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    Home > Chemial News > Food Industry News > In 2021, gum arabic is expected to become the next FDA-approved dietary fiber

    In 2021, gum arabic is expected to become the next FDA-approved dietary fiber

    Echemi 2021-01-22

    According to the new FDA regulations, single or synthetic indigestible carbohydrates must be determined to have a beneficial physiological effect on human health before they can be counted as dietary fiber on the new nutrition label (the act will take effect in 2020 and applies to food sales Companies with more than $10 million).

    Natural or inherent fiber is found in foods such as vegetables, whole grains, fruits, grain bran, flake grains, and flour. These fibers are considered intact because they are not removed from the food. The FDA stated that foods containing these fibers have been proven to be beneficial, and manufacturers do not need to prove that they have a beneficial physiological effect on human health.

    The FDA initially approved gum arabic in the list of dietary fibers, and informed the supplier that in the initial petition, they did not provide sufficient evidence to prove the health benefits of gum arabic, which tried to persuade officials to list it as dietary fiber. However, the FDA stated that if more scientific data is obtained, they will consider new applications.


    US Dietary Fiber List

    In May 2016, the US FDA determined that the following isolated or synthetic indigestible carbohydrates added to food meet the definition of dietary fiber (7 types), including:


    Soluble fiber

    Plantago husk


    Guar Gum


    Locust bean gum



    After two years of evaluation, the US FDA released the official definition of new dietary fiber in June 2018, and pointed out that manufacturers can include these fibers when calculating the total fiber on the nutrition label. These dietary fibers ( 8 types) including:

    Mixed plant cell wall fibers (a broad category that includes many fibers like sugarcane fiber and apple fiber)


    Alginic acid

    Inulin and inulin-type fructans

    High amylose (resistant starch 2)



    Resistant maltodextrin/dextrin


    In April 2019, the FDA updated the dietary fiber list again, and the approved ingredient this time is the modified starch RS4 (modified wheat starch) from MGP Ingredients. In 2020, glucomannan derived from konjac has been approved one after another. So far, the FDA has approved a total of 17 dietary fiber components.



    New clinical data of gum arabic

    On December 29, 2020, petitioners from gum arabic suppliers Nexira, Alland & Robert, and Importers Service Corporation submitted a new study to the US FDA, showing that gum arabic can reduce postprandial insulin and glucose levels.

    This is based on the evidence of a petition submitted in 2019, a new unpublished double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over human clinical study data commissioned by Analyze & Realize GmbH in Germany by Nexira. The results show that Compared with the control group, adding gum arabic powder to breakfast orange juice can significantly reduce blood glucose and insulin levels after meals.

    This means that less insulin is needed to process glucose, indicating increased insulin sensitivity, which helps reduce people’s risk of type 2 diabetes. In addition, the weakened insulin response after meals is also related to the reduced risk of coronary heart disease.



    Gum Arabic, the next dietary fiber

    Gum arabic is a kind of natural indigestible carbohydrate. It is a granule formed naturally from the sap of the acacia tree. The main component is polymer polysaccharides and its calcium, magnesium and potassium salts. It is the most indigestible carbohydrate in the world. The oldest and most well-known natural rubber. Its commercial cultivation is mainly concentrated in African countries such as Sudan, Chad and Nigeria. It is an almost monopolized market. Sudan accounts for about 80% of global gum arabic production.

    InaveaTM is an innovative branded raw material launched by Nexira, dedicated to the sustainable development of organic raw materials. InaveaTM Pure Acacia is an organic, non-genetically modified dietary fiber derived from Arabian tree. The product contains 90% dry weight fiber, and a daily intake of 10 grams has a strong "prebiotic" effect. It is reported that the raw material can stimulate the production of healthy bacteria and short-chain fatty acids in the intestines, without causing gas, abdominal distension and other discomfort symptoms, and can be marketed as a new generation of prebiotic dietary fiber.

    A lot of scientific literature supports the fact that gum arabic is a dietary fiber, and it has been extensively studied and demonstrated. Daily intake of 10 grams of InaveaTM Pure Acacia will produce a strong prebiotic effect, while stimulating the growth and proliferation of beneficial bacteria in the intestines and the production of short-chain fatty acids. This raw material has good water solubility and dispersibility, and can be used in dietary supplements, beverages, baking, candy, dairy products, food and other fields.

    Nexira said that although the time limit for the FDA’s response cannot be guaranteed, it hopes to receive a positive response before the summer of 2021. At the same time, Nexira marketing manager Julie Imperato said that gum arabic can continue to be used as an approved GRAS food additive and should be included in the total carbohydrate claim of 1.7 kcal/g2.

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