New `diet powder` may help suppress hunger
Washington: A proof-of-concept clinical trial of an “anti-hunger” ingredient for yogurt, fruit shakes, smoothies and other foods that would make people feel full longer and ease the craving to eat has shown promising results, researchers say.
According to scientist, the ingredient, which is a new version of a food additive, has been in use for more than 50 years.
The potential new tool in the battle of the bulge is methyl cellulose, a white powder that dissolves in cold water to form a thick solution that turns into a “gel” or gelatin-like material upon heating.
Methyl cellulose provides a pleasant texture and holds together the ingredients in hundreds of food products like baked goods, sweet and savoury snacks and ready meals.
Carsten Huettermann, Ph.D., said that this is the first use of methyl cellulose as a satiety ingredient in food.
“This ingredient would make people feel full after eating smaller amounts of food,” Huettermann said.
“With that sense of fullness and hunger-satisfaction, they would not crave more food. In our first study, we saw that fewer calories were consumed at the following meal after eating our new product. Our next step now is to investigate in further studies the mechanism of action and whether this may have an impact on weight management,” Huettermann said.
The updated methyl cellulose, named SATISFIT-LTG, showed promise for doing that in a controlled clinical trial that Huettermann discussed at the meeting.
He is with Dow Wolff Cellulosics in Bomlitz, Germany, which manufactures methyl cellulose. Volunteers who consumed SATISFIT-LTG experienced a reduction in the sensation of hunger that lasted until the consumption of a following meal in which the volunteers could eat as much as they wanted (two hours after eating SATISFIT-LTG) and a statistically significant reduced intake of calories at this meal.
The consumption of SATISFIT-LTG resulted in a 13 percent decrease in calorie intake.
Huettermann explained that conventional versions of methyl cellulose pass through the stomach rapidly and do not work as a satiety ingredient. SATISFIT-LTG, however, forms a gel at body temperature, and the gel lingers in the stomach before passing into the small intestine.
The findings of the study were presented at the 244th National Meeting and Exposition of the American Chemical Society.