DSM’s fat emulsion appetite-suppressing power pinpointed

By Stephen Daniells

- Last updated on GMT

DSM’s fat emulsion appetite-suppressing power pinpointed

Related tags: Nutrition, Digestion, Digestive system

The appetite-suppressing activity of Fabuless, DSM’s fat emulsion, may be due to slowing transit through the intestine, says a new study.

A yoghurt formulated with the company’s Fabuless branded fat emulsion made a next meal take 45 minutes longer to pass through the digestive tract than a control yoghurt, according to findings of a randomized, controlled, double-blind, cross-over study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology​.

“This study provides the first evidence to suggest that this stable fat emulsion may affect the ileal brake mechanism by slowing down the gastrointestinal transit time, which might explain the weight control and appetite suppression previously observed in association with this emulsion,”​ wrote the researchers, led by Arvo Haenni from Uppsala University.

Ileal brake

The ileal brake is a phenomenon whereby functions in the upper regions of the gastrointestinal tract are inhibited, produced by the effects of satiety hormones like glucagon-like peptides-I and -II in the ileum and colon.

In a review in 2008, scientists from University Hospital Maastricht called the ileal brake ‘a sensible food target for appetite control’ (Physiol Behav​., Vol. 95, pp. 271-81). The brake has potential for a couple reasons, they said: Reduces food intake and increases satiety levels; the appetite-reducing effects appear to be maintained over time.

Obesity concerns

Despite being on the market for the better part of a decade, previous studies have merely suggested a mode of action for the palm oil and oat oil emulsion.

Talking to NutraIngredients.com, co-author of the study Annika Viberg from DSM Food Specialties emphasized that the mechanism had been elucidated in a non-invasive, in vivo​ study which reflects the normal consumption of the product.

“Academics have been asking us about the mechanism,”​ she said. “We can now provide them with the answers.”

Viberg said that Fabuless has been a global success, particularly in light of growing concerns over weight and obesity. The global market for weight management products is estimated to be more than €7bn. While the new study used the ingredient in a yoghurt, Viberg said that efficacy has been shown in dietary supplements, and it can be incorporated into a complex food matrices. "Fabuless complies with most applications,"​ she said.

Study details

Scientists from Uppsala, DSM Food Specialties, and KPL Good Food Practice recruited 15 health men aged between 20 and 59 and with a BMI between 22 and 28 kg/m2 and randomly assigned them to one of two groups. Both groups consumed a yoghurt drink with added Fabuless (8.5 grams) or milk fat (8.5 grams). Three hours later they consumed another meal containing a compound called salazopyrine, which acted a s a marker of the passage time through the intestinal tract. The passage was calculated by measuring for the appearance of sulfapyridine in the bloodstream – the colonic metabolite of salazopyrine.

A week-long washout period followed this intervention before the volunteers were crossed-over to the other group.

The appearance of sulfapyridine was delayed by 45 minutes following consumption of Fabuless-containing yoghurt, said the researchers, indicating that the meal took significantly longer time to pass through the digestive tract.

“The effect of this palm/oat oil emulsion on gastrointestinal transit time may be appreciated as a physiologically relevant observation, related to mechanisms involved in appetite control,”​ concluded the researchers.

Health claims

DSM has submitted health claims in the weight managment area and is awaiting verdicts from the European Commission. Article 13.1 claims for Fabuless are included and the first batch of decisions are expected next week, said Emily Heller, product manager.

Source: Scandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology
​Published online ahead of print, doi: 10.1080/00365520903131999
“Effect of fat emulsion (Fabuless) on orocecal transit time in healthy men”
Authors: A. Haenni, B. Sundberg, N. Yazdanpandah, A. Viberg, J. Olsson

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