Is Sodium Benzoate Preservative Dangerous?

By Dani Walker

When Is Sodium Benzoate Dangerous?

sodium benzoate dangers

Read Your Labels:

Sodium Benzoate is dangerous when combined with ascorbic acid.

Sodium Benzoate is a preservative most widely used in acidic foods such as salad dressings (vinegar), carbonated drinks (carbonic acid), jams and fruit juices (citric acid), pickles (vinegar), and condiments. It is also used as a preservative in medicines and cosmetics.

When the preservative Sodium Benzoate and vitamin C (ascorbic acid) are used in any foods etc. mentioned above it can be dangerous.   Sodium benzoate is a salt (sodium) attached to benzoic acid. Ascorbic acid would react with it and tie up the sodium releasing the benzene/benzoic acid.

In combination with ascorbic acid (vitamin C, E300), sodium benzoate and potassium benzoate form benzene, a known carcinogen. However, in most beverages that contain both, the benzene levels are below those considered dangerous for consumption.Heat, light and shelf life can affect the rate at which benzene is formed.

Understand that ascorbic acid is Vitamin C, but NOT TO BE CONFUSED  with citric acid which is very different and does not react with sodium benzoate.  They have a different molecule structure, in chemistry  that is what matters.  Only if benzene is released with Vitamin C ascorbic acid is it a problem.  When you read labels and see ascorbic acid & sodium benzoate on the same label, please reconsider your purchase.

No Worries About Sodium Benzoate Dangers With SISEL International

Sisel does use sodium benzoate as a preservative but does not use Vit C (ascorbic acid) in their formulas.  Only citric acid is used which does not release the benzoate.

Because of the high therapeutic doses of ingredients in SISEL’s products a natural preservative can not be used, as it won’t keep the product stable.  If they just had a little acai or whatever, SISEL could get by with a natural preservative, but because of the high potency we must use a very small amount of sodium benzoate.

What Does Sodium Benzoate Do?

Sodium Benzoate’s role in SISEL products is to inhibit the multiplication of certain types of yeasts. Without it they would quickly contaminate the formulations. Certainly a product could be made entirely without sodium benzoate but it would have to be super heated and thus destroy most if not all of the actives. In addition, even airborne yeast, just as mold in bread, would/could contaminate the formula and grow rapidly. Consequently having sodium benzoate as an inhibitor without any adverse affects is highly desirable.

There is not a residual accumulation of sodium benzoate in the body, it is a soluble salt and is eliminated daily through the kidneys.  It is important to note that many plants and fruits contain benzoic acid to keep yeast from destroying the product.  Apples are a good example.  The amount of sodium benzoate in an apple is about what there is in a bottle of SISEL’s liquid nutritionals but it is stabilized with sodium to enhance its properties. When stabilized it is an inhibitor not a killer of yeast. It simply interferes with yeasts ability to duplicate.

So is sodium benzoate preservative dangerous?  The answer is, it can be depending on the source of vitamin C added to the product.  I hope you find this educational and helpful when making your choice to purchase SISEL International products and change your environment.

Dani Walker


About the Author

Sassy, classy and kick a$$y Marketing Muse with a passion for living life well. I help solopreneurs build they online brand with grace and ease. My book on wellness proves that Education Beats Medication Click Here for a sneak peek. Stay tuned and connect if you're ready to start living your bliss online & off!

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(4) comments


hey im glad you cleared this up for me….I eat a food I considered to be healthy then I read the label and saw Sodium Benzoate and Citric Acid (NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH ASCORBIC ACID) and thought OH S@#$ so it is to my understanding that what im eating is absolutley fine for me due to the fact that Citric Acid and Ascorbic Acid are two different things!


    Yes, Brian. As long as the product that contains sodium benzoate does not have Ascorbic acid in it you are fine.


Just a question. Is sodium benzoate toxic/harmful in cosmetics?


    Dani Walker

    Hello Nadine, I am not sure about this. I use the SISEL timeless minerals cosmetics which does not have sodium benzoate in it but I will research and ask my product specialist.

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