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Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is acacia gum?
    Acacia Gum, also known as Gum Arabic or food additive E414, is a dried exudation obtained from the stems and branches of natural strains of Acacia senegal (L.) Willdenow or closely related species of Acacia (family Leguminosae). It consists mainly of high molecular weight polysaccharides and their calcium, magnesium and potassium salts, which on hydrolysis yield arabinose, galactose, rhamnose and glucuronic acid. Being such a complex polysaccharide makes it a large indigestible molecule, in other words it is a dietary fibre. Source: EU Regulation 231/2012. 9th March 2012. It is a tree sap secretion produced by the Acacia Senegal and Acacia Seyal trees following a tapping incisions of the branches. The process is known as gummosis. The tree exudation dries out in the warm and dry climates of the Sahel region in Africa where the best quality Acacia trees are found. The dried lumps are then extracted by hand and are the raw form of Acacia Gum or Gum Arabic. These translucent nodules of Acacia Gum have a gloriously glossy shine and are worth their weight in gold when it comes to their nutritional and industrial value. Today Acacia Gum is used in anything from our food and drinks to arts, cosmetics, textile, pharmaceuticals and even fireworks.
  • What is Dietary Fibre and why do we need it?
    ​Dietary Fibre is a roughage found in plant foods that forms an essential part of a balanced healthy diet. It is essential for the digestive system and in particular the large intestines and bowel health. It promotes the growth of good bacteria in the bowels hence they fit the definition of Prebiotics. The best source of fibre is a healthy balanced diet with rich intrinsic fibre content. Read our Blog for more on this topic. Most of us are not getting enough fibre from a balanced diet and fibre deficiency is a global issue. This is why fibre supplements can help. Strong scientific and medical evidence shows that eating recommended amount of fibre, and in particular Soluble fibre such as acacia fibre, is associated with lower risks of heart disease, reduced blood cholesterol in the blood and bowel cancer. FibreAgent is a rich soluble fibre source that has very low calories and unlike low fibre sources, it is proven to have a strong satiety (feeling of fullness) effects meaning it helps with weight reduction. This is in addition to its other key benefits such as being soluble, easily mixing even with cold water, more tolerated by the gut and having a low glycemic index.
  • How's FibreAgent a Fibre Food Supplement?
    Let's start by defining "dietary fibre". This term refers to the group of plant food molecules that cannot be completely broken down by human digestive enzymes. See the definition of the British Nutrition Foundation. FibreAgent is made up of acacia fibre, that is an excellent source of natural soluble fibre indigestible to humans. As explained above it is a plant based polysaccharide meaning that it is composed of complex large carbohydrate molecules. They are not broken down and pass to the colon where they nourish the beneficial bacteria and support the all the associated immunity and health benefits. It is slow fermenting in the gut meaning it will not cause the digestive discomfort observed by other fibre rich supplements and sources. This has been evidenced by plenty of scientific research and studies. They consistently build on previous research findings that Acacia Gum has particular advantages and it can therefore fill the gap of dietary fibre deficiency. In December 2021 the US FDA approved plans to add Gum Acacia to the list of non-digestible carbohydrates that meet the definition of dietary fibres. Having considered all the evidence the FDA concluded that "the strength of the evidence shows that gum acacia has a physiological effect that is beneficial to human health". (See the FDA response letter on this link). Food products containing gum acacia (and there are numerous such products) can include the gum acacia content as Dietary Fibre in the Nutrition labeling.  
  • How does FibreAgent compare with other Fibre sources?
    The best dietary practice is to consume a variety of sources with intrinsic rich fibre content such as wholegrains (Insoluble), fruits and vegetables (Soluble). The aim is to achieve a 30g daily intake of fibre as part of a healthy balanced diet.  Most adults and children do not manage to achieve this daily target according to NHS. There are other sources of fibre but FibreAgent is the one that has mild to no taste, odourless, nearly calorie neutral and is one of the most (if not the most) soluble. However, one of the most desirable features of FibreAgent's acacia fibre is that it's more tolerable and soothing to the gut compared to other fibre rich sources. The main reason for this is the significantly slower fermentation characteristic of acacia fibre in the colon compared to others such as Inulin. Also, acacia gum is considered as FODMAP friendly or low FODMAP mainly as it ferments slowly. FibreAgent is also regarded as low glycemic meaning that it will not cause a spike in blood glucose levels and subsequent insulin levels when taken with other carbohydrate meals. FibreAgent has no Aspartame no sweeteners or anything artificial added. Acacia is not just a fibre source, it's a multi-functional product that can be used as emulsifying, thickening and stabilising agent in various applications and in bakery. It will lend itself to all these applications while increasing the fibre intake.  These attributes, in addition to being rich in fibre content per serving, make it a unique and superior source that every kitchen will benefit from.
  • Is FibreAgent a Prebiotic ?
    A definition of Prebiotics was introduced for the first time in 1995 by Glenn Gibson and Marcel Roberfroid. Prebiotic was described as “a non-digestible food ingredient that beneficially affects the host by selectively stimulating the growth and/or activity of one or a limited number of bacteria in the colon, and thus improves host health”. In addition and from the same source: "They can feed the intestinal microbiota, and their degradation products are short-chain fatty acids that are released into blood circulation, consequently, affecting not only the gastrointestinal tracts but also other distant organs." FibreAgent is acacia fibre, a dietary fibre that fits the definition of a Prebiotic. The characteristics of Acacia fibre are also defined in the European Food Safety Authority A good analogy is that prebiotics to gut health is what fertilisers are to a garden. The gut essential bacteria flourishes and carries out its role much better when fed with Prebiotics. The microbiome and its microbiota is a fascinating area of discovery and research. Visit our Blog pages for articles on these topics.
  • What makes FibreAgent a good fibre supplement?
    The best sources of fibre are natural foods with high natural fibre content such as cereals, whole grain and porridge. FibreAgent is pure acacia gum fibre. This means it is: Naturally rich in fibre. With 85% natural plant-based fibre. Highly soluble. Acacia gum is known to be most soluble fibre sources. Indigestible. It forms the roughage and the gel bulk that regulates water retention in colon. Slow fermenting. This makes acacia fibre well tolerated in the gut even in higher doses compared to other sources, reducing undesired bloating and gas. Low glycemic index (GI). It is essential to keep blood glucose levels under control for all of us and more so for those with diabetes. FibreAgent is acacia fibre with low GI meaning it doesn't cause a spike in blood glucose and the corresponding insulin levels. In fact studies have shown that acacia fibre intake leads to an attenuation of blood glucose absorption and insulin response. According to the US FDA, " This is associated with a reduced risk of coronary heart disease....Therefore, the strength of the available scientific evidence supports the beneficial physiological effect that gum acacia has on postprandial blood glucose and insulin".
  • How to take FibreAgent?
    ​The NHS recommended daily intake of dietary fibre is 30g for adults and for children it ranges from 15g to 25g depending on age. The EFSA concluded that there are no need to limit the daily intake of Gum Acacia.  Studies into the use of acacia fibre used various amounts from 20g to 40g. Scoop the powder to an empty, dry cup. Pour water, juice or any of your favourite beverages and stir to enjoy. Start with a small daily intake, gradually increase and maintain a consistent intake of FibreAgent for some 3 weeks to realise the benefits. Drink plenty of water. FibreAgent can be added to many foods, cakes and baking without altering taste and whilst adding to your fibre intake. Sprinkle on cereal or as a coffee / tea creamer for an enhanced mouthfeel effect. FibreAgent can be taken in any form. It is mild to tasteless, odourless and nearly calorie neutral. 
  • Does FibreAgent have side effects?
    As with all fibre supplements it is recommended to start with a small dose and increasing this gradually to what suits you. This could be starting with 2 teaspoons per day initially, one in the morning with breakfast and one in the evening. You can then increase this and monitor any undesirable side effects. Discomfort symptoms will ease and subside with use. FibreAgent is a 100% natural product with no additions. As with some other rich fibre sources, it could cause an increase in intestinal gas or digestive discomfort. Studies have shown that acacia gum undergoes slow fermentation in the colon so is well tolerated and causes less bloating discomfort compared to other similar fibre sources. In fact this is one of the main reasons acacia fibre is favoured ahead of other fibre rich sources. The 2017 Report by the  European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) on Gum Acacia (aka food additive E414) concluded that "there is no need for a numerical accepted daily intake (ADI) for acacia gum (E 414), and there is no safety concern for the general population at the refined exposure assessment of acacia gum (E 414) as a food additive." It is recommended to limit the daily intake and rely on a balanced diet with diverse sources of fibre.  
  • What about Allergens?
    There are no allergens in FibreAgent. See the Food Standard Agency list of allergens. Furthermore, FibreAgent has been manufactured in a UK GMP, FSSC ISO 22000 certified facility with stringent controls on food safety hazards, including allergens, in order to ensure the safety of our FibreAgent product to you as much as possible.
  • FibreAgent is E414. What are E numbers?
    The use of additives with emulsifying, stabilising and thickening properties is subject to regulation. Namely Commission Regulations EU Regulation 1333/2008 on food additives and EU 1129/2011 amending the previous. In the UK these are "retained EU Regulation 1333/2008". Approved substances in these Regulations are given "E" numbers. Acacia Gum or Gum Arabic is one of the most common in the food industry and is denoted by E414.
  • How does FibreAgent acacia fibre enhance the mouthfeel?
    One of the most desired functional properties of acacia gum is its ability to act as an emulsifying agent. It forms a gel that encapsulates the molecules of the constituents in a mix. This leads to an enhanced flavour and a more prominent taste in the mouth. This is why a coffee with some FibreAgent will taste better. Not to mention the extra beneficial fibre your gut will have. In fact this is and the fact that it is a binding gum are the reasons why acacia gum (Gum Arabic or E414) is found in many household products such as Coke and other soft-drinks. It joins flavours ad sugar in the mix and without it, the sugar will be found at the base of the container!
  • What is the expiry date for FibreAgent?
    FibreAgent comes with 1 to 2 years expiry (February 2025 or beyond). Check the side of the package for exact date. FibreAgent comes in high quality resealable recyclable food pouch. Reseal after use and keep in a dry place.
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