My Peep At Life…

October 30, 2007

Reformulating processed foods to be healthier

Filed under: Food and Drink — peepingtom @ 10:33 AM
Mushroom Extracts in Food

Transforming processed food in an attempt to tackle obesity is becoming increasingly significant as the problem of obesity gains focus from health professionals and the media. In an attempt to stay in the market and with growing consumer demand, the food industry is increasing their efforts to make their foods healthier.

Attempting to cut saturated fats and salt from food is one step, which is being achieved by crisp manufacturers by replacing the fats used to cook the crisps. Another step is to change foods that leave you feeling full for longer, which requires a detailed understanding of how the body processes the food we ingest.

Just taking out the sugar of certain foods is not that straightforward. Taking sugar out of ice cream or chocolate prevents them from binding correctly. Taking fats out of cheese and other products leads them to tasting completely different, and therefore are rejected by consumers. But the Food Standards Agency warn that if you take too much saturated fat out of certain foods, such as meat pies or cakes, it causes water to react differently with the ingredients in the mixture, increasing the risk of food poisoning!

A part of the mushroom is holding promising results as it shows the same properties as fats, but with no calories. Trials are being conducted into producing foods using the hydrophobins found in mushrooms. However, the emphasis on natural foods these days means that such products made with mushroom extracts might also be rejected as being too artificial.

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