Research analyses the role of acacia gum in no- or low-sugar products
Acacia gum, also known as gum arabic, is a natural gum consisting of the hardened sap of two acacia tree species: Acacia senegal and Vachellia seyal.
French natural gums company Alland & Robert has researched the role acacia gum can play in sugar-free and sugar-reduced products, and has announced that it can help compensate the loss of volume, texture and mouthfeel induced by the reduction of sugar content.
Acacia gum is a dried exudate coming from two varieties of acacia trees. It has been safely used in food products worldwide and is found in thousands of day-to-day products. It is said to be particularly appreciated for being 100 percent natural and vegetal, and for the versatility of its applications.
“Formulating sugar-free or sugar-reduced products to reach satisfactory organoleptic profile and low-calorie content involve new formulation and can be challenging. As a texturing agent bringing low viscosity, acacia gum can be a solution,” said Dr Isabelle Jaouen, R&D Director at Alland & Robert.
Acacia gum is said to help compensate the loss of volume, texture and mouthfeel in sugar-reduced products. It is also known to bring stability factors by reducing the water activity, and improve the softness and mouthfeel thanks to an increase of the water retention. In addition, acacia gum can be used in combination with sweeteners. For example, the loss of creaminess and bitterness can be compensated by a mix of polyols such as sucralose and acacia gum.
Acacia gum is also a fibre, and due to its physical and functional properties, it is considered a good ingredient to enhance the fibre content of food products without compromising the appearance, texture, or flavour of the food product. Acacia gum also helps with the glycemic response of food and drinks: studies have reportedly shown that it lowers the peak glucose response.
Acacia gum benefits also can be measured in areas such as bowel function, gut health, immunity, blood glucose control and glycemix index.