The definition of dietary fiber - discussions at the Ninth Vahouny Fiber Symposium: building scientific agreement
AbstractA definition for dietary fiber was adopted in June 2009 by the Codex Alimentarius Commission based on the recommendation for endorsement of the Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses (CCNFSDU) in November 2008. The definition listed three categories of carbohydrate polymers that are not hydrolyzed by the endogenous enzymes in the small intestine of humans. However, the definition left the inclusion of carbohydrates with degrees of polymerization (DP) in the range of 3 and 9 to the discretion of national authorities and left the ‘physiological effect(s) of benefit to health’ as undefined. The ILSI Europe and ILSI North America’s committees on dietary carbohydrates organized a forum at the Ninth Vahouny Fiber Symposium in 2010 to discuss these implementation issues with the objective of building scientific consensus on how to resolve them. The results of this session are encouraging and indicated that the scientific community agrees on maintaining a worldwide consensus regarding the inclusion of non-digestible carbohydrates with ≥DP3 as dietary fiber and on a core, non-exhaustive list of beneficial physiological effects that dietary fibers have. These results are consistent with previous worldwide agreements.
Keywords: dietary fiber; degree of polymerization; physiological effects; Vahouny Symposium; Codex Alimentarius
(Published: 1 November 2010)
Citation: Food & Nutrition Research 2010. 54: 5750 - DOI: 10.3402/fnr.v54i0.5750
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