Micro-fibres enhance vitamin E delivery: study

By Stephen Daniells

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Nutrition

The ability of fibres to bind vitamin E and improve delivery of the
micronutrient may be increased almost 10-fold by making the fibres
'micro', Taiwanese researchers report.

Rats fed the vitamin E-'micronised' insoluble fibre composite had up to 3.6-fold more vitamin E in their blood than other non-micronised fibre, report the researchers in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry​. The researchers, led by Chi-Fai Chau from National Chung Hsing University, used insoluble fibre from starfruit (Averrhoa carambola​). "The remarkable ability to carry vitamin E suggested that the micronised carambola insoluble fibre in the form of a novel fibre-vitamin composite could be used as a promising carrier of lipid-soluble bioactive ingredients,"​ wrote the researcher. The research taps into an important trend looking at enhancing delivery and bioavailability of bioactive compounds. According to the researchers, the research has added importance since dietary vitamin E intakes for the U.S. population is reportedly less than the 12 mg per day Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA). "Adequate absorption of vitamin E, one of the most important dietary antioxidants, is important for health maintenance such as reducing the risk of cataracts and heart disease and slowing skin aging and anti-inflammation,"​ explained the researchers. "It was speculated that taking several grams of the above-mentioned micronised carambola IF-vitamin (MIV) composite (10.7 mg of vitamin E per gram of fibre) might help improve the absorption of vitamin E." ​ Chau and co-workers prepared novel fibre-vitamin composites using insoluble fibres (unmicronised or micronised) from carambola (starfruit) and cellulose, and vitamin E. The micronisation technique used led to significant structural changes in the fibre matrix, which resulted in a 20.4-fold increase in the water-holding capacity of the carambola IF. An in vitro​ study showed that the micronised fibre-vitamin composites, and in particular the MIV-composite, also released the nutrient slowly. To test the efficacy of the composites in living organisms, an in vivo​ study with male Sprague-Dawley rats was performed. Animals were randomly assigned receive vitamin E-supplemented corn oil (control animals), or corn oil with 0.20 g of non-micronised or micronised composites providing 0.224 and 2.14 mg of vitamin E, respectively. "[The] in vivo evaluation confirmed that the administration of MIV-composite could help maintain the plasma vitamin E at relatively higher levels (about 2.1 to 3.6-fold of the initial values) for at least five hours,"​ reported Chau and co-workers. "Our results suggested that micronised insoluble fibres, especially the micronised carambola IF, could be exploited as potential carriers of lipid-soluble bioactive ingredient (i.e., vitamin E) in different food applications and also be used to produce slow release formulations,"​ wrote the researchers. "This study also provides insights for exploiting the potential applications of micrometre technology in the food industry,"​ they concluded. Source: Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry​ Published on-line ahead of print, doi: 10.1021/jf0733721 "Micronization Increases Vitamin E Carrying and Releasing Abilities of Insoluble Fiber" ​Authors: P.-K. Hsu, P.-J. Chien, C.-F. Chau

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