Benzoic Acid – A Harmful Preservative

Preservatives are used in all processed foods to keep them from spoiling; unfortunately, most of these chemicals are extremely dangerous to our health and the health of our children. In fact, many of the problems our society is facing today, including the high number of obese children, child diabetes, and rising cancer rates, can be traced back to these artificial preservatives.

Most people will say that the preservatives keep food “fresh”; you’ll notice I didn’t use that word, because in my opinion, once you add deadly chemicals (or any chemicals for that matter) to food, it’s no longer fresh. The word “fresh” indicates that food is new, natural and unspoiled. Chemical preservatives being added to food to keep it “fresh” is an oxymoron, don’t you think?

Benzoic Acid is one of these preservatives that you should avoid. You’ll find Benzoic Acid in processed foods like cheeses, varying sauces as well as meats. Sadly, it’s also in cosmetic products and many pharmaceutical products, so it can be hard to avoid.

Immediately, or shortly following being exposed to benzoic acid, the following can occur: eye damage, irritation of the skin (including rashes, redness, burning sensation, etc.). If Benzoic Acid is inhaled, it can irritate the nose, lungs, and throat, which can lead to coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath. Large amounts inhaled can also damage the nervous system. Source: Benzoic Acid – Uses and Safety

Eaten in food, it’s mildly toxic. Benzoic Acid has been linked to asthma problems and increased levels of hyperactivity in children. You know the problem our country has been having with ADHD? It’s just a made up disease; the reason all of our children are so hyperactive can be traced back to preservatives, such as Benzoic Acid, sugar and other unnatural food additives.

To keep our children from contracting many of the problems that are plaguing our nation’s children, we should do our best to keep them away from chemical preservatives like Benzoic Acid. The hard part is that our children are not only eating this dangerous preservative, we’re also putting it on their skin.

Acne medicated face washes and creams contain benzoic acid, as do many hand and body lotions, lip glosses and lipsticks. Avon Skin-So-Soft, Avon Care Deeply Lip Balms, Avon Clearskin products, Avon Bath Time Body Paints and Aveeno Diaper Rash Cream are only a few examples of products for children that contain Benzoic Acid.

Since it’s in our foods AND our skin care products, how are we supposed to keep it away from our kids? The best way is simply to read the labels; check the ingredients for any unhealthy or dangerous ingredients. There are also many organic options. With the increased knowledge of how unhealthy many of these chemicals are to our health, more and more companies are producing organic, all natural skin care and cleaning products.


  1. Felicia on May 7, 2015 at 8:45 pm

    Girl you crazy keep your food fresh

  2. Lisa on November 21, 2015 at 6:55 pm

    The next time you state a claim, ESPECIALLY when you pinpoint products, PLEASE INSERT REFERENCES. It’s very displeasing to the eye to learn something without evidence. PLEASE FIX YOUR ARTICLE.

  3. Jean on January 7, 2016 at 12:57 am

    Is it true that when an additive gets recognized as dangerous the food companies just change the chemical composition a bit and call it something else? i.e. E220 preservative might now be called Food Acid 330?

  4. vrjnv j on March 2, 2016 at 9:20 am


  5. jansi on March 15, 2016 at 8:59 pm

    Thank you very much for this details

  6. Concerned Kid on March 22, 2016 at 8:20 pm

    Thanks! I want my uncle to stop drinking energy drinks, so I’m making a report with a brief description of each ingredient and if it’s poisonous.

  7. M v on April 28, 2016 at 8:23 pm

    Benzoic acid is in cloves and many other natural herbs lol. It’s not bad for you unless you eat a handful of it hahhaha

  8. Faust on April 1, 2017 at 2:34 pm

    Even more troubling is how most of these products contain dihydrogen oxide. Ever year this chemical kills thousands. It is amazing that no one is following this known and dangerous chemical and pushing for its withdrawal from commercial products!

  9. Phil on April 4, 2017 at 2:34 pm

    Total pseudoscience garbage.

