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What Is Butyric Acid (4:0) & What Foods Can I Find It In?

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3D-model of Butyric acid (4:0) (src)

Butyric acid, 4:0, is known as butanoic acid.

It is a common industrial chemical and is not that common in nature.

Butyric acid is prepared industrially by oxidation of butyraldehyde.

Butyric acid is a saturated short-chain fatty acid.

Butyric Acid In Body

Butyric acid is a short-chain fatty acid formed in the human colon by bacterial fermentation of carbohydrates, including dietary fiber. (source đź——)

Most butyric acid in our body is produced in the colon through microbial fermentation of dietary fiber and is primarily absorbed and metabolized by colonocytes and the liver.

Butyric Acid Not So Pleasant

When butter goes rancid, butyric acid is liberated from the glyceride by hydrolysis.

Butyric acid is a carboxylic acid found in rancid butter, parmesan cheese, and vomit.

It has an unpleasant odor and acrid taste, with a sweetish aftertaste, similar to ether. (source đź——)

Foods You Can Find Butyric Acid (4:0) In

You find Butyric Acid (4:0) mostly in sausage and luncheon meat, dairy and egg, fats and oil, and sauce and gravy products.

Examples of food sources include

  • Roast Beef Spread
  • Butter Oil
  • Butter
  • Whipped Butter
  • Vegetable Oil-Butter Spread
  • Ghee
  • Garlic Sauce

Foods That Contain Butyric Acid (4:0) In Our Nutrition Tool

You can find regularly updated top ranked lists of foods for over 200+ nutrients in our nutrition tool.

If you are interested in what foods contain the most Butyric Acid (4:0) we recommend you visit our tool.

Here's our top ranked list of foods that contain Butyric Acid (4:0).

Sara Niemelä

co-founder Care Omnia, Head Content Creator


I’m a wife and a mother of three. I enjoy the outdoors, cooking, and spending time with my family.

Nutrition is my passion. I've spent thousands upon thousands of hours reading, analyzing, categorizing and comparing research studies.