VG (also known as vegetable glycerin, glycerin, or glycerol) is a thick organic compound that is extracted from plant oils (commonly palm, soy, or coconut oil). Although it has no colour or odour, VG does have a naturally sweet flavour and fewer calories than sugar. VG is considered to be of low toxicity, and is commonly used in everyday food items.
Uses of VG
Apart from its common use in e-liquid, vegetable glycerin can also be found in many foods, pharmaceuticals, and cosmetic products. In recent years, VG has often replaced alcohol as a lower toxicity solvent in herbal extracts, and its soothing properties make it a popular ingredient in cough medicines.
Vegetable glycerine can be found in the following products:
- Yogurt drinks
- Chocolate milk
- Condensed milk
- Sports drinks
- Condiments (mustard, vinegar)
- Spice mixes and seasonings
- Processed foods (meat, poultry, cereal, pasta, dry fruit)
- Beer, wine, and spirits
- Medicine and skin care products
In regards to use in vaping, VG is the main component in the creation of a visible cloud of vapour, and provides a smoothness and sweetness to e-liquid.
How is VG Produced?
Vegetable glycerin is extracted using a process called hydrolysis, which combines air pressure, temperature, and distilled water to split the glycerin from the fatty acids of the oil. This results in a pure, distilled vegetable glycerin.
Is VG Harmful?
Vegetable glycerin is metabolized more slowly in the body as compared to sucrose or other sugars commonly found in candy and processed food. Because of this, VG has less of an impact on blood sugar levels. VG also does not promote tooth decay, as there is no sugar present to encourage bacterial growth. When used in cosmetics, VG’s absorbent properties pull moisture from the air and help to keep dry skin hydrated.
Learn more about VG and PG on our vaping wiki.