Cyclodextrins - Wacker Chemie AG


Safely Tucked Away

WACKER’s cyclodextrins hide the sometimes bitter taste of health-promoting additives in food, protect these sensitive substances and ensure that they are better absorbed by the body.

From tea leaves to ready-to-use powder: green tea in various stages of processing.

Green tea, for example, is reputed to confer health benefits. Its tannins contain catechins, which have antibacterial properties and are capable of neutralizing free-radicals. As well as being anti-inflammatory, catechins are thought to play a role in cancer prevention, yet are bitter in taste. Food companies are thus faced with a dilemma. On the one hand, they want to provide more and more of their products, such as soft drinks, with an additional health-promoting benefit, which is why they enrich beverage mixes, for example, with green tea extract. On the other hand, by adding this function, they incorporate the bitter aftertaste. Sugar or flavors can mask this, though WACKER developers discovered a better solution: cyclodextrins. These ring-shaped molecules can bind inside them the bitter substance contained in green tea, thus eliminating the taste perceived by the consumer.

The health-promoting benefit associated with green tea is due to its high catechin content.

Cyclodextrins’ Protective Shield

WACKER BIOSOLUTIONS also uses cyclodextrins’ protective property together with other functional food ingredients. One example is the coenzyme Q10: “We can use cyclodextrins to increase its solubility and so boost its bioavailability, says Dr. Helmut Reuscher, sales director of the Americas region and head of WACKER’s Dietary Supplements Laboratory in Adrian, Michigan. Another useful property of cyclodextrins is their protective action. Cyclodextrins shield numerous functional compounds against various external influences (low pH, oxygen, and light) that could compromise their effectiveness.

Food supplements on supermarket shelves: beside vitamins and minerals, coenzyme Q10 is among the most popular ingredients of such formulations. The coenzyme ensures that our food intake is efficiently converted into energy.

For all three areas, WACKER offers complete solutions that are tailored to customers and their needs: whether to mask undesirable tastes, stabilize sensitive ingredients or improve the bioavailability of functional ingredients.

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