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The next functional food trend

india Updated: Oct 08, 2011 02:13 IST
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Foods that claim to clean arteries are the next big functional foods poised to join the slew of products that perform feats like aid digestion, lower cholesterol and erase wrinkles.

Online trade publication reports that focus on healthy arteries could be poised to become the next big trend in cardiovascular health, with products claiming to reduce oxidised LDL cholesterol hitting grocery store shelves in the US next year.

LDL, also known as “bad” cholesterol, becomes even more dangerous when it comes into contact with free radicals, as it becomes more reactive. Oxidised LDL can lead to inflammation and harden arteries — the precursor to heart attacks and strokes.

FoodIn an interview, a representative for Stratum Nutrition said the company is currently in talks with US food, drink and supplement manufacturers about product launches that would contain its novel new fibre Artinia, which claims to control the oxidisation of LDL cholesterol in the arteries. The odourless, light yellow powder behaves like an insoluble fibre, the company said, and can be used in drinkable yogurt, smoothies, bread, baked goods, cereals, and nutrition bars.

The emergence of artery-cleaning foods could pave the way for a new category altogether in the functional foods market, which is already crowded with probiotic yogurts that claim to aid digestion, cereals that lower cholesterol and bottled water fortified with collagen, amino acids and vitamin A to supposedly combat wrinkles.

Stratum Nutrition is currently carrying out a clinical trial into the cardiovascular benefits of Artinia on people with high cholesterol.