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Processed Fiber Wins in Court

Processed Fiber Wins in CourtJudge Richard Posner of the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago, IL recently dismissed a case brought by an individual claiming that the fiber in foods like General Mills’ Fiber One™ and Kellogg’s Fiber Plus™ products should have to be labeled as processed fibers.

At the heart of the complaint was that these snack products, who often advertise “35% of daily fiber needs per bar” should have to disclose that the fiber is derived from inulin, as opposed to naturally occurring dietary sources of fiber.

The judge concluded that fiber food manufacturers are protected under federal law from not having to disclose that the fiber contained in their products comes from inulin and are not required to differentiate between functional and intact fibers.

While it doesn’t appear that inulin is indeed harmful – although it may cause GI disruption when consumed in high amounts – it does remain to be seen whether the health benefits of inulin and other functional fibers mirror those of naturally occurring, or intact fibers.

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