Polyols are low-digestible carbohydrates, which, in contrast with sugar, are hardly absorbed in the small intestine. A significant part of the consumed polyols enters the large intestine as such, where gut bacteria ferment it, contributing to intestinal health. Download article “health potential of polyols as sugar replacers, with emphasis on low glycaemic properties”
What are the pros and cons related to this kind of digestion profile?
- Polyols are low glycemic and low insulinemic. This means they help consumers to reach a more healthy lower blood glucose and insulin day profile, which is discussed, to be of benefit within a healthy lifestyle. Download summary article “the glycaemic properties of polyols”.
- Polyols provide fewer calories than sugar does. The EU legislation allocates a caloric value of 2.4 kcal (10 kJ) for all polyols except erythritol (0 kcal/g) while sugar provides 4 kcal/g. In fighting obesity or preventing weight increase, each and every calorie counts. Download summary article “The food energy value of polyols”.
- Polyols contribute to maintenance of a healthy colonic environment due to their fermentation in the large intestine. Fermentation products are short-chain organic acids like e.g. lactic acid and butyric acid. These acids help to keep the colonic epithelium healthy and could also have a role in maintaining a regular bowel habit. Download summary article “the colonic aspects of polyols”.
- Polyols help to provide sugarfree and no added sugar products with great taste. They are important tools for a healthier diet and a healthier lifestyle.
The health potentials of polyols here described are for informative purpose only. The list of health claims made on food permitted in the European Union is available in the EU Register of nutrition and health claims made on foods.