Obesity

Aliginate Drink Reduces Hunger

A new experimental drink has been introduced which claims to be a replacement for meals. The active ingredient, alginate, is a type of dietary fiber found in seaweed. When added to a meal replacement beverage, alginate is purported to reduce hunger.

Alginate Fills You Up

Alginate is found in the walls of the cells of brown algae and also in several seaweeds known as wracks and kelps. It is widely mixed with medicines, supplements and foods as a stabilizer, binder and emulsifier. Because alginate is a natural cellulose, it binds to cholesterol and triglycerides and carries them out of your system. By this action, alginate is able to reduce the amount of dietary fat you absorb into your bloodstream. Satiety is enhanced by the formation of alginate gels in the stomach. The formulation of meal-replacement beverages containing alginate is such that the alginate doesn’t form a gel until it is consumed.  A 2011 study at the Unilever Institute observed 23 volunteers who were asked to drink 10 ounces of alginate drink instead of a meal. The researchers found that participants felt full up to five hours after drinking the beverage.

Always consult your doctor before beginning a new diet or exercise regimen.

References

Peters, H. P .F., et al.; Dose-Dependent Suppression of Hunger by a Specific Alginate in a Low-Viscosity Drink Formulation; Obesity; June 2011; http://www.nature.com/oby/journal/v19/n6/full/oby201163a.html Paxman, J. R., et al.; Alginate Reduces the Increased Uptake of Cholesterol and Glucose in Overweight Male Subjects: A Pilot Study; Nutrition Research; August 2008; http://www.nrjournal.com/article/S0271-5317(08)00126-7/abstract

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