Inulin Fiber Helps Add Digestive Benefits to Food and Beverages

Betsy Jones
Betsy Jones
Research Food Scientist

Cargill's Oliggo-Fiber® inulin is an "invisible" fiber that can be used in a wide range of beverages, bakery and dairy items, snacks, confections and more.   This is good news for consumers who have a growing interest in fiber for its role in digestive health and weight management, in addition to just wanting to boost their fiber intake. 

This is also good news for manufacturers looking to capture market share by creating great tasting products with digestive health benefits. According to a report about the United States digestive health market, this category provides one of the largest opportunities for functional foods in the coming years – it is the fastest growing segment in the US food ingredients market domain, experiencing double digit growth, and is expected to  be a $495.3 million market  in 2015. 

When looking to add digestive health benefits to foods and beverages, inulin is a proven winner.  It is known as a prebiotic fiber, helping to stimulate growth of normal, beneficial bacteria in the lower intestine. Studies have shown that 5 grams of inulin per day helps to maintain a healthy digestive tract.

Research also indicates that inulin may boost absorption of dietary calcium, particularly in preteens and postmenopausal women, which is important because calcium helps build and maintain strong bones.

Oliggo-Fiber inulin is extracted from chicory root grown in Belgium, and belongs to the fructan group of oligo- and polysaccharides.  The extracted inulin is refined into various powder and liquid product forms with differing functional properties based on chain length or degree of polymerization (DP), giving product developers an incredibly capable, versatile fiber option for almost any product application. 

More good news:  Oliggo-Fiber inulin can replace sugar and fat in formulations without sacrificing taste and texture. 

Whether it’s supporting digestive health or enhancing calcium absorption, acting as a bulking agent or fat mimetic, or helping to reduce calories and sugar,  Oliggo-Fiber  inulin can do it, and it becomes an easy choice when “good” and “excellent” source of fiber claims are desired. 

With expertise in formulating with inulin in a broad array of applications, call on Cargill to help you create winning products with the digestive health benefits that consumers are looking for. 

Betsy Jones, a Research Food Scientist, has been with Cargill for 1.5 of her 24 years in the industry.