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From fiber to ginger: Digestive health ingredients beyond probiotics

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Product formulators looking to support gut health can draw from ingredients consumers are already familiar with.

Probiotic supplements and fermented foods that inherently contain probiotics, such as yogurt, are the largest categories in the digestive health segment. The accompanying demand for innovation in products supporting the gut has soared. To meet this demand, while growing sales, developers and manufacturers of all application types—food, beverage and supplement—can incorporate ingredients consumers associate with healthy digestion.

Similar to popular live active cultures, fiber continues to be perceived as a healthy ingredient. When used in products, fiber sources can address consumer interest in maintaining and supporting healthy digestion, while also providing quantifiable nutrition that can be relayed to consumers with front-of-pack label claims.

Along with the nutritional and product development benefits, the marketing benefit of incorporating high-fiber ingredients should not be overlooked. Fibers are not only useful in providing mouthfeel—or helping give products a satisfying structure—but can also be considered consumer-friendly, clean label ingredients. Fiber is intrinsic in many ingredients, and from a wealth of different sources, provides brands countless options when deciding upon formulation. Some of the most consumer-friendly sources are ingredients naturally high in fiber, such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables and plants.

Beyond fiber, apple cider vinegar is another ingredient consumers associate with digestive health, as well as other benefits. Across the food, beverage and supplement segments, new products are incorporating apple cider vinegar with mass appeal.

Similar to apple cider vinegar, ginger is a kitchen staple that has long been championed as a folk remedy for nausea and other digestive challenges. Ginger root’s availability in formats such as powder, fresh and juice gives formulators flexibility when incorporating the ingredient’s invigorating flavor.

To read this article in its entirety, check out the Digestive health: Market growth backed by science – digital magazine.

Alison Pomaville has expertise in food and beverage product development, and an understanding of the most recent science and technological advancements in food science. She works to help create custom solutions for Martin Bauer Group’s food and beverage clients, and was a member of the inaugural class to receive Certified Food Scientist designation from the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT).

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