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Health Claim related to non-digestible carbohydrate and increase in calcium absorption


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Resubmission of a health claim on functional foods related to non-digestible oligo and polysaccharides including galacto-oligosaccharides, oligofructose, polyfructose and inulin and increase in calcium absorbtion

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Health Claim related to non-digestible carbohydrate and increase in calcium absorption

  2. 2. Health claim request • Food constituents- Non digestible oligosaccharides and polysaccharides including galacto-oligosaccharides, oligofructose, polyfructose and inulin • Health claim- Increase in Ca absorption • Target population- infants (from birth onwards) and young children (up to three years of age) • Food- infant and follow on formula and processed cereal based food
  3. 3. Reasons for refusal of application • Food ingredients not sufficiently characterized • Cause and effect relationship could not be established between consumption and beneficial health effect
  4. 4. Health claim • According to EU regulation, 1924/2006, a health claim is any claim that suggests or implies that a relationship exists between food category, a food or one of its constituents and health. • Consumption of food category, a food or one of its constituents would lead to • Improve heath and well being • Reduction of diseases • Child development and health
  5. 5. Claim requirements by EU directive • Possible to add other substances, which have particular nutritional purpose in infant and follow-on formula and cereal based processed foods for younger children up to 3 years. Directive 2006/141/EC
  6. 6. What are prebiotics?
  7. 7. Prebiotics (contd..) • Non-digestible oligosaccharides (NDOs)- low molecular weight carbohydrates- immediate in nature between simple sugars and polysaccharides • Can be made of one, two or even three different types of monosaccharide units • Most investigated substances compared to probiotics and synbiotics
  8. 8. Non-digestible carbohydrates • Galactooligosaccharides (GOS), or Trans- galactooligosaccharides (TOS) • Oligosaccharides composed of galactose units, • DP ≤10, an average DP of 2-6. • Preferably, GOS contains at least 2/3 galactose units • ‘Fructooligosaccharide, or oligofructose’ • Soluble dietary fiber comprising a chain of β linked fructose units • Degree of polymerisation ≤ 10 • Also used as alternative sweetner • Inulin and polyfructose • Glucose-terminated fructose chains with at least 90%-95% having DP≥10 • Industrially, it is mostly extracted from chicory
  9. 9. Factors affecting Ca absorption and bioavailability • Effective calcium absorption- active and passive diffusion in intestine • Presence of SCFAs is prerequisite for stimulation of Ca absorption in human (Trinidad et al., 1993) • Many minerals like Ca chelated by pectin from fiber components are freed in colon • Cell membranes have lower permeability to high charged ions like calcium • Organic acids like SCFAs form charged mineral complexes which helps in passive diffusion of these complexes In his study, addition of SCFA enhanced the Ca absorption in distal colon in 6 healthy males
  10. 10. Mechanisms of Ca absorption - enhanced by prebiotics • Increased solubility of minerals due to bacterial production of SCFAs • Enlargement of absorption surface by promoting proliferation of enterocytes mediated by bacterial fermentation products • Degradation of mineral complexing phytic acid • Increased expression of calcium-binding proteins • Release of bone-modulating factors such as phytoestrogens from foods • Stabilization of intestinal flora and ecology • Stabilization of intestinal mucus and impact of growth modulating factors such as polyamines
  11. 11. NDOs with variable DP • Synergistic effects - combination of inulin and fructooligosaccharides (FOS) or FOS with various DP • Mixture of different chain lengths- assumed to be fermented sequentially and thus over a wider range of large intestine and with improved efficacy (Scholz-Ahren et al., 2007).
  12. 12. Prebiotics in infant nutrition • Prebiotics carbohydrates have been added to infant formula in Japan for over 20 years • 90% of infant formula in Japan are purported to contain prebiotics. • Process of commercialization going on in Europe and US • Beneficial role of prebiotics in infants diets has been proven in many studies.
  13. 13. Prebiotics role in infant nutrition • Human gut micro flora is very complex. • At birth, infants intestine are almost sterile • Intestinal micro flora does not change significantly after infancy. • Infants early diet and intestinal micro flora pivotal factors in overall health and development
  14. 14. Prebiotics and SCFAs • Stools from breast fed infants and formula fed infants were collected and HMOS or GOS/FOS were added and incubated for 24h. • Short chain fatty acids were detected. • Bifidobacteria, lactobacillus, acetic acid was stimulated in GOS (2.4g/l) formula fed 371 infants, fecal pH was decreased (Cai et al, 2008) Production of different SCFA during in-vitro fermentation of 2 test substances, human milk oligosaccharides (HMOS) and mixture of GOS/FOS compared to control without oligosaccharides. Adapted from Boehmn et al., 2004
  15. 15. Prebiotics and infant health Improved Ca absorption Improved Ca absorption
  16. 16. Substances Amount g/d Calcium absorption Subject of study Comment Method References Inulin 40 sig Young men Metabolic Balance Coudray et al, 1997 OF 15 sig 12 Adolescents (14-16y) 36h urine coll. Stable isotope Van den Heuvel et al, 1999 TOS 20 sig POM (12) 36h urine coll. Stable isotope Van den Heuvel et al, 2000 OF 8 ns Girls (30) 48h urine coll. Stable isotope Griffin et al, 2002 OF+inulin 8 sig Griffin et al, 2002 Sc and lc FOS mix 8 sig Boys and girls (48) 48h urine coll. Stable isotope Abrams et al, 2005 GOS+FOS 8 sig Adolescents girls (61) 12hr fast Serum ionized Ca Sanwalka et al, 2002 Oligofructose 15 sig Adolescents male (12) 36h urine coll. Stable isotope Ellen et al, 1999 TOS 20 sig Post menopausal women 36h urine coll. Stable isotope Ellen et al, 2000 Results from human studies OF-Oligofructose, TOS-Transgalacto-oligosaccharides, Sc/lc FOS- shortchain/longchain fructo-oligosaccharides
  17. 17. Possible reasons for inconsistent and inadequate results • Habitual intake of NDO cannot be easily controlled in human studies • More studies have been performed in animal model, experimental conditions difficult to control in human • Ethical reason- difficult to conduct studies in infants/children/human • Experimental design, efficacy depends on dose, time of administration, content of calcium in diet, age of subjects studied • Effect is specific for type of carbohydrate and calcium absorption capacity
  18. 18. Conclusion • Adverse effect of NDOs and others has not been reported in scientific literature. • Synergistic effects among different NDOs and NDOs with different DP was observed • Literature suggesting enhancement of Ca absorption by NDOs and polysaccharides cannot be ignored • Based on these facts, our health claim should be reconsidered by EFSA