Pectin is a well-known fibre found in fruits and vegetables. It occurs in the cell walls of the vegetables and fruits to give them structure. Upon integration with acid and sugar, jellies and jams form a semisolid consistency when it is cooled. Some fruits contain high pectin levels, such as quince and apples, seeds, rinds, and citrus membranes.
Nutrition from Pectin
Pectin is a fibre and contains nil calories or nutrients. It is a crucial ingredient in jams and jellies, and it also serves as a soluble fibre supplement. Twenty-nine gms or one fluid ounce of Pectin provides calories 3gms, protein 0 gms, fat 0 gms, carbohydrates 1 gm and fibre 1 gm. Neither the liquid nor powdered form of pectin contains significant amounts of vitamins or minerals. Furthermore, all of its carbs and calories come from fibre content.
Uses of Pectin
- On being heated in the presence of liquid, pectin expands and turns into a gel. It is a beneficial ingredient for giving thickness and used in food production. It finds use as a thickener in baking and cooking as well.
- Commercially produced jams and jellies contain added pectin.
- Flavoured milk and drinkable yoghurt contain added pectin as a stabiliser.
- As a soluble fibre supplement, Pectin is available in capsule form. Soluble fibre may help relieve constipation, lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels, improve blood sugars, and promote a healthy weight.
- The fibre is a critical component of time-release coatings used in some medications.
Benefits of Pectin
After ingestion, the pectin gels in the digestive tract, a function that provides numerous health benefits.
- Pectin improves Blood Sugar levels – Studies demonstrate that pectin lowers blood sugar levels and improves blood-sugar-related hormone function. Thus, it could help in type 2 diabetes management.
- Augments Blood Fat Levels – Pectin also improves blood fat levels by binding with cholesterol in the digestive tract to keep it from being absorbed. Thus, it lowers the risk of heart disease.
- Decrease colon cancer risk – The pectin fibre helps decrease inflammation and cellular damage that triggers colon cancer cell formation. Thus, it reduces the risk of colon cancer. Pectin decreases colon cancer risk by binding with and inhibiting the absorption of galectin-3. Galectin-3 is associated with an increased risk of colon cancer. Pectin is also helpful in lessening inflammation besides cellular damage that might trigger the formation of colon cancer cells.
- Endorses a Uniform Weight – Pectin helps to promote a healthy body weight. It helps to promote a healthy body weight. It also decreases the risk of obesity and overweight.
- Pectin Helps in Gastrointestinal Issues – Pectin is a soluble fibre and helps improves digestion. The soluble fibre turns gel into people’s digestive tract. They also soften the stool besides speeding the material’s transit time via the digestive tract. The soluble fibre is also a prebiotic — a food source for the healthy bacteria living in the gut. Also, this unique fibre may form a protective barrier around the gut lining to prevent harmful bacteria from entering your body.
On consumption of pectin, it may cause gas or bloating if consumed beyond certain levels. Avoid use if allergic to commercial products and supplements made from apples or citrus peels.
Pectin, a soluble fibre polysaccharide, is helpful in food production – both domestic and commercially. Its benefits to the human body in managing blood sugar and fat levels is a unique function.
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