Inulin is a soluble fibre and like other dietary fibre is also classified as a (very) complex carbohydrate. The inulin used in Biozest is made from chicory root but is also found in a number of vegetables such as artichokes, asparagus, leeks, onions, garlic and also whole grains. It resists digestion in the small intestines like all other soluble fibres and is fermented in the large intestine (colon).
Inulin reduces the glycaemic effect of other carbohydrates consumed, which makes it and ideal nutrient to help control blood glucose levels and insulin secretion. As fibre it also increases stool weight and frequency, modulates several aspects of intestinal epithelium integrity and may have a positive effect on blood pressure regulation.
The pre-biotic effect of inulin has been confirmed in numerous laboratory and human studies. The defining effect of pre-biotics is to selectively stimulate the growth of bifidobacteria and lactobacilli in the gut and, thereby, to increase the resistance to invading pathogens. Pre-biotics may have additional benefits because of their fermentation in the large intestine, which yields shot-chain fatty acids.
There is a great deal of evidence for pre-biotics and inulin specifically to alleviate constipation, support the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease, prevent or reduce total and LDL cholesterol, prevent infections of intestinal origin and reduce the risk of colon cancer.
Animal and human studies have also shown that inulin stimulate absorption of dietary minerals, mainly calcium and magnesium, and prevents the loss of trabecular bone structure induced by oestrogen deficiency. This benefit is of great significance in younger people while building bone and also in older people in the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis.