FOS and Resistant Starch May Provide Prebiotic Benefits

December 29/Granada, Spain/Health & Medicine Week -- A new study, "The Combination of Fructooligosaccharides and Resistant Starch Shows Prebiotic Additive Effects in Rats," is now available. "Different types of dietary fiber can be distinguished considering their rate of fermentability, thus determining the location of the large intestine where they exert their beneficial effect. Their combination could be interesting to obtain health-promoting effects throughout the entire colon," scientists in Granada, Spain, report.

"The aim of the present study was to evaluate the synergistic effect of two dietary fibers with different fermentation patterns, fructooligosaccharides (FOS) and resistant starch after their administration to healthy rats or in trinitrobenzenesulphonic acid-(TNBS) colitic rats, with an altered colonic immune response. In healthy rats, the administration of the combination of FOS and resistant starch induced changes in the intestinal microbiota, by increasing lactobacilli and bifidobacteria in caecum and colonic contents. Furthermore, its administration up-regulated the expression of the trefoil factor-3 and MUC-2 in comparison with untreated rats, thus improving the intestinal barrier function. The beneficial effects observed with this combination were confirmed in the TBNS model of rat colitis, since it was able to exert intestinal anti-inflammatory effect, associated with an increase of protective bacteria and up-regulation of epithelial defense mechanisms," wrote M.E. Rodriguez-Cabezas and colleagues, University of Granada, Center for Biomedical Research.

The researchers concluded, "The combination of two different dietary fibers may result in a synergistic prebiotic effect, and may confer greater health benefits to the host."

Rodriguez-Cabezas and colleagues published their study in Clinical Nutrition ("The Combination of Fructooligosaccharides and Resistant Starch Shows Prebiotic Additive Effects in Rats," Clinical Nutrition, 2010;29(6):832-9).

For more information, contact M.E. Rodriguez-Cabezas, University of Granada, Center for Biomedical Research, Dept. of Pharmacology, Center for Biomedical Research, Granada, Spain.

From the January 10, 2011, Prepared Foods E-dition