Ingredient Information

Tertiary Butyl Hydroquinone (TBHQ)


Medical Conditions



Palm oil (Elaeis guineensis) with TBHQ stays fresh for longer. It has no distinct odor and is colorless. Palm oil is used in bakery products like cakes, cookies and puff pastries because it makes them more flaky. It is now becoming a popular ingredient in baby formula and pet food as well. The addition of TBHQ gives all these products a longer shelf life. Palm oil is extracted from the fruit of the oil palm tree. Tertiary Butyl Hydroquinone (TBHQ) is an anti-oxidant.

Other Use and Industries

Palm oil containing TBHQ is commonly used in cosmetics, skincare products, varnishes and lubricants.

Health Effects

TBHQ in palm oil gives it prolonged freshness. It is an antioxidant, and reduces the deterioration of fats and loss of nutrients. A high level of palm oil is known to increase the risk of heart disease. TBHQ in large doses (1-4g) can cause nausea, delirium, ringing in the ears, restlessness and fainting. Although the FDA permits only 0.02% of the total oils in a product to be TBHQ, over-consumption is unsafe.

TBHQ is a synthetic antioxidant.


Palm oil has been used since the times of the ancient Egyptians. It is grown in tropical and sub-tropical countries. Palm oil is extracted from the palm fruit. TBHQ can be added to palm oil in four ways: direct method, spray method, antioxidant spray method and proportionate method. It is soluble in oils, alcohol and ether, but not water.

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