  10. Wng on April 13, 2017 at 7:00 am

    It seems that even the natural and organic skincare products use benzoic acid, potasium sorbate, sodium benzoate. These 3 items are relatively same meaning they are the “safest” alternatives that is available in the market and with almost good efficacy. In food is of course is a no-no.. but in skincare it is approved even by cosmos ecocert as the preservative for organic products.
    So.. i think this article is a bit misleading.

  11. MrScientist on April 28, 2017 at 10:44 am

    If you’re going to write reports like this you must find the concentrations that it is harmful in, else it’s useless find the concentrations its harmful in, and compare these with the concentrations in the food.

  12. Dr. Reimar C. Bruening on June 27, 2017 at 7:16 pm

    Please state your qualifications and sources, before throwing alarmist nonsense at the under-informed – and thus easily scared public. Your statements about benzoic acid are completely irresponsible, and linking it to ADHD is just phantasy. Benzoic acid is produced in the body during metabolism of phenolic compounds such as the anti-oxidants in blueberry (surely not something on your blacklist, I suppose). Converting many potentially harmful compounds into benzoic acid is a way of detoxification by liver enzymes! It is doing exactly the opposite of what you seem to have cobbled together from various websites, where the truth is no longer relevant as long as you can log readership. This is just an appalling state of affairs!

  13. Lana Trana on July 7, 2017 at 11:18 pm

    Long story, but I didn’t have an issue with benzoic acid until I reacted to a new (and “natural”) deodorant. Turns out the underarm skin is an efficient transport location for getting substances into the body. When entering through the skin, it does not travel to the liver to be detoxed with glycine and sent out of the body. I had severe eye irritation for weeks until I discovered the issue. During this time, I reacted to high benzoic acid foods, as well. Once off the offending deodorant for a few months, I could eat those troublesome foods again with no issue. All I need to for that misery to return is to overlook that ingredient — benzoic acid or sodium benzoate. When my eyes begin itching, I know I’ve messed up again. The stuff is everywhere and the eye “irritation” is SEVERE.

  14. Gary Rokuta on January 8, 2018 at 9:12 am

    Only reason I looked it up was because my golden retriever is an ITCHY DOG, from head to paws. All caused by DOCTORS or veterinarians and the inappropriate administering of them. Many have adjuvants and adjuvants are toxic. Did any of you ever see your vet with the packaging of any vaccines given? Of course not, as it’s always already in the syringe. On packaging, there’s many CAUTION signs about ADVERSE reactions. I learned all this from this gadjet I’m using to write this comment, a Note 5, Samsung. Never had a real computer but these phones are like hand held computers.
    I’ve been looking for a natural way to stop her ITCHING, for now, the ears as ZYMOX has a ear solution with hydrocortisone and without. I had 4 of them already but never really used them. The ZYMOX for rinsing has “benzoic acid” and was looking it up and led to this. IDIOT ME, as time always an enemy. Still need to look up 5 more, darn….

  15. gerryman on March 19, 2018 at 7:37 pm

    this is nothing (crap) without sources.

  16. Get a life on May 17, 2018 at 5:28 pm

    There is something extremely wrong with you. You are most likely insane.

  17. Bofa Deez on October 2, 2018 at 3:24 pm

    Your sourced claim about it damaging your nervous system if inhaled is incorrect. I had already been on that page and it said nothing about damaging the nervous system. You are also claiming that ADHD is fake and that it is caused by preservatives? That is just silly because there are plenty of other reasons our nation’s children might have lower attention spans.

  18. Swollen lips on August 28, 2019 at 1:06 pm

    Benzoates are a trigger for orofacial granulamatosis. A good additional point to research. I have to exclude them or my lips swell and peel. Developed the condition suddenly at age 47.

  19. Heather Burk on October 15, 2019 at 6:38 pm

    In spite of so many of the backlashes I think you have raised an awareness and have done your research though it wasn’t listed.
    I just read the food additives list on Innerhealth4you, who tests hair and saliva for 1000 things. I was a fascinating read as to the injurious products we consume.
    If no one has an interest in change for themselves it’s ok. “ When we do what we’ve always done we will always get what we always got”. (Sorry, I don’t know where that quote originated and NO I’m not going to look it up. If someone else wants to it’s ok, just don’t bother to tell me).

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