11 December 2010

New Engineered Forms of Dietary Fiber

You will have to excuse me while I get my skepticism under control. I admit that high fiber foods are a good thing and for those of us with diabetes, higher fiber consumption can be a good idea. When someone says that engineered high-fiber foods are becoming tastier and more appealing to consumers, I have to be skeptical.

When high fructose corn syrup (now corn sugar) was introduced it was hailed as a break through sweetener being cheaper than sugar. In the long-term it has caused more health problems. Those of us with diabetes can attest to this.

Fiber is not a food that is easily digested and very little is digested. Chemically created fiber needs closer scrutiny. How will the body react to the fiber? No tests on humans have been reported and from the article it is not known if the FDA or the USDA will become involved in approving the new dietary fibers.

Much of the problems with celiac disease has developed from the genetic modification of wheat. Because of the genetic engineering of wheat and rice being planned to increase fiber, we should be careful of creating more diseases that may even more difficult to treat.

The world is better off today because of some of the genetic changes to our food supply, but this change has also created health problems for a small percentage of the population. No one is testing all the genetic modifications and what it is doing to overall health of the population in general. One has to wonder if some of the disease increase is a result. There is little proof of this, but until some studies are specifically directed at this, how are we to know?

This is the reason for my questioning engineered fiber and whether the health benefits will in the long-term be justified. While the short article is encouraging, please be careful. Read the article here.

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