On Sept. 5, Canada became the newest country to welcome Glico Nutrition’s Cluster Dextrin® when, by the stringent standards of the Canadian Food Directorate and Health Canada, it was certified a Novel Food. Now Canadians will be able to take advantage of what Japan, Europe, and the United States have for years—a natural ingredient that is so versatile and so popular for use in sports drinks that it has disrupted the hypertonic beverage market everywhere it’s been introduced.
Until Cluster Dextrin’s 2002 introduction in Japan, maltodextrins derived from starch were the typical active component of sports drinks and supplements. These carbohydrates could be effective in boosting energy, but in a haphazard way that came with significant downsides.
Cluster Dextrin, also known as Highly-Branched Cyclic Dextrin (HBCD), offers a completely new model for sports drink ingredients with the goal of hydrating, enhancing stamina, and supporting muscular development. It has a higher molecular weight than maltodextrin, but a narrow weight distribution. Combined with extraordinary solubility and near-zero osmotic pressure, ensuring fast gastric emptying, you have a rarely-seen dextrin configuration that is easily assimilated and advances to the small intestine in record time.
Made from a proprietary enzyme derivative, Cluster Dextrin, distributed in the U.S. and Canada by Mitsubishi International Food Ingredients Inc., is a product of long-proven reliability that can be equally effective before, while engaging in, and during recovery from vigorous exercise. Its biochemical form reins in carbohydrate degradation, entering the bloodstream gradually without precipitating a sudden rise in serum glucose and consequent surge in insulin production. Sports physicians have long advised that maintaining moderate, consistent glucose levels during exercise results in more efficient caloric combustion and sustained stamina. Like a complex engine, the parts of which all work in perfect concert to move it forward, Glico Cluster Dextrin works in ways that are so natural to the human body engaged in vigorous exercise that it ranks with the most perfectly designed adjuncts to athletic activity.
Advances in sports nutrition don’t arrive every day, and it’s reassuring to know that when they do, experts recognize their value. Canada’s adoption of Glico Cluster Dextrin, as a Novel Food, along with the FDA’s GRAS and a host of other international certifications, reflects the confidence of those tasked with safeguarding society’s well-being. But what this new certification means to those who lead energetic, athletic lives in Canada is that they can now enjoy hypotonic sports drinks containing an ideal supplement to help them achieve their goal of ideal health. In Canada, as with everywhere Cluster Dextrin has made its way, all bars are now set just a bit higher.