Isomaltulose is a sugar obtained through the enzymatic fermentation of sucrose, and it is largely used as ingredient for energy drinks or sports supplements. In fact it is particularly useful because it consent to obtain energy ready to use, but in a constant and prolonged way. It is used not only in the sports world, but also by food industries as an additive, because it consents to sweeten aliments and beverages, without any side effect.
What is Isomaltulose?
Isomaltulose is a carbohydrate, exactly a disaccharide, produced from sucrose through enzymatic processes , so it is naturally composed by glucose and fructose. It is naturally found in sugar cane and honey, but it can also be chemically obtained through bacterial fermentation. In particular, bacteria are added to common sucrose, especially Protaminobacter rubrum, so they start the enzymatic digestion of sugar, producing liquid isomaltulose, that is then crystallized.
Isomaltulose is a carbohydrate with nearly the same characteristics of sucrose. They differ from one another for the fact that, even if they are completely digested and then absorbed by intestine, isomaltulose is released very slowly to the blood, so it can provide a constant amount of energy in time. In this way it is possible to make prolonged exercise, without encountering a rapid decrease of glucose curve, without spikes and lows. It is a natural sugar, present also in honey and sugar cane, so it doesn’t leave the bad taste of artificial sweeteners used in many supplements and sports beverages. Another important benefit for athletes is that, because isomaltulose doesn’t create a spike on glucose curve in the blood, lead the body to use deposits of fats to obtain energy. This aspect is particularly important because it permits to lose weight, decreasing fats storages.
Isomaltulose offers also benefits for the general health of the body. In fact it can be used by diabetic people, for his very low glycemic and insulinic index, and it is considered as a non-cariogenic sugar, so it can be consumed without common sugar’s problems.
Energy is not important only during exercise, but also for mental activities. In fact brain can use only sugar as font of energy, so isomaltulose can be useful even for students. Moreover it delays the feeling of hunger, so it can be also used during a diet.
Sports supplements whit isomaltulose
Isomaltulose and foods
Isomaltulose is naturally present in honey and sugar cane. It is used by food and supplements industries to realize energy drinks and artificial sweeteners. It can be also found in:
- Powder milk
- Energy drinks
- Food supplements
- Sports supplements
- Chewing gums
Isomaltulose is a white substance, with a crystalline aspect, water-soluble. It is particularly useful because it is considered as a non-cariogenic sugar. Moreover it has a very low glycemic index, around 32, in comparison to glucose index of 100 or starch index of 70, so it is ideal to be consumed also by diabetics. This characteristic is due to the fact that it is easily and completely digested, but it is absorbed by the small intestine very slowly, so it doesn’t create spikes of glucose into the blood and it provides energy in a constant and prolonged way. This is due to the presence of an alpha-1,6-glycosidic bond into the molecule, which is more slowly decomposed by hydrolytic enzymes into our digestive system. For this aspect, isomaltulose prevent its accumulation in the body as fats, on the contrary it stimulates the utilization of fats during exercise to obtain energy. This kind of energy is longer than that provided by sugars, so it is particularly suitable during intense and prolonged exercise.
Isomaltulose provides the same calories of sucrose, about four kcal per gram, and has the half of the sweetening power of sucrose.
Isomaltulose is a natural disaccharide, present in sugar cane (vegan) and aldo in honey, and it is completely digested and absorbed by digestive system. For this reason it is considered safe, so it may not be cause for gastrointestinal problems, as diarrhea or nausea. This situation may occur if the subject suffers from an enzymatic deficiencies, or if he is fructose intolerant. Moreover, even if it’s produced using bacterial fermentation, it doesn’t contain bacterial substances that can cause health problems.