A look at the health benefits of slow carbs
for Healthy Living
1 in 2 consumers
in the Americas
will aim to lose weight
This also goes for
41% of Europeans
and 27% of consumers
in Asia Pacific
Source: FMCG Gurus 2020
Covid-19 Survey (18 countries)
“Carbohydrate” is an overly broad term that has been sorely abused for decades. Yet carbohydrates are not only important, dietary carbohydrates are the primary source of glucose, the preferred fuel for the body and brain. Where confusion comes in is that not all carbohydrates are the same, nor are they broken down by the body — metabolized — in the same manner.
A primary focus of nearly all weight management plans, and all blood sugar management plans, is controlling the uptake of glucose, the final energy form released into the bloodstream by the metabolism of carbohydrates. The common measure of how much glucose is released in digestion, and how fast, is called the “glycemic response.”
49% of Americans
carbohydrates that are more slowly released are better for health
Source: Sugar & Carbs Survey, Wizer, USA 2019
There are those who already were at risk for or already dealing with type 2 diabetes who let medical check-ups and even treatments slide due to avoiding clinics and doctors’ offices or being unable to get in for same. But as they look to nutrition intervention, they will encounter the many fad diets based on the premise that carbohydrates — all carbohydrates — are bad.
Many carbohydrate sources – including long-chain and even medium-chain carbohydrates (for example, maltodextrins at 3-17 glucose units used in many meal replacers) – have a surprisingly high glycemic response. But there is a good-tasting, short-chain carbohydrate that enters the body slowly and leads to a low blood glucose response and a low insulin reaction. Surprisingly, it is a type of sugar called “isomaltulose.” Although only half as sweet as sucrose, it has a similar flavor and can be used to replace sugar - and potentially also part of the starch-type carbohydrates - in most formulations.
An unprecedented number of consumers are emerging from the first half of 2020 with a lot of unwanted comfort calories under their belts. The combination of sedentariness and stress eating left quite a few people scrambling to lose the weight and get back on track. People are now paying closer attention than ever before to keeping their bodies in shape to support immunity.
Isomaltulose is a unique disaccharide that, like sucrose, is made up of a single unit each of glucose and fructose. Unlike sucrose, these two units are connected by a powerful alpha-1,6-bond that the body must devote time to metabolize. Isomaltulose can thus help everything from improving metabolic function, balance blood glucose levels, and promoting the metabolism of stored fat.
In 2020, 52% of global consumers say they always/usually look for foods to improve/increase the energy level.
And 47% of global consumers say they always/usually choose foods/beverages to improve mental performance.
Source: HFI Global Trends Study 2020
Another advantage: by being slowly released, it allows a more even release of glucose to the brain, helping to achieve a better mental performance, as the brain receives a more steady flow of energy.
Isomaltulose is a natural ingredient, found in honey but readily derived from the sugar beet. It provides the same energy as sucrose, 4kcal/g, but in a more balanced fashion, giving it a much lower glycemic profile. It also helps prolong energy supply, improving fat oxidation during physical activity.
An unexpected bonus: It is non-cariogenic; it does not feed the bacteria that cause dental cavities. Healthy body, healthy smile.*
Isomaltulose is a unique carbohydrate that has a mild sweetness about half that of sucrose, with no aftertaste. This more subtle sweetness profile is ideal for many applications, especially those where less sucrose-like sweetness is preferred, such as certain bakery products.
It can contribute bulk like sucrose in a 1:1 replacement and combines well with sweeteners to provide the desired sweetness profile. Its low hygroscopicity makes it ideal in baking and bar formulations,
and it performs well in beverages (either dairy or juice-based), powdered sports blends, and even confectionery. Isomaltulose is especially well suited for meal replacement products and other types of clinical nutrition formulations.
Consumers are seeking smart nutrition solutions to keep them fit and support preventative health. They want to age healthier as well, able to face future health crises from a position of strength. They want foods and beverages, made from natural ingredients, that allow them to stay active, keep their health, and provide recovery and replenishment as needed. Isomaltulose is an excellent ingredient choice for the products active consumers are currently seeking.
New Applications for Healthy Living
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*FDA citation: “21 CFR §101.80 Health Claims: dietary noncariogenic carbohydrate sweeteners and dental caries”
40% of Americans say that “wanting to feel better and have more energy” is a motivator for adopting a new diet”
Source: IFIC survey USA 2020
Chart courtesy of: Beneo-Institute (isomaltulose.org)