Well on the way

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Nutrition, Glycemic index

Consumers expect products to be tasty, convenient and now healthy too. That means low in calories, but high in nutrients. New research is not only looking at producing new healthiy ingredients but also maximising their effectiveness in food

Added nutrients can raise the effects of mineral fortification

Fortifying foods with the vitamins and minerals that the body needs is a growing trend, as manufacturers want products to measure up in terms of nutrition as well as taste. But the body's ability to absorb such minerals can be affected by the presence or absence of other nutrients.

To enable manufacturers to ensure maximum health benefits are achieved, Gadot Biochemical from Israel has launched an ingredient line that combines minerals with other nutrients to give a synergistic effect.

Gadolin Calcium, for example, is a highly soluble calcium citrate combined with natural fibre called fructant. Designed for the enrichment of beverages, the presence of the fructant increases the solubility of calcium in the body, improving its absorption.

Another example is a highly bioavailable calcium citrate combined with vitamin D3 in a product called TCC-VitD. The effect achieved is said to be 30-80% enhanced calcium absorption.

The company also offers a combination of calcium citrate and phosphorous -- two important nutrients for bone health. Called Gadophit, this combination is designed for the fortification of soy milk and soy-based foods.

Contact: Gadot Biochemical, Tel: 00 972 4 6461 5159

Probiotics help elderly

New research suggests pro- and prebiotic foods can play a role in reducing the risk of cancer, especially in the elderly.

The level of beneficial bacteria in the gut tends to decrease with age putting the elderly more at risk of diseases such as colon cancer. But a European Union-funded project called Crownlife has shown the levels of 'friendly' bacteria can be increased by taking probiotics and the ingredient Raftilose Synergy 1 -- marketed by Orafti.

The study, co-ordinated by the French Institute National de la Recherche Agronomique, involved scientists across Europe and showed that bifido-bacteria levels increased in volunteers who took probiotics with Raftilose Synergy 1.

A partner in the project, Orafti says: "A healthier digestive system means the whole body benefits."

Contact: Orafti, Tel: 00 32 1680 1301

Bad image mended by a seedy one

A low glycaemic index (GI) bread product that enables bakers to keep in step with the latest healthy eating trends has been launched by Bakels.

The bakery ingredients company has launched Multiseed Bread Concentrate, which it says will help shed the image of bread as a 'bad' food.

Bread consumption has been discouraged by proponents of the Atkins diet but many nutritionists believe a low-GI diet is a healthier way to lose weight in the long-term. Foods with a low GI ranking cause a low, steady rise in blood sugar levels, reducing food cravings, making you feel full for longer.

The bread mix, developed for its excellent taste and sandwich filling carrying capacity, has been tested and awarded low GI status by a leading GI testing company at Oxford Brookes University.

The concentrate contains pumpkin, linseed and sunflower seeds which, together with wheat bran and oat flakes, produce a tasty bread with extra bite and a coarse open texture.

Contact: Bakels, Tel: 01869 247098

Low GI sweetener derived from fruit

German-based ingredients supplier Rudolph Wild has a new natural sweetener based on a fruit concentrate that offers particular health benefits.

Fruit Up is a low glycaemic index (GI), high brix value sweetener. The company says it is the only natural fruit sweetener reaching a brix value (a measure of sugar concentration) of between 78° and 80°, making it ideal for use in confectionery.

Being a clear ingredient, it does not affect the colour of the final product and in terms of storage, its high brix value means it can outlast many other types of sugar.

Wild says the ingredient is well-suited for use in confectionery gums jellies, soft and hard caramels, as well as ice cream and cereal bars.

Contact: Rudolf Wild, Tel: 00 49 6221 799 424

Related topics: NPD

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