The dietary fibre additive Sunfiber offers health-boosting properties for the gastrointestinal tract and far beyond
The awareness of the relationship between good health on the one hand and a varied, wholesome diet on the other is constantly increasing. Still, however, the fact remains that most people in western societies aren’t eating enough whole grains, legumes, fruits or vegetables as a main source of dietary fibre — which is well known for its positive effects on the digestive system and, as such, plays a vital role in well-being and health.
For the majority of consumers, the average intake of dietary fibre is quite low — only 15g/day — which is significantly less than the suggested amount. The American Dietetic Association recommends a daily intake of 25–30g of fibre, and the World Health Organization (WHO) advises 30g of fibre per day.
A low fibre intake is associated with poor health outcomes. Some signs of fibre insufficiency include irritable bowel syndrome, constipation, flatulence and haemorrhoids, which have far reaching effects on overall quality of life.
The fortification of foods and beverages is a promising approach to improving consumer fibre intake. Taiyo, a pioneer in the research, development and production of functional ingredients, offers ways to close the fibre gap. Its ingredient Sunfiber provides a simple way to increase everyday fibre consumption and combines an excellent taste profile with health-boosting properties.
Sunfiber is made from a naturally occurring raw material: guar. Hydrolysed guar gum is a water soluble carbohydrate derived from the guar plant seed. Because of its high viscosity, guar gum is used throughout the food industry for its superior thickening, emulsifying and stabilizing properties. Sunfiber is suitable for use in a variety of foods and beverages and has no organoleptic impact on the flavour, colour, consistency or aroma of the products to which it’s added.
For Taiyo, naturalness along the whole supply chain is incredibly important, beginning with the fact that the guar plant seeds grow in fields that are free from chemical treatment. During processing, no preservatives are used or added. In addition, Sunfiber qualifies as an organic material, is non-GMO and a 100% gluten-free product. Furthermore, it is all natural, Kosher and Halal certified and vegetarian.
Digestive health problems are becoming more and more common, now reaching epidemic levels. The importance of a properly functioning colon for health and well-being is well known. In fact, the increased consumption of fibre can positively influence the microbes in the gut, which not only has implications for digestive health, but far beyond as well.
Sunfiber is a dissolvable prebiotic fibre that promotes the production of short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) in the large intestine. These are very important because specific SCFAs may reduce the risk of developing gastrointestinal disorders, cancer, and cardiovascular disease.1
SCFAs are formed via a fermentation process during digestion; as the fermentation rate of Taiyo’s Sunfiber is very slow, it is well tolerated and doesn’t produce painful gas, cramping or discomfort — a pronounced advantage compared with other soluble fibres such as inulin, which are rapidly fermented and can therefore cause a lot of gas, bloating and discomfort.
The ingredient is therefore perfectly suitable for everyday use and, even with frequent consumption, won’t induce a state of diarrhoea as other soluble fibres are prone to do. Sunfiber also helps to improve the activity and reproduction rates of beneficial probiotics within the intestinal tract, including Bifidobacteria and Lactobacilli, which are indispensable for an efficient and healthy gut flora.
Besides the benefits of an efficiently functioning colon, Taiyo’s product also offers a number of clinically substantiated health benefits for the entire body. Although other fibres often decrease the absorption rates of minerals, Sunfiber, by contrast, actually improves the absorption of calcium, iron and magnesium and reduces so-called “bad” cholesterol levels.2,3
Owing to the SCFAs generated in the large intestine by Sunfiber, not only are digestion and bowel regularity improved, blood glucose levels are also stabilized and a healthy satiety effect is produced as well. And, unlike other fibres, Taiyo’s functional ingredient can help people to manage their weight: it doesn’t block the gut; it slows the gastric transit time, resulting in a comfortably full and satiated feel, and a natural desire to eat less. Sunfiber is even clinically proven to lower the glycaemic index as well, contributing to stabilized blood glucose levels.
In addition, it also boosts the immune system and reduces the risk of certain cancers. Hence, Sunfiber can play a role in counteracting the effects of several lifestyle-related diseases with just one product.
As a versatile powder, Taiyo’s ingredient is frequently used to enrich a wide variety of foods, beverages and supplements. Plus, with its powerful combination of vitamins, minerals and dietary fibres, as well as enhancing baked goods, dairy products and savoury foods, it can also be incorporated into existing formulations and has no discernible impact on the sensory properties of the final product.
As it is 100% soluble, the ingredient mixes perfectly in water, hot or cold beverages or smoothies. Producing a healthy satiety effect, it is also an excellent ingredient for medical nutrition diets and special diet food. Sunfiber is available in different qualities, depending on the desired application and claims, including three new organic varieties. It is stable at various pH levels and resistant to heat.
Taiyo constantly focuses on the development of other innovative ingredients to support health. Market changes are immediately reflected in their own research, so that the latest technology can always be evaluated and developed. Taiyo’s products are all derived from natural sources and can be modified to comply with specific demands to offer comprehensive and customised solutions.
Whether it’s a single component or carefully tailored compounds, Taiyo is able to help customers realise any individual product concept with its wide portfolio of carefully selected ingredients.
1. http://jn.nutrition.org/content/137/11/2539S.full, 26.10.2016.
2. H. Hara, et al., British Journal of Nutrition 76, 773–784 (1996).
3. M.P. Kapoor, et al., Journal of Functional Foods 24, 207–220 (2016).