Improving digestive health, part 1
Cargill expert offers insights into formulating foods with gut health benefits., Jan. 25, 2012
by Laurie Gorton

By developing foods aimed at improving gut health, formulators can help many Americans improve their health and wellness. In the first of this exclusive Formulations Update series, Beth Peta of Cargill discusses specific concerns about texture, flavor and choice of ingredient.

Baking & Snack: How does dietary fiber foster better digestive health in humans? Can you share recent research that supports this capability or describes mechanism for this activity?

Beth Peta: Increasing interest in digestive health and increasing fiber consumption is occurring:

Source: NMI Health & Wellness Trends, Gallup Report on Probiotics, IFIC Food & Health Survey

What do formulators need to know about the way these ingredients perform during preparation and processing? Are there limits — regulatory and/or practical — on usage levels in formulations?

Cargill’s application scientists work closely with customers to overcome these challenges and formulate great-tasting baked foods and snacks with increased fiber. We are continuously exploring new and innovative solutions to help our customers formulate around the growing consumer demand for food products with digestive health benefits. Common formulation challenges with adding fiber include:

Are your ingredients better in some applications than others? What types of baked foods and snacks make the best use of these materials?

Our ingredients are designed to work in a wide variety of foods and snacks. Working closely with customers to understand their product goals and the specific challenges they have encountered allows us to provide the right solutions; the best ingredient solution will always depend on the application and the customer’s product goals. For instance, do they want to increase the fiber but also reduce sugar and/or fat, are they looking to make any claims, etc?

What ingredients does Cargill offer that help create such applications in the baked foods and snacks categories?

ActiStar Resistant Starch

Oliggo-Fiber Inulin

MaizeWise Corn Bran

Barliv Betafiber

* “Diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol that include 3 g per day of beta-glucan soluble fiber from barley benefiber may reduce the risk of heart disease.”

Horizon Milling GrainWise Wheat Aleurone