Recent Research on the Allulose Health Effects (January 2023)

Recent Research on the Allulose Health Effects (January 2023)

Allulose is rather a new sweetener on the market. It is embraced with excitement due to its properties that resemble sugar without the side effects of sugar. In general, it is preferred because:

  • It is natural. It exists in nature in small quantities. 
  • It can be manufactured with simple fermentation
  • It tastes like sugar. When used in food, there is no need for agents to mask the aftertaste like many other sweeteners 
  • It can replace sugar in many existing recipes since its sweetness amount is very close to sugar. 1 cup of sugar can be replaced by 1.44 cups of Allulose. This eliminates the need for fillers as in the case of many sweeteners like Monk Fruit and Stevia.
  • It has almost zero calories.
  • It has zero net carb effect since it is not metabolized by the body.
  • It doesn't spike blood sugar levels since it is not metabolized.


These are very well-known facts, however, still many questions exist about Allulose's effect on the body, both short-term and long-term. The questions are valid since it is a rather new sweetener and many artificial sweeteners and sugar-alcohols were introduced as the best solution but came with their side effects. Compared to these, Allulose had advantages from the start since it exists in nature in fruits such as figs and grapes and the research in sweeteners has already matured with the right questions to tackle. While many scholarly research focuses on the manufacturing and commercial use of Allulose, there are an increasing number of researchers working on the benefits and potential side effects of Allulose. 

The well-known and well-cited research that took place in 2018 and 2019. Some of these are:

One study published in the journal "Obesity" found that allulose may aid in weight loss by reducing the absorption of calories from carbohydrates. In the study, obese participants who consumed allulose before a meal had lower blood glucose and insulin levels compared to those who consumed glucose. The fact that using a low-calorie (almost zero calories) replacement for a high-calorie sweetener helps with weight loss might look obvious but other studies with diet drinks with artificial sweeteners showed otherwise.  

Another study published in the "Journal of Functional Foods" found that allulose may have a prebiotic effect, promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut. This can help to improve digestive health and may have implications for reducing the risk of certain chronic diseases.

Allulose has also been shown to have a minimal effect on blood sugar levels, making it a good option for individuals with diabetes or at risk of developing diabetes. A study published in the "International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition" found that allulose was less likely to cause a spike in blood sugar levels compared to other sweeteners.

In this article, we are also going to look at some of the recent research that took place in 2022 and 2023. 

The first one appeared in "Molecular Nutrition and Food Research" and focuses on how allulose affects the accumulation of fat in the liver. The study used mice that were divided into three groups: one group was given a normal diet and water, another group was given a high-fat diet and water, and the third group was given a high-fat diet and a solution of d-allulose. The mice were fed these diets for 8 weeks. The study found that the mice in the third group (the one given d-allulose) had less weight gain and less fat accumulation in the liver compared to the mice in the second group (the one given just the high-fat diet). Additionally, the study found that d-allulose may change certain molecules in the liver, such as miRNA, which may explain why it prevents fat accumulation.

miRNA (microRNA) are small non-coding RNA molecules that play a key role in the regulation of gene expression. They bind to specific target mRNAs, leading to either repression or enhancement of translation (the process of converting RNA into protein) of the target genes. So, in this case, the researchers found that the miR-130 levels were elevated in the group of mice that were given d-allulose, and this may be one of the underlying mechanisms that explain how d-allulose prevents fat accumulation in the liver.

Molecular Nutrition and Food Research Magazine Cover that includes a study about Allulose Health Benefits in December 2022

The second study was published in "Nutrients" and aims to investigate the effects of allulose on the small intestine by using DNA microarray analysis. This technique allows for a high-throughput examination of the effects of allulose on the genes in the small intestine. They also looked at whether allulose can restore the structure and function of the rat intestine when consumed orally following a nutritional regimen called total parenteral nutrition (TPN) which can reduce the size of the intestine. They also monitored the effects of allulose on blood levels of hormones called GLP-1 and GLP-2 in TPN rats and normal mice.

In this study, the researchers found that the expression of many genes (8-fold more compared to fructose and glucose perfusion) was altered by allulose, suggesting a greater impact on the intestine compared to the effects of fructose and glucose. The study also found that allulose may stimulate the transport, metabolism, and development of the digestive system. The researchers then looked at whether allulose can restore the structure and function of the rat intestine when consumed orally following a nutritional regimen called total parenteral nutrition (TPN) which can reduce the size of the intestine. They also monitored the effects of allulose on blood levels of hormones called GLP-1 and GLP-2 in TPN rats and normal mice. They found that the expression of certain proteins that are important for maintaining the barrier function of the gut was reduced by TPN, but was restored when allulose was consumed. This research suggests that allulose may have a greater impact on the intestine than glucose and fructose and may enhance the gut mucosal barriers. 

The researchers plan to investigate more on the anti-inflammatory effects of allulose and whether it has beneficial effects on some intestinal diseases, such as inflammatory bowel disease and leaky gut in future studies.

Researchers in both of the above studies state that further research is needed. 

The current research is very promising about Allulose but as researchers state: more and more research is needed. We will update this article as the new research is published. 

Unlike other companies of our size, at Goalz, we emphasize the importance of scientific research in our choices. As a small family company, we have the ability of moving fast and making changes as needed. Because of this, we believe our close-following of the academic studies will both benefit us and all chocolate lovers.

Based on the existing research, we believe Allulose Chocolates are the right choice for anyone who is health-conscious and avoiding sugar. However, it is a fact that every 'body' is unique and reacts differently. Therefore, it is always recommended to listen to your body and consult your doctor.

References:

    • "Allulose, a naturally occurring rare sugar, reduces calorie absorption and provides a potential anti-obesity effect in obese adults: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial" Obesity (Silver Spring). 2019 Sep;27(9):1426-1435. doi: 10.1002/oby.22589. 
    • "Allulose as a functional food ingredient: Production, properties, and application" Journal of Functional Foods. 2019 Nov;59:101957. doi: 10.1016/j.jff.2019.101957.
    • "Allulose, a rare sugar, as a functional ingredient in food: a review" International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition. 2018 Jan;69(1):3-11. DOI: 10.1080/09637486.2017.1386168. 
    • "D-Allulose Supplementation Prevents Diet-Induced Hepatic Lipid Accumulation Via miR-130-mediated Regulation in C57BL/6 Mice"
      Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, December 2022, DOI:10.1002/mnfr.202200748
    • Takuji Suzuki et al. "Comparative Effects of Allulose, Fructose, and Glucose on the Small Intestine",Nutrients 2022, 14(15), 3230; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14153230

 


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