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Carrageenan is derived from seaweed and is used as a thickener or emulsifying agent in many foods (pet and human). It’s often used in canned pet foods, to make the food more firm and seem appealing (?) to humans. There is no real health benefit to carrageenan as far as I can tell, and many studies suggest that it may possibly be harmful, possibly in some cases contributing to the development or recrudescence of chronic GI inflammation and disease states like Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). IBD is a serious, sometimes life threatening autoimmune disease. IBD is not to be confused with IBS, irritable bowel syndrome. The names are not interchangeable.

Oddly, some of the canned prescription gastro foods actually have carrageenan, which makes no sense to me.

Whether other common thickeners used in pet food (like guar gum) are any better, I’m not sure. Personally think it makes sense to try to avoid them as much as you can, however not at the expense of using a small brand boutique food, since many of those Companies don’t have as many safety checks In place. You may end up swapping out carageenan for something even worse …something that’s not on the label!