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Br J Nutr. 2012 Dec 28;108(12):2229-42. doi: 10.1017/S0007114512000372. Epub 2012 Feb 28.

Effects of a wheat bran extract containing arabinoxylan oligosaccharides on gastrointestinal health parameters in healthy adult human volunteers: a double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled, cross-over trial.

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FUGEIA NV, Arenberg Science Park, Gaston Geenslaan 1, B-3001 Leuven, Belgium.


Wheat bran extract (WBE) is a food-grade soluble fibre preparation that is highly enriched in arabinoxylan oligosaccharides. In this placebo-controlled cross-over human intervention trial, tolerance and effects on colonic protein and carbohydrate fermentation were studied. After a 1-week run-in period, sixty-three healthy adult volunteers consumed 3, 10 and 0 g WBE/d for 3 weeks in a random order, with 2 weeks' washout between each treatment period. Fasting blood samples were collected at the end of the run-in period and at the end of each treatment period for analysis of haematological and clinical chemistry parameters. Additionally, subjects collected a stool sample for analysis of microbiota, SCFA and pH. A urine sample, collected over 48 h, was used for analysis of p-cresol and phenol content. Finally, the subjects completed questionnaires scoring occurrence frequency and distress severity of eighteen gastrointestinal symptoms. Urinary p-cresol excretion was significantly decreased after WBE consumption at 10 g/d. Faecal bifidobacteria levels were significantly increased after daily intake of 10 g WBE. Additionally, WBE intake at 10 g/d increased faecal SCFA concentrations and lowered faecal pH, indicating increased colonic fermentation of WBE into desired metabolites. At 10 g/d, WBE caused a mild increase in flatulence occurrence frequency and distress severity and a tendency for a mild decrease in constipation occurrence frequency. In conclusion, WBE is well tolerated at doses up to 10 g/d in healthy adults volunteers. Intake of 10 g WBE/d exerts beneficial effects on gut health parameters.

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