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A Breakthrough in Probiotics

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Mar 01, 2009

Nestlé Research stabilizes Probiotics to allow application of the beneficial ingredients in a wider choice of food products

Nestlé's Product Technology Centre at Konolfingen, Switzerland, recently announced having successfully developed a blend of nutrients that help protect Probiotics during processing, thus rendering them more stable in food products.

"Probiotics are fragile living cultures which have to be kept alive - not only in the body, but also in foods when they are consumed," said Karine Antoniades Turk, Nutritionist, Nestlé Middle East. "This is essential to give consumers the health benefits that Probiotics provide. The problem is that it is difficult for Probiotics to survive in the conditions of heat, humidity or exposure to oxygen that are characteristic of processing, food manufacturing as well as transport and storage." 

To date, the critical point of Probiotic stability in products has not been well addressed in the scientific community. Now, scientists at Nestlé's Product Technology Centre in Konolfingen, and at the Nestlé Research Center in Lausanne, have developed a protection system combining a processing technology and a blend of nutrients that protect Probiotics during processing, transport and storage. This protection system works in a wide variety of product formats, including powders. 

Nestlé's research on Probiotics started in the late 1960s, and has since lead to many innovations in the Science and Technology of these beneficial compounds, their application into food products, and the understanding of their health benefits.

"Several health benefits have been reported for Probiotics. Depending on the strain, these include helping to improve digestion, balancing gut microflora, supporting the body's natural defenses and the immune function, as well as helping to protect against diarrhea in children," explained Turk. 

Nestlé's breakthrough in keeping Probiotics alive during processing means that its consumers around the world benefit from having a greater choice of product formats that contain viable Probiotics. Products available in the Middle East with added beneficial Probiotics include NIDO 1+ growing up milk, NIDO 3+, NIDO 5+, NESLAC, and NIDO Laban variants.

"This is a breakthrough in the processing of Probiotics. The effect of Probiotics on human health depends very much on the dose, and now, for the first time we have found a way to add Probiotics in different product formats, and keep them viable throughout their shelf-life," commented Monica Fischer, Department Manager Applied Science and Analytical Support, Product Technology Centre, Konolfingen, Switzerland. 

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