Although cornstarch is a common ingredient used in cooking, eating cornstarch can give some people abdominal pain or cause an intestinal blockage, states MedlinePlus. It's unlikely that ingesting cooking cornstarch will cause long-term or serious problems, but ingesting starch used for laundry can be very dangerous.Continue Reading
Cooking starch is generally used as a thickener in sauces and gravies, and eating cornstarch in this form generally causes no problems. Some people suffering from a disorder known as pica crave the sensation of eating starch or other powdery substances. These individuals might eat enough starch to harm their digestive systems. Eaten in large quantities, cornstarch can cause discomfort or even a blockage, according to MedlinePlus. If a person is in pain, cannot drink liquids or experiences other severe symptoms, it is recommended that they seek medical treatment immediately.
Cornstarch contains trace amounts of corn protein, so people with corn allergies may experience allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis, states About.com. Cornstarch may be used to coat the inside of plastic food wrappers or paper food packaging; individuals with severe corn allergies must be aware of all potential sources.
Laundry starch, which is another form of cornstarch, is used to stiffen clothing. Eating laundry starch can be highly dangerous and should be treated as a poisoning incident, explains MedlinePlus. Side effects of eating laundry starch include jaundice, diarrhea, vomiting, convulsions, blisters, fever and coma.Learn more about Dry Ingredients
According to Joyofbaking.com, when cornstarch is used for thickening, it is acceptable to replace it with all-purpose flour using a ratio of 1:2. Therefore, if the recipe calls for 1 tablespoon of cornstarch, 2 tablespoons of flour can be substituted.Full Answer >
Modified corn starch, also called modified food starch, is used by food manufacturers as a substitute for flour or cornstarch as a thickener, emulsifier or stabilizer in food products. Some examples are ClearJel, Instant ClearJel and ThermFlo. Native starch gets modified properties through physical, chemical and enzymatic treatments.Full Answer >
Custard powder is predominantly made of a starch, such as tapioca or cornstarch, along with flavoring such as vanilla, salt and annatto for color. The powder is colored and flavored so that it gains the look and flavor of custard once it is mixed with hot milk.Full Answer >
One popular brand of seasoned salt contains salt, sugar, spices, onion, cornstarch, natural flavoring and garlic. Tricalcium phosphate is added to prevent caking, and paprika oleoresin adds color.Full Answer >