What are the 10 surprising products made from petroleum, including 'vanilla ice cream' and 'toothpaste'?

Petroleum is not only used to generate electricity and fuel automobiles, but petrochemical products made from petroleum are used in a variety of everyday items, from food to cosmetics. Live Science, a science media, introduces '10 Amazing Products Made from Petroleum.'

10 surprising things that are made from petroleum | Live Science

◆1: Chocolate
Chocolate coatings may contain paraffin wax, which is derived from petroleum, coal, shale oil, etc. When mixed into chocolate, it can give it a glossy finish when it hardens, help prevent the chocolate from melting even at high temperatures, and prevent the chocolate itself from sticking to the mold. Paraffin wax is not digested in the body, but it is used in food products that meet safety standards, and a 2023 investigation by the European Food Safety Authority found no safety concerns.

◆2: Toothpaste
Toothpaste may contain polyethylene glycol , a polymeric compound derived from petroleum. Polyethylene glycol is added for several reasons, such as flavoring, antibacterial properties, and texture. Some manufacturers also add a petroleum-derived surfactant called poloxamer 407 to prevent toothpaste from dissolving in water, or petroleum-derived saccharin sodium salt as a sweetener.

◆3: Perfume
Some perfumes use natural fragrances, but sometimes petroleum-based oils are used instead of natural essential oils: Iso-E-Super produces an ambergris -like scent, hedione produces a jasmine-like scent, and galaxolide is used to make the scent last longer.

◆4: Paint
It is known that adding plastic polymers to paints improves their water resistance and durability, but these plastics are made from petroleum. Plastic-based paints adhere better to surfaces and crack less than natural alternatives, but as they age and dry out, they can enter waterways as

microplastics , which is a problem.

◆ 5: Tablets
Many tablets are coated with plastic to make them easier to swallow and to prevent them from sticking together, which also helps prevent the active ingredients from deteriorating and extends the shelf life of the tablets.

◆6: Vanilla ice cream
Synthetic oils derived from petroleum are often used in food flavorings such as vanilla, almond, and lemon. These synthetic compounds can be designed to reproduce specific flavors, provide a consistent taste, and are inexpensive. For example, vanillin , which is used to smell vanilla in vanilla ice cream, and benzaldehyde , which is used to smell almonds, are both petroleum-derived flavorings.

7. Vaseline

Vaseline is a waxy substance made by bleaching and refining a petroleum-based compound. It is widely used as a skin moisturizer and as a post-tattoo protectant to prevent the skin from drying out and cracking.

◆8: Laxative
Laxatives are made from polyethylene glycol, which is also found in toothpaste. Polyethylene glycol is said to draw water into the large intestine, softening stool and making it easier to pass. Some laxatives also contain mineral oils derived from petroleum , which form a slippery film inside the intestines.

◆9: Shaving cream
Shaving cream, which is applied to the skin when shaving, contains a substance called isopentane , which is derived from crude oil. Isopentane breaks down sebum and makes hair stand up, making it easier to shave. Shaving cream also often contains polyethylene glycol, which creates a protective barrier on the skin to reduce friction and irritation.

◆10: Air freshener
Like perfumes, air fresheners often contain synthetic oils derived from petroleum, which tend to last longer than natural oils and also help maintain the consistency of the scent.

in Science,   Junk Food, Posted by log1h_ik