This substance is a colorless and odorless liquid. It is much more viscous than water, and it has a sweet taste. Glycerol is not toxic to humans and is somewhat soluble in water. This substance is classified as a trihydroxy sugar alcohol and is also known by the name glycerine. It can occur naturally, and it is sometimes harvested from plant and animal sources as a form of triglyceride.
Because of its sweet taste, glycerol can be used as an additive in both foods and beverages. It also works well as a humectant, which helps keep things moist and prevents them from drying out. It can be found in a variety of items such as cookies, liqueurs, and cake frosting. Its humectant properties also make it a viable solution for various pharmaceutical applications, where it can be found in medicine.
Since it is classified as alcohol, glycerol is somewhat flammable and can produce fumes when exposed to the air. It should be handled with gloves to prevent contamination, and it may irritate the skin and the eyes in concentrated doses.