“Native chicory inulin” and maintenance of normal defecation

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Article
inulin, chicory, bowel function, constipation, health claim
First published in the EFSA Journal
9 January 2015
Adopted
11 December 2014
Type
Scientific Opinion
Abstract

Following an application from BENEO-Orafti S.A., submitted pursuant to Article 13.5 of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006 via the Competent Authority of Belgium, the Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA) was asked to deliver an opinion on the scientific substantiation of a health claim related to “native chicory inulin” and maintenance of normal defecation by increasing stool frequency. The food constituent that is a subject of a claim is “native chicory inulin”. The Panel considers that “native chicory inulin”, a non-fractionated mixture of monosaccharides (< 10%), disaccharides, inulin-type fructans and inulin extracted from chicory, with a mean DP ≥ 9, is sufficiently characterised in relation to the claimed effect. The Panel considers that maintenance of normal defecation by increasing stool frequency (provided that it does not result in diarrhoea) is a beneficial physiological effect. Six studies involving 86 subjects consistently showed that consumption of “native chicory inulin” at an amount of at least 12 g/day increases stool frequency. The Panel also notes the plausible mechanisms by which inulin and inulin-type fructans in “native chicory inulin” could exert the claimed effect. The Panel concludes that a cause and effect relationship has been established between the consumption of “native chicory inulin” and maintenance of normal defecation by increasing stool frequency. The following wording reflects the scientific evidence: “Chicory inulin contributes to maintenance of normal defecation by increasing stool frequency”. In order to obtain the claimed effect, 12 g of “native chicory inulin” should be consumed daily.

Panel members at the time of adoption
Carlo Agostoni, Roberto Berni Canani, Susan Fairweather-Tait, Marina Heinonen, Hannu Korhonen, Sébastien La Vieille, Rosangela Marchelli, Ambroise Martin, Androniki Naska, Monika Neuhäuser-Berthold, Grażyna Nowicka, Yolanda Sanz, Alfonso Siani, Anders Sjödin, Martin Stern, Sean (J.J.) Strain, Inge Tetens, Daniel Tomé, Dominique Turck and Hans Verhagen.
Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies
Contact
nda [at] efsa.europa.eu
doi
10.2903/j.efsa.2015.3951
EFSA Journal 2015;13(1):3951 [12 pp.].
Question Number
On request from
Competent Authority of Belgium
Print on demand
Number of Pages
12