Those who decide to lose weight or simply lead a healthy lifestyle do not have to give up cakes and chocolates. And all thanks to the science that invented sweeteners. This discovery is especially useful for people with diabetes, because artificial sugar analogues not only protect the figure, but also do not increase the glycemic index. "Artificial" in this case also means "unnatural" or "harmful." For example, the food supplement E953 is 100% plant-based, sweet, but does not increase blood sugar.
Features of the additive E953
The food supplement under the European index E953 is also defined by the names: isomalt, palatinite, isomalt. These are sweet crystals of various sizes without color and odor, sometimes the additive is in the form of loose powder. Isomalt is present in some sugar-containing plants: reed, beets, bee honey. In 1956, scientists for the first time separated this substance from sucrose, and a product with the taste qualities of ordinary sugar turned out, but is more beneficial for the body.
It was recognized as absolutely safe only in 1990, after which the supplement began to be used in all countries. Today, palatinite is mined in laboratory conditions from the same natural raw materials, production involves several stages. First, in the sucrose molecule, the connection of glucose with fructose is broken, then hydrogen molecules are attached to fructose. Fermentation results in a substance with the chemical formula C12H24O11, or simply isomalt.
Despite the chemical laboratory steps of obtaining E953, this food supplement is considered safe for the body, and in many ways it is much more useful than regular sugar. Isomaltite crystals dissolve in water just as well; the product is suitable for use in cooking and at home. Compared to regular sugar, palatinite is still less sweet, it can make up from 40% to 60% of the sweetness of regular sugar.
In addition to the food industry and domestic use, E953 is used in pharmaceuticals. Due to the high melting point (1450С) and taste, this substance is used in tabletting drugs to improve the taste. Also, scientists have found that isomalt improves the structure of tooth enamel, so it is often included in the composition for caring for the oral cavity. In pharmaceuticals, E953 meets all the necessary standards: it is suitable for all patients, chemically stable, has no animal origin, and is economically profitable.
The use of E953 in cooking and food industry
In the food industry, ordinary sugar can be replaced for reasons of economy or in order to create a specific group of products, for example, foods for people with diabetes. From a financial point of view, the use of palatinite as a sugar substitute does not make sense, since even regular sugar will cost the producer cheaper. But for the creation of dietary products, it is great.
This supplement is not only used as a sweetener. In addition to sweetness, it also has other useful properties, with its help products are given the necessary shape, E953 also acts as a light preservative that extends the shelf life of the product, like regular sugar. It also regulates acidity, resists clumping and caking, due to the high melting point, products with this additive do not stick to hands, do not spread and hold their shape, and do not crumble from temperature changes.
You can meet this supplement in such products:
- ice cream;
- chocolate, candy bars and sweets;
- hard and soft caramel;
- breakfast cereals;
- chewing gum;
- sauces, etc.
At the same time, products sweetened with isomalt are not cloying, since this substance is not as sweet as sucrose or fructose. It is mainly used in foods for diabetics and low-calorie diet products (for weight loss, sports nutrition). Given the safety and some advantages of palatinitis over other analogues, such products will be useful to any group of consumers.
Manufacturers appreciate the additive because it goes well with natural and synthetic flavors, since it itself does not have a smell and reveals other flavors.
In cooking, E953 is more popular as a material for all kinds of decorating cakes, pastries, homemade candies, etc. A viscous substance is obtained from isomaltite crystals, from which it is subsequently easy to obtain any form for decoration. Unlike regular sugar, this substance is not caramelized, that is, it remains transparent and pure without changing color. Elements of jewelry that didn’t work can be melted and remade again, so working with such material is very simple.
Also, this sweetener is used by cooks and pastry chefs for presentations, creating artistic elements for dessert or main dishes. The advantage of this decor is also that it is edible and safe. The chefs of molecular cuisine are especially fond of isomalt, they use vegetable oils to encapsulate them, create transparent edible vessels that fill with berry foam, shavings, and sometimes smoke for a spectacular presentation. In addition to haute cuisine, isomalt recipes for home use are popular.
The effect of isomalt on the body
As we have already noticed, if the product contains E953, this does not mean anything bad. The sweetener in many ways even surpasses the properties of regular sugar, while it is useful not only for diabetics or athletes, but also for other consumers. To date, the use of this substance in food production has been approved by such organizations:
- EEC Scientific Committee of Food;
- WHO (World Health Organization);
- JECFA (Joint Committee on Food Additives).
In many countries around the world, isomalt is approved for use; in some of them, restrictions and dose limits are not established. However, reviews of doctors still recommend using this supplement in moderation, since it enhances intestinal motility. The recommended dose for an adult is 50 g per day, and for children under 25 g.
For 60 years of using this substance, scientists had enough time to study in detail its effect on the body. So the benefits and harms of E953 were established.
Of the useful properties distinguish:
- due to the low glycemic index does not cause sharp fluctuations in blood sugar;
- provides a surge of strength, since energy is released gradually and for a long time;
- improves intestinal motility;
- reduces appetite, prolonging the feeling of satiety;
- strengthens tooth enamel;
- improves the microflora of the stomach;
- with moderate use improves digestion.
It is worth restricting the use of E953, since its beneficial effect on the gastrointestinal tract is due to moderate doses. The scientific journal British Journal of Nutrition has published research on the effects of isomalt on digestion. It turned out that the substance is well tolerated by the body, does not impair metabolism, improves bowel function and can be used to improve health. However, increased intestinal motility can cause diarrhea and flatulence with the uncontrolled use of this supplement.
This sweetener suppresses appetite, because the human body perceives it as a fiber, unlike regular sugar, which is recognized in our body as a carbohydrate. Due to this, the substance acts as a dietary fiber, which swells and fills the stomach (ballast), from which the feeling of hunger disappears. This quality is especially appreciated by people who follow a diet for weight loss.
For a long time, the question of the effect of palatinitis on tooth enamel remained debatable: how sweet can not destroy it? Observations and studies have found that supplementation does not cause tooth decay. In the oral cavity, it reduces the acid content, thereby increasing the amount of calcium. In addition, unlike sugar and many of its substitutes, isomalt cannot be a food source for bacteria. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) defines products with E953 as "non-caries."
Where to buy and how to apply
Of the side effects of using this supplement, only the risk of diarrhea and an allergic reaction has been identified. Such consequences can occur only with improper use of E953. There are no strict contraindications to its use, but in some cases, you need to consult a doctor before use (pregnant women, severe gastrointestinal diseases, failure of internal organs).
People with diabetes need to use this substitute only at the dose prescribed by the doctor. This takes into account the proportion of products containing this component. For those who are losing weight, athletes and people who want to abandon regular sugar, one should not get too carried away with such an additive, it is more useful than the usual refined sugar, but only in moderation. For children without special need, it is better not to introduce food additives in the diet, and if necessary, do not exceed the permissible norm (20 g per day).
You can buy E953 in online stores, here you can order almost any quantity: from bulk purchases to 300-gram packages. In grocery stores, such a substitute is rare, but dietary products with it are a sea. Also, sometimes these products are in pharmacies, in the form of dragees or powder, in loose form it is more convenient, since it can be used for diet desserts, homemade chocolate and drinks.
From what we learned about this supplement, we can conclude: it is safe for health, suitable for diabetics, children, athletes and everyone else who wants to maintain health and shape.