured
with nitrites and the COPD form of lung disease.
treatment with Sodium Nitrite
sodium nitrite has been found to be an effective means to increase
blood flow by dilating blood vessels, acting as a vasodilator.
Research is ongoing to investigate its applicability towards treatments
for sickle cell anemia, cyanide poisoning, heart attacks, brain
aneurysms, and pulmonary hypertension in infants.
E251 Saltpetre -- Sodium Nitrate
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is the chemical compound with the formula NaNO3. and
molecular mass of 84.9947 g/mol. This salt, also known as "Chile
saltpeter" (to distinguish it from ordinary saltpeter, potassium
nitrate), is a white solid which is very soluble in water. Sodium
nitrate is used as an ingredient in fertilizers, explosives, and
in solid rocket propellants, as well as in glass and pottery enamels;
the compound has been mined extensively for those purposes.
is also synthesized industrially by neutralizing nitric acid with
of Sodium Nitrate
was used extensively as a fertilizer and a raw material for the
manufacture of gunpowder in the late nineteenth century.
nitrate has antimicrobial properties when used as a food preservative.
It is found naturally in leafy green vegetables.
should not be confused with the related compound, sodium nitrite.The
presence of sodium nitrite in food is controversial due to the
development of nitrosamines when the food, primarily bacon, is
cooked at high temperatures. The nitrate compound itself is not
harmful, however, and is among the antioxidants found in fresh
vegetables. (6) Its usage is carefully regulated in the
production of cured products; in the United States, the concentration
in finished products is limited to 200 ppm, and is usually lower.
It can be
used in the production of nitric acid by combining it with sulfuric
acid and subsequent separation through fractional distillation
of the nitric acid, leaving behind a residue of sodium bisulfate.
Less common applications include its use as a substitute oxidizer
used in fireworks as a replacement for potassium nitrate commonly
found in black powder and as a component in instant cold packs(7).
publication from wiley
- A. W. Susanna C. Larsson (2006). "Meat consumption
and risk of colorectal cancer: A meta-analysis of prospective
Journal of Cancer 119 (11): 2657-2664. doi:10.1002/ijc.22170.
Miranda Hitti. "Study: Cured Meats, COPD May Be Linked", WebMD Medical News,
17 April 2007.
- Associated Press. "Hot dog preservative could be disease cure", 9/5/2005.
Khamsi. "Food preservative
fights cystic fibrosis complication", NewScientist.com,
27 January 2006.
Academy of Sciences - National Research Council Academy of Life
Sciences. "The Health Effects of Nitrate, Nitrite and N-Nitroso
Compounds". Washington DC: National Academy Press, 1981
http://www.google.com/patents?id=HUcCAAAAEBAJ US patent 2,898,744