Even though carrageenan is a seaweed-based natural food ingredient, there is mounting evidence that it can cause gastrointestinal inflammation. Carrageenan is found in many “healthy” and organic foods, because it is an effective stabilizer and thickener, and can serve as a vegan replacement for gelatin in some foods. You might find it in your almond milk, cottage cheese, chocolate milk, yogurt, or many other dairy products or dairy substitutes.
Even if you don’t feel any gastrointestinal disturbances, you might want to avoid this ingredient anyway. I do. Inflammation of the gut may contribute to many health problems, ranging from poor nutrient absorption to leaky gut syndrome to autoimmune disorders to colon cancer.
I don’t mean to sound alarmist. The FDA has approved carrageenan, and many people will never have a problem. However, it’s easy to choose products that don’t contain carrageenan, so why not? You can find a list of carrageenan-free foods here: http://www.cornucopia.org/shopping-guide-to-avoiding-organic-foods-with-carrageenan/
And thanks to Richard for suggesting this topic!