A healthy gut contains healthy bacteria and immune cells that ward off infectious agents like bacteria, viruses and fungi1.
Fibre supports gut health. The digestive tract is lined with communities of beneficial bacteria, or probiotics, which help keep the gut healthy. Some fibres, when consumed, are fermented in the colon and are used by beneficial bacteria in the gut as a prebiotic food source2.
Globally though, consumers aren’t getting enough fibre in their daily diets.
Source: Directive 2008/100/EC, Annex II published 29 October 2008, The Code of Federal Regulations, 21 CFR 101.9(c)(6)(i) Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition, UK 2015 Carbohydrates and Health Dahl & Stewart. J Acad Nutr Diet 2015;115(11):1861-70. Gray, J. ILSI Europe Dietary Fibre Concise Monograph Series. 2006. Cho SS and M Dreher (eds.). Handbook of Dietary Fibre. 2001.Clemens, R. et al. J Nutr 2012;142:1390S-401S; Murphy N et al. PLoS One. 2012;7:e39361. King, D.E. et al. JAND 2012;112(5):642-648; 2. T&L Global Consumer Ingredient Perception Research, 14 countries, 2020
But the increasing amounts of research linking gut health with things like heart, liver and colon health, as well as metabolic health, mood, sleep and immunity is waking consumers up to the benefits of products and ingredients that support gut health.
|of global consumers plan to eat or drink more fibre 1||of global consumers eat products that contain fibre for digestive health 1||of US consumers have either tried or would be willing to try high-fibre food/drinks for digestive relief 2||of Chinese consumers agree that they would like added dietary fibre in biscuits for gut health management 2||of Brazilian consumers associate food and drinks high in fibres with improved digestive health 2|
Fibre also has health benefits beyond gut health:
- Supports health blood glucose response to foods
- Supports healthy digestion
- Helps increase calcium absorption
- Metabolic health
Consumers are increasingly learning that a healthy gut supports a healthy immune system; therefore, gut health claims on pack will become increasingly impactful on purchase decisions.
Manufacturers are responding accordingly with fibre-fortified innovation, and product launches for food and drink containing fibre is growing., Four per cent of all food and drink launches in 2020 contained fibre, particularly in nutrition and meal replacement drinks, tabletop sweeteners, and confectionery.
Fibre has many uses, and can also be used for sugar and/or calorie reductions as well as for nutritional and texture claims. Indulgent innovation is harnessing the functional power of fibre ingredients and gut health claims to offer permissible options. There was a three per cent growth in indulgent product launches with fibre and gut health claims between 2015-2020.
We’re also seeing added value and premium positioning possible when combining gut health claims with other claims such as “suitable for halal/kosher/vegan/diabetic”, ethical, free from, etc.
Penetration and growth (CAGR 2015-20) of claims in food/drink launches that contain fibre by claim category
Our ingredients and expertise can help food formulators and manufacturers to harness the health benefits of fibre, while giving consumers the taste and texture they enjoy. Our know-how with PROMITOR® Soluble Fibre and STA-LITE® Polydextrose offers the fortification of fibre without disrupting the taste, colour or texture of products, and solutions to support gut health.
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