Beneo(TM) shown to increase bone mineral density

June 7, 2005 (Malvern, PA) - Previous studies showed Beneo™ Synergy 1 increases calcium absorption. An exciting new study designed to evaluate whether Beneo™ Synergy 1 can increase calcium retention within bones has found that ORAFTI’s patented enriched Beneo™ powder has this positive effect. The study revealed that when the diet was supplemented with Beneo™ Synergy 1 over a period of one year, it helped increase calcium retention and accretion in bones by 15%.

Osteoporosis threatens 34 million Americans according to the National Institutes of Health. One in two women and one in four men over the age of fifty will suffer a vertebral fracture, and with the increase in the aging population, the NIH predicts these numbers will continue to rise. In light of this, the ability to increase bone mineral density and strength is critical to our health and well being in our senior years. By increasing the mineral density of bone in early life and retaining it as we age, we can effectively reduce our risk of osteoporosis.

Long-term Efficacy
ORAFTI Active Food Ingredients, the world market leader for Beneo™, announces the exceptional results of a year-long intervention study that looked at the effects of the prebiotic Beneo™ Synergy 1 on calcium absorption and bone mineralization in young adolescents. The study was conducted by Dr. S. Abrams from the Baylor College of Medicine and the Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston. The results reconfirm a calcium absorption increase of 20%, previously proven by Dr. Abrams and coworkers during earlier short-term studies with Beneo™ Synergy 1. This increase in calcium absorption was seen after both two months and one year of supplementing the diet with 8 g/day of ORAFTI’s Beneo™ Synergy 1, a BeneoTM oligofructose-enriched inulin. But the most important result is a significant increase of calcium retention and accretion within the bones of the participants after one year of supplementation.

Kathy Niness, VP of Marketing and Sales at ORAFTI NA states, “This study is an exciting step forward, advancing the science and reconfirming the dramatic effect of Beneo™ Synergy 1 on bone health. It adds to the strong body of scientific evidence already proving that Beneo™ Synergy 1 increases calcium absorption and confirms that it also increases bone density over the long term. This is the first study of its kind proving this effect for any prebiotic ingredient and we are pleased it was conducted with Beneo™ Synergy 1 at the prestigious USDA Center for Human Nutrition at Baylor University in Texas.”

Study with 100 volunteers
The study examined the effects of dietary administration of Beneo™ Synergy 1 in a randomized sample of 100 male and female volunteers aged between nine and 13. Half of the subjects were provided with 8g of Beneo™ Synergy 1 to consume with breakfast each day for a year, while the other half took a placebo.

Prior to the study, all participants underwent measurements of calcium absorption and retention, via blood and urine samples, and bone mineral content and density measurements via X-ray body scans. These tests were repeated after two months and at the end of the year-long study. Regular checks were also made on the participants’ average daily diet in order to ensure that no significant changes in calcium intake occurred. Calcium intake was maintained throughout the study at usual levels around 900 mg/day.

Dr. Anne Franck, VP of Science and Technology at ORAFTI said: “Absorption of an adequate amount of calcium is particularly important during early adolescence in order to achieve an optimal peak bone mass. In doing this, and by further ensuring that the maximum amount of calcium is retained in the bones throughout adulthood, the chances of developing conditions such as osteoporosis later in life can be reduced. The Abrams research is physiologically significant as it provides an insight into the longer-term effect of Beneo™ Synergy 1 and demonstrates that it can be highly beneficial in increasing bone mineral density.”

The improved absorption of calcium in the body is attributed to the selective fermentation process of Beneo™ Synergy 1. The short Beneo™ oligofructose fraction in Beneo™ Synergy 1 can thoroughly change the flora in the proximal part of the colon, and the more slowly fermented, BeneoTM can function as a selective ‘fuel’ for this modified flora, which is kept metabolically active further in the gut. This selective fermentation pattern results in the production of short chain fatty acids. These acids decrease the pH within the colon, improving the solubility of the calcium present, which is then better absorbed into the body.

Beneo™ Synergy 1
Beneo™ Synergy 1 is a Beneo™ oligofructose-enriched inulin composition patented by ORAFTI. It is a unique combination that contains a specific distribution of carefully selected chain lengths of chicory Beneo™ and Beneo™ oligofructose. Earlier studies have proven that 8 g/day of Beneo™ Synergy 1 provides a substantial increase of more than 20% of the absorbed calcium from our daily diet.

About ORAFTI Group
ORAFTI Group is a subsidiary of the Belgian agro-food group Raffinerie Tirlemontoise/ Tiense Suikerraffinaderij and is part of the ORAFTI/ PALATINIT Ingredients Group of Südzucker (Germany).
ORAFTI Group produces Beneo™, Beneo™ oligofructose, Raftifeed® for animal nutrition, as well as Raftisweet® (fructose syrups), from chicory roots. ORAFTI Group's head office is in Tienen, Belgium and the company operates in more than 75 countries world wide, with production units in Oreye (Belgium), Wijchen (Netherlands) and Wijgmaal (Belgium). The ORAFTI Group also includes REMY INDUSTRIES, world leading producer of rice starches (Remyline®/ Remygel®), rice flours (Remyflo®) and rice proteins (Remypro®).

Previous studies by Prof. Abrams
- Abrams, S.A.; Copeland, K.C.; Gunn, S.K.; Gundberg, C.M.; Klein, K.O.; Ellis,
K.J. (2000). Calcium absorption, bone mass accumulation, and kinetics increase during early pubertal development in girls.
The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 85, 1805-1809.

- Griffin, I.J.; Davila, P.M.; Abrams, S.A. (2002). Non-digestible oligosaccharides and calcium absorption in girls with adequate calcium intakes.
British Journal of Nutrition, 87, S187-S191.

- Griffin, I.J.; Hicks, P.M.D.; Heaney, R.P.; Abrams, S.A. (2003). Enriched chicory Beneo™
increases calcium absorption mainly in girls with lower calcium absorption.
Nutrition Research, 23, 901-909.

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For more business information contact:

101 Lindenwood Drive
Malvern, PA 19355

Aandorenstraat 1
3300 Tienen
Tel: +32 16 80 13 01
Fax: +32 16 80 13 08
[email protected]

